Tuesday, November 9, 2010
The Virgin Mary Vintage Shop+Illustration
Today I did an inspiration of one of my favorite personal style icons of underground Japanese street fashion. Her name is Ari-san, and she is the owner of "The Virgin Mary" in Tokyo, Japan. "The Virgin Mary" is a vintage clothing store in Shibuya. Ari-san is the same girl who was a part of "Cult Party" in Koenji. The new shop has gained a lot of popularity with the underground Tokyo street fashion scene. In my opinion, Ari-san is one of the most influential people in Japanese fashion right now, as far as subcultural relevance. Many people may be familiar with "dolly-kei" or "mori-gal." However, Ari-san apparently likes her style to be called "Cult Party-Kei," and she has ever right to coin her own name for this style. It is very original, mixing antique vintage, frills, and random sheer homemade elements into fashion.
I was able to go to both "Cult Party" (when it was open), and "The Virgin Mary." Ari-san wasn't there this time, but one of her great shop staff girls was. Here is a picture of me and her. It was actually the same day I met with Tavuchi-san from Spank!.
I think one of the favorite things I like about her concept that also seems to reign subconciously with philosophy behind Japanese fashion is that some things that are not perfect are still pretty. Damaged, stained, and dirty is sometimes okay when its actually done right. I appreciate Japanese fashion for taking things that many in the west may consider wasting, and appreciating it because it has a story. Not only do they appreciate it, but they wear it in some of the most unique and interesting ways ever.
I hope that Ari-san continues to be successful in her career. She also has her own blog on DROPTOKYO's web site. Its http://ariari.droptokyo.com/blogs/ . I applaud the Tokyo street fashion scene for always staying useful, innovative, and ahead of the game. If only I could see some of these kids running around the west. Cult Party-Kei USA anyone? I'm down!