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Japanese Fashion
Gothic and Lolita Bible
Gothic and Lolita Bible
Japanese Fashion Book Review

This cultural phenomenon, which has been sweeping Japan during the past decade and has started to make serious inroads into American culture and fashion, is now completely covered by the English language version of the seminal publication of this subculture.

Seasonally published in Japan, Gothic and Lolita Bible is a 100+ page magazine which includes fashion tips, photos, sewing patterns, catalog descriptions, decorating ideas, and recipes and has played an instrumental role in both standardizing and defining the Japanese Lolita style.

Gothic and Lolita BibleA quarterly mook (magazine/book hybrid) that's a combination fashion magazine, culture guide, and art book, the Bible caters to fans of two separate but related fashions: Gothic and — to a greater extent — Lolita.

Volume 1 of the U.S. edition offers content from four volumes of this definitive Japanese mook for the first time in English, along with exciting original content covering the Gothic and Lolita culture in North America. It starts out with a full-fold-out dress pattern, and ends with a manga excerpt. In-between are hundreds of full color photos, articles, fashion tips, illustrations, and creative projects — more than enough to satisfy even the most ardent die-hard fan.

So pull out your scissors and chalk, grab a swath of material and get started. With a little creativity of your own to embellish what's already presented here could make you the next big thing!

Reviewed by Brian Cirulnick, May 2008

Japanese Schoolgirl Inferno
Japanese Schoolgirl Inferno
Japanese Fashion Book Review

Patrick Macias is one of our favorite bloggers regarding Japanese subculture, now Mr. Macias has a cool new book out which is titled Japanese Schoolgirl Inferno: Tokyo Teen Fashion Subculture Handbook and knowing Patrick's love of Japanese subculture we can tell that the book is killer!

Japanese Schoolgirl InfernoAside from having a lot of amazing photos, the book is a concise, organized history of how Japanese schoolgirls have affected the entire fashion industry and how emerging trends are actually started by the girls of Tokyo - right down to Wired Magazine now having a "Japanese Schoolgirl Watch" so that today's hipsters can stay on the cutting edge.

The "Sailor suited schoolgirl" has become an iconic symbol of Japan, and now ranks as being *as* recognizable as the kimono-clad geisha. The fact that Japanese schoolgirls themselves have created this aura has lead to a series of subculture spin-offs and factional sub-sub-genres that borders on Cosplay.

If you're a devotee of such fashion trends, or just interested in looking at barely-legal hotties in strange outfits, then pick this up and stay one step ahead of your clique-mates, bringing you to the top of the totem pole. Plus, you might learn a thing or two.

Reviewed by Brian Cirulnick, July 2007

Fruits: Japanese Street Fashion
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Fruits by Shoichi Aoki
Japanese Fashion Book Review

Fruits is a collection of Tokyo street fashion portraits from Japan's premier street fanzine of the same name. 'Fruits' was established in 1994, by photographer Shoichi Aoki, initially as a project to document the growing explosion in street fashion within the suburbs of Tokyo. Over the last five years, the magazine has grown to cult status and is now avidly followed by thousands of Japanese teenagers who also use the magazine as an opportunity to check out the latest styles and trends.

Always wear pink cat ears with the red wig...The clothing that these teens wear are a mixture of high fashion – Vivienne Westwood is a keen favorite– and homemade ensembles which when combined create a novel, if not hysterical, effect. This extensive collection of portraits represents a unique documentation of the changing face of street fashion throughout the last decade. Colorful, fascinating and funny, this is the first time these cult images have been published outside Japan.

Reviewed by Michael Pinto, March 2002

The Image Factory: Fads and Fashions in Japan
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The Image Factory: Fads and Fashions in Japan
Japanese Fashion Book Review

Just as a person contrives a style, the purpose of which is integration and the effect of which is presentation, so a nation collectively projects an appearance, a national style.

Japan has a history of chasing fads and fashion. Since the 19th century, foreign products have been welcomed in, from the cult for squeaky shoes in the mid-19th century to the current fad for virtual reality girlfriends. The Image Factory is both an investigation into fads, fashions and style such as US Army surplus uniforms, pachinko, mutating hair colors and an appreciation of their inherent meanings. The Japanese have seized upon fads and fashion as an arm of enterprise to a much greater extent than elsewhere in the world.

Reviewed by Brian Cirulnick, July 2005

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