Posts Tagged ‘Uniqlo’

Jil Sander returns to Uniqlo for Spring 2010

Posted 22 Dec 2009 — by Andy in Tokyo
Category News, Shopping in Japan, Style, Tokyo

Jil Sander and Uniqlo clearly know when they’re on to a good thing: from tomorrow (23rd December) those of you living in Japan will be able to get your paws on items from the +J Spring/Summer 2010 collection. The UK gets the collection on the 7th January, with the US following a week later on the 14th.

+J Uniqlo x Jil Sander Spring/Summer 2010 Collection

Official press release:

The season introduces fresh perspectives on volume, teamed with perfect harmony in fibre, colour, optics, and touch. Experimentation is essential, but subtle, leading to new interplays of material and motion.

Iconic simplicity
Leaving sporty stereotypes behind, +J endorses functional elegance, dynamic textiles, and distinctive shapes. Softly articulated, silhouettes give free reign to movement and ease. Fabrics are straightforward, expertly woven, alluringly sculptured, neat and subtle. Initiating marriages of convenience between structure and fluidity, delicacy and determination, coupling strong characters for the common good.

Natural nobility
The collection quietly bridges the emotional and the formal, femininity and masculinity, experience and evolution. Luxury lies in inspiration and discreet perfectionism, applied to truly modern tailoring. Environmental concerns move to the heart of research, engaging in clothing that is both responsible and innovative.

Clarity and Lightness
Opting for the precision of airy colours, white and pure ivory feature as the radiant centre of energy and confidence. Pastel hues, pearly reflections, and chalked out acids create luminous lightness. Waterproof textiles become more feminine, made of ultra-fine cotton, tech-satins and sumptuous wools with an overwhelming impression of liquidity.

Prices (for Japan):
Outerwear, Coats & Jackets  4,990円 ~ 14,900円
Bottoms  3,990円 ~ 5,990円
Shirts  3,990円 ~ 4,990円
Cut & Sewn  1,990円 ~ 4,990円
Knitwear  2,990円 ~ 9,900円

Links:
Uniqlo +J sites in Japan, the UK (press release) and the US (press release).

Four of the Best: Men’s Clothes Shops in Japan

Posted 27 Nov 2009 — by Andy in Tokyo
Category Only in Japan, Shopping in Japan, Style, Tokyo

Splashing Out

Beams

Beams
If you’re looking for a well-crafted Italian suit, new shirt for work or a nice tie or two then Beams is the place for you. The January sales provide a good opportunity to pick up items at half price, as well.

Ships

Ships
Not quite as highfalutin as Beams, with much of their stuff coming in at a lower price point. Ships is a great place for casual items, especially classic American workwear -plaid shirts, etc – and British country gear (by country gear I mean wax jackets and so on, not Land Rovers, clay pigeons and field spaniels).

Buying the Basics

Uniqlo

Uniqlo
The best bet for everyday staples like socks and underwear. Uniqlo has seasonal collaborations with well-known designers – most recently Jil Sander – but don’t expect the quality to be up there with the best. Their HeatTech line of thermal clothing has received wide acclaim and is proving incredibly popular with the frozen masses.

Universal Language

Universal Language
The new kid on the block (ie, I didn’t know about it until a few weeks ago), Universal Language is a bit like Ships but much cheaper. I believe it’s owned by high-street chain The Suit Company.

Uniqlo Designers’ Invitation Project: Gilded Age

Posted 30 Apr 2009 — by Andy in Tokyo
Category Entertainment, Events, News, Shopping in Japan, Style

gildedageuniqlo

Every few months Uniqlo introduces a new range of clothes in conjunction with famous design types. One of this season’s collaborations is with Gilded Age, whose clothing is “inspired by the craftsmanship of the Gilded Age and assembled from artisanal fabrics.”

Blimey. Well, a bit of Googling reveals that the Gilded Age (1878-1889) was shaped by America’s greatest industrialists – men like John D. Rockerfeller, Andrew Carnegie and J.P. Morgan. These chaps created the modern industrial economy and helped America’s manufacturing capacity dwarf the likes of Britain, Germany and France.

What does this mean for the clothes, then? The Uniqlo collection utilises natural, earthy colours and light, comfortable fabrics, with jackets boasting a deconstructed smart-yet-casual cut that would normally cost you a lot more than ¥5,900. The only problem is finding a store that hasn’t already sold out!

More: The Designers’ Invitation Project at uniqlo.com (in English)

UNIQLOCK for the iPhone

Posted 24 Nov 2008 — by Andy in Tokyo
Category Advertising in Japan, Entertainment, Only in Japan, Video

For the past couple of years UNIQLO have been using their UNIQLOCK – an online timer/screensaver thingy – to promote their latest wares. The idea is quite simple: get several good-looking Japanese girls, dress them in this season’s new clothes, get them to perform weird manouvres, add a quirky song by Fantastic Plastic Machine, and Bob’s yer uncle, a sure fire hit!

You can now download the UNIQLOCK to your iPhone (or iPod Touch). I’m not really sure why you’d want to, but there you go. You can also add a fancy widget thingy to your blog or website, like this:

Click on the clock above for full-screen dancing girl goodness.

Walking from Shibuya to Harajuku

Posted 05 Oct 2008 — by Andy in Tokyo
Category Advertising in Japan, Events, Only in Japan, Photography, Shopping in Japan, Tokyo, Video

I went to Shibuya and Harajuku yesterday for some shopping and a bite to eat. Google Japan were doing one of their “Things you can do with Google” promotions (“Googleで、できること”), which I’d heard about at Danny’s Tuesday night dinner (more stuff about this from Ken and W+K). The sign says “Fly in the sky in Shibuya”:

There were a set number of tickets available throughout the day for people who wanted to take part. There was no shortage of balloons:

Balloons

Here some staff members were preparing to attach the first flyer of the afternoon to the balloons:

By this time lots of people had gathered round to see what was going on. The first flyer – a girl in her early twenties – was helmeted and attached to the balloons by several sturdy-looking ropes. Finally, after quite literally minutes of anticipation, the girl was released:

Well… that wasn’t quite what the crowd were expecting, although the girl did seem to enjoy herself. So did this chap:

It’s a short walk from Shibuya to Omotesando: one of Tokyo’s poshest streets:

This is the interior of Omtesando Hills, which was opened in 2005 and designed by Tadao Ando. The shops are eye-bleedingly expensive:

Omotesando Crossing is where Meiji-dori and Omotesando meet. It’s always busy around here:

Roadworks along Meiji-dori. I like the illuminated traffic cones. They would serve as a fantastic addition to any university student’s bedroom:

This is the exterior of Uniqlo’s special UT store, which is a short walk towards Shibuya from Omotesando Crossing:

As you can see, Uniqlo now sell Japanese women in conveniently-sized plastic containers, and at very reasonable prices:

Oh, so they’re just t-shirts then. How disappointing:

Is Japan Expensive? Part 3: Clothing

Posted 26 Jun 2008 — by Andy in Tokyo
Category Is Japan Expensive?, Shopping in Japan, UK

Part three of our “Is Japan Expensive?” series looks at clothing. For most newcomers to Japan who don’t speak the lingo the most likely line of employment will be as an English teacher or assistant, usually with one of the big “Eikaiwas” like Aeon, or through the government-sponsored JET programme. When you leave your home country you’ll have to fit all your worldly belongings in one large suitcase, and of course things can – and do – go missing. There is also the Japanese summer to contend with: 36 degree heat and 100% humidity will leave your once pristine shirts with horrible yellow stains around the armpit area, and thanks to the uselessness of most washing machines here (cold water only!) you’ll find them impossible to completely remove.

Basically, you’re going to need some new clothes.
For this week’s comparisons I’ve chosen either identical items of clothing or similar clothing from similar shops. I’ve only picked three items because, to be honest with you, the list could have gone on forever!

Jeans: Diesel Larkee

Polo shirt: M size, white

  • UK price: £12.00 – from Marks & Spencer
  • JP price: £6.06 (¥1,290) – from Uniqlo

Work Shirt: M size, white with stripes

  • UK price: £25.00 – from Topman
  • JP price: £23.67 (¥5,040) – from The Suit Company

As you can see, all items are cheaper when purchased in Japan. The Diesel jeans might be something of an exception, as Diesel stores in Japan seem to sell jeans for a significantly higher price than rakuten.com does (¥30,000 plus). Is this the same for the UK as well?

The polo shirt from Uniqlo is likely to be of a lower quality than its Marks & Spencer counterpart (probably a cotton/nylon mix), hence the much lower price. I highly recommend Uniqlo for basics (vests, underwear, etc) because it’s so cheap. They also have a spiffing t-shirt campaign running at the moment called UT, which has an equally spiffing website (take a look!). There are some limited-edition Metal Gear Solid 4 tees for sale at the moment (see here).

For work clothes, such as shirts and suits, Japan – or at least its main cities – provide an incredible range of shops to choose from. The Suit Company sells affordable clothing for 20-somethings who don’t wish to break the bank. One of the best features of The Suit Company is the variety of shirt sizes they offer, especially in sleeve length: compared with the average Japanese customer I have very long arms – very much like a shaved orang-utan – which has resulted in one or two disastrous purchases in the past.

In conclusion, if you’re of average height, and are not overweight, you will probably have little trouble buying clothes in Japan. Big feet can be a problem, however. Shoe shops usually stock sizes up to 28cm, which is a UK size 9. They do have sizes bigger than this, so you don’t have to wander around barefoot or anything, it’s just that your choice of shoes/trainers will be a bit more limited.

For shoes and trainers, ABC Mart is a good place to start, and if you’re a real trainer fanatic I strongly recommend exploring the streets of Shibuya (throw the map away – exploring is more interesting without one!).

Next week we’ll be looking at the biggest expense of them all: housing and rent.

(Prices calculated using 26th June’s exchange rate: #1 = 212.94)