Filed under Trends

A-Z of Japan: V is for…

What a struggle it has been to think of something to write about for this week’s A-Z of Japan. Apart from Digimon characters and the manga “Vampire Hunter D”, there aren’t really many things beginning with V in Japanese culture. Actually, the letter V doesn’t even exist in Japanese. However, I was looking through some … Continue reading

Zen and the Art of Healthy Eating

Yesterday, I was lucky enough to be invited to a wonderful event at the Embassy of Japan called “Zen and the Art of Healthy Eating”.  The event was all about “shojin ryori” (Buddhist cuisine), which I’m a big fan of because not only is it veggie, it’s delicious! Shojin ryori was introduced to the audience … Continue reading

Tokyo Rising

Tokyo Rising is an urban exploration documentary produced by VICE Media and sponsored by Palladium Boots, which highlights different cities across the world and the creative youth behind them. The host, Pharrell (of N*E*R*D), travels to Tokyo and explores how the youth are rising to meet the challenges of the “3/11 disaster” and asking the question of … Continue reading

A taste of summer in Japan…

This month’s Japan Blog Matsuri theme is Summer Lovin’, and so I’ve been thinking a lot about what summer in Japan is like. For the most part, it’s incredibly hot, ridiculously humid, and not a season I miss at all. At times, the heat is so intense that it makes doing anything quite impossible. Working … Continue reading

Fashion & Lolitas at Hyper Japan

Hyper Japan at Olympia Two in July was a great place to go if you have any interest in fashion. Not only was there a fashion show featuring emerging Japanese designers, there were also lots of amazing fashionistas to spot just walking around. In this post, I’ll focus on two things: the fashion show which … Continue reading

Support Japan Bra

I just read this on Daily Triumph Creates “Support Japan Bra”. Apparently, “The popular lingerie manufacturer Triumph created a new and odd model named “Support Japan Bra”. The lingerie doesn’t consist only in bras, but in differed lingerie pieces. They all carry messages of encouragement for the earthquake and tsunami victims in Japan.” Hmm. The … Continue reading


One of the buzzwords of the Japanese language right now is “mottainai” (もったいない / 勿体無い). “Mottainai” is difficult to translate directly, but means something like “what a shame to waste (something)”. Because it’s such an important word for the modern-day, and because it’s nice to have this feeling of regret about waste compacted into one … Continue reading

My word for 2011: Danshari (断捨離)

Danshari (断捨離) will be my word for 2011. When I told my Japanese co-workers this, they looked at me with puzzled expressions. They had never heard this word! I first learned about the word on a blog called “Create Eat Happy“. That blog explains “danshari” as follows: 断捨離 (danshari) means to throw away unnecessary stuff. … Continue reading


Today, a friend of mine used the phrase “grass-eaters” in an email, and I really couldn’t fathom what she was talking about!  I queried the phrase, and she sent me a link to a very interesting article.  According to Slate, Japan is currently panicking about “the rise of ‘grass-eating men’, who shun sex, don’t spend … Continue reading

Manba hits the UK!

I was surprised to read on the BBC website this week that the bizarre Japanese fashion ‘manba‘ has recently become popular in England! Manba is an extreme branch of the fashion known as ‘ganguro‘, where young people (usually women) make their skin really dark (with self-tanning products from Afro-Caribbean stores) and paint white circles around … Continue reading