Emo nails and fake tattoos? Review of 3 CONCEPT EYES / STYLENANDA!

If you have been following me from the start, you’ll know at least these three things: I like make-up, I like fashion (especially fashion that doesn’t cost me an arm and a leg) and that I went to South Korea last year.  What’s the connection? STYLENANDA! I discovered this brand during my stay in Seoul. I only spent 3 days there but seeing everyone dressing in the same basic way, I got an impression that Korean fashion was rather…plain? But then I found the STYLENANDA store in Myoungdong and I swear that place was packed with gems, I wish I could have taken home every single piece of clothing they had there! If you like simple but really cool fashion or you’re just looking for some fashion ideas and coordinates, be sure to check their website ♥

STYLE NANDA (ENG)

STYLE NANDA (JP)

                                                                 nanda

STYLENANDA happen to have their own cosmetic brand which is just as awesome — 3 CONCEPT EYES. Japan is a kingdom of baby pink, sparkling stuff but it’s not easy to get your hands on funkier colours like hot pink, orange, purple — stuff that looks really cool but apparently is not your usual kawaii. Luckily, there are some stores in Shin-Okubo that sell 3 CONCEPT EYES cosmetics (which gives me one more reason to go there all the time…). Selection is rather limited though, so I often order my favourites online. Some time ago, during one of my occasional online shopping sprees, I saw that STYLENANDA was looking for bloggers willing to review some stuff for them. “Will they choose me? Probably not, but heck, I’ll try!” — I thought. Well, guess what….

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 …I was selected to test some products! As you can see I already have a small collection of 3CE stuff. I’d totally recommend the lip pigments and the shimmer stick. The nail polish you see was a free gift included in my recent order, how nice!

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Here I used the hot pink (#ELECTRO PINK) pigment for cheeks and the orange one (#ISSUE) as a lip tint

So what will I review today? STYLENANDA sent me some rather interesting items and it was fun to test them! I got nail stickers — great thing for those who like fancy nails but don’t have much time / nail art skills / spare ¥6000  to splurge on gel nails.

Another thing I got was…fake tattoo stickers. Because I have real tattoos, it’s not a product I would buy, but I think it might be a good alternative for those who are not quite sure if they want to get inked permanently, so they can check what having tattoos would actually feel and look like.

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 3 CONCEPT NAIL LOOKS KISSY KITCH

Let’s start with the nail stickers. One sheet like this costs ¥770.

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 One package includes 20 stickers in different sizes, which is actually quite nice, because you can easily find stickers that match your nail shape and size. It’s super easy to use them — just stick them to your nail, fold and get rid of the remaining part by filing it off (a small file is included).

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This was the first sticker I applied, so it may not look that great…

…but I liked the final result. For a longer-lasting effect you could use a clear nail polish, but even if you don’t do that, the stickers won’t come off that easily. Personally, I think that this particular design is kind of emo, so I’d probably go with the clear ones.

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3 CONCEPT EYES FAKE TATTOO

And here are the sticker tattoos! As far as I know so-called “one point” tattoos are popular in Korea right now. I got a few little ones recently myself, and yes — I do plan to get some more, therefore I used these cute designs to see where I could get some new ink. One sheet like this costs 500 yen.

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“Life is a long lesson in humility”

Yes, I checked — it’s a quote by Sir James Barrie, the author of Peter Pan.

Unlike I expected, there was no water involved in the process of getting this temporary tattoo. All I had to do was just peeling off the plastic sheet with the “tattoo” and put it wherever I wanted. To my surprise they were very durable and didn’t come off after a shower! When you get bored of them, just wipe them off with a make up remover (they are water resistant).

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Okay…I REALLY love the way this sticker tattoo looks on my collarbone. I’ve been thinking of getting something in the exactly same spot anyway, so…should I?

It doesn’t look fake, does it?

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I happen to have real heart tattoos on both forearms, but what if I had an extra one?

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“Altiora petamus”?

Yup, checked this one too.“Let us seek higher things” — it happens to be a motto of the University of Salford in the UK (according to Wikipedia).

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Because I have Sailor Senshi planetary symbols on my forearm, I thought that a tiny planet would look cute. I wasn’t disappointed!

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Overall!

I’m always super busy, not really talented in the field of nail art and I rarely get my nails done at a salon, but on the other hand I like when my hands look neat so nail stickers seem to be a nice option for me. They’re easy to apply, the whole process takes no longer than 5 minutes and they’re much cheaper than a professional manicurist. I can’t really come to work with black nails though, so I’d choose a less flashy design — luckily 3CE has a wide selection of such.

And about the fake tattoos… As you know, I’m a fan of the real thing but what I really liked about the fake ones was that I could check what I would look like with some lettering or one-point tattoos. It was fun to play with them knowing they’ll be gone whenever I decide to remove them.

These were the products I got to test and review — if they’re not really your cup of tea, no worries! 3 CONCEPT EYES / STYLENANDA have so many awesome clothes and cosmetics to offer, I really recommend visiting their website if you’re into that stuff.

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And here you can watch stunning Sora and Minhee (more of Minhee actually) in STYLENANDA F/W 2014 collection teaser video. I’m going to Seoul again in October and I have a feeling that this visit will turn into one big shopping spree!

 

Thank you for reading!♥

Birthday fun times in Odaiba!

Odaiba is one of those places that even if you spent a whole week there, you’d still have a ton of stuff left to do. There’s a huge Gundam robot statue here, a miniature Statue of Liberty, really cool shopping centers (Venus Fort!), Madame Tussauds, Legoland, the world’s second biggest Ferris wheel, awesome theme parks and Showa themed shops… and a totally breathtaking view of course! It will take several posts to show you everything Odaiba has to offer, but I’ll get to that, I promise. This time I’m taking you back to the 4th of July, when I celebrated my 24th birthday (which is actually on the 3rd) with my best Japanese friends, Aya and her sister Chii (they made an appearance →here← too). If vintage game arcades, Showa period sweets and toys, haunted houses (or schools actually), awesome theme parks, takoyaki museum and poo-shaped accessories sound like your idea of fun — follow me!

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To get to Odaiba, you have to go to Shimbashi Station first and then take a ride on one of the best means of transportation ever — Yurikamome! Because of the crappy weather I coudln’t really capture the beauty of Tokyo Bay you can see from the Yurikamome‘s window, but trust me — it’s beyond amazing.

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The weather was as bad is it gets in the summer. Humid, cold, rainy, windy, cloudy. I’m surprised there was no typhoon just to complete this little happy list.

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Decks Odaiba has gazillions of fun stuff, so the weather didn’t make this day any less fun.

Let’s go!

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ハイカラ横丁 High Colour Alley

As far as I know, time machines haven’t been invented yet, but who needs one when we have Haikara Chome? If there’s something you can’t find there, it means it doesn’t exist. Sweets, toys, various characters; from Sazae-san and Ghibli characters to Pokemon and Kewpie. Ever heard of Namennayo? No? We have to fix that A-S-A-P! Read about Namennayo cats →here ←. Things you’ll find here will make you regret you weren’t born in late Showa era Japan.  There’s a mishmash of nostalgic items and totally recent ones — basically whatever floats your boat, I’m sure you’ll be able to pick it up here.

Get in touch with your inner Showa and get your dose of natsukashii.

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I’m not quite sure if boob shaped stress balls were a Showa thing or not, but I’m more than sure these things float someone’s boat.

Constantly being asked out by nampa people in Shibuya? Fed up with all those modeling offers? Japanese girls faint because they can’t handle your handsomeness? Prison break was successful? Find your perfect disguise here.

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“Caution: Do Not Eat This”

No sh*t, Sherlock.

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一丁目プレイランド 1-Chome Playland

Okay, I won’t even bother to look for elaborate poetic comparisons here. This place is A-W-E-S-O-M-E! Don’t even try to resist your inner child — just look at all this goodness.

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10 yen games, vintage Cola Cola vending machines, pinball, jukebox, idols of 80’s Japan…what is there not to love?

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 If you have a sweet tooth, you might want to check out this shop. One of the best things about those Showa stores in Decks Odaiba is that they’re not only fun but also dirt cheap!

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お台場ストレンジ·スクール Odaiba Strange School

お化け屋敷 obakeyashiki — haunted house

 

Have you ever watched any Japanese horror movies? If you have, you’ll know that the idea of what is scary in Japan is quite different from what we have in the West. They will scare you to the core. You won’t find zombies or flesh eating monsters with sharp teeth. Ever seen “The Grudge”, “The Ring”, “Infection”, “Dark Water”? If your answer is YES, you’ll know that Japanese horror stories can leave you psychologically traumatized.

That one time I thought that haunted houses can’t be that scary…Well, I was wrong. This place left me screaming and shaking, nearly crying. Try it if you dare.

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お台場たこ焼きミュージアム Odaiba Takoyaki Museum

 If you feel that your obakeyashiki experience was just too much for your poor heart, get your cute factor refill at Takoyaki Museum! Or just come here for the delicious noms!

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昭和駅広場 Showa Station Place

 

You can do like a million things in Odaiba and making your own short photo story is one of them.

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ジョイポリス JOYPOLIS

This place is a pure joy indeed!

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So this obakeyashiki was based on a story about a doll with black eyes (or NO eyes…?). Nothing says creepy better than a black-eyed doll with long black hair. All I can say is that I promised myself not to go to any haunted house ever again.

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We have all sorts of ‘wild’ over here. I don’t want to reveal too much, but I can tell you that it all felt so real and that as a person with strong motion sickness, I had to sit down and take a series of deep breaths for about 15 minutes after the ride was over.

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There are lots of Sonic themed attractions too. And if you’ve ever dreamt of taking a pic with Hatsune Miku — here she is!

The place has a lot of really fun rides, some of them are a tad scary, some will make you want to eject your lunch from your stomach through your mouth (okay, that was gross) but some of them will make you want to repeat the ride countless times. I’m the kind of person who is absolutely scared of horror movies, dark places, roller coasters etc. yet is  always the first to get in line for that kind of thing and most likely go five times in a row. Veil of Dark combined everything — zombies, guts, monsters, shooting, crazy roller coaster…and I regret I rode it only twice!

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 Now that’s some proper selfies!

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 Come to Odaiba and your dreams of turning into a cute seal will finally come true!

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 It’s a pretty long post so I thought I should add a pic of a potato or something but have some birthday purikura instead! It was really difficult to choose the best bits, because honestly everything in Decks Odaiba is just plain awesome! If you like having plenty of fun this place is for you. And it definitely is a great place to celebrate your birthday!

So last month I turned 24. I live in my dream country, have an interesting job, do what I love, meet lots of lovely people. For the time being, I’m one happy individual.

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Thank you for reading!♥

…and you can also follow me here if you like:

Instagram

Shichijyuuni Blog FB page

(I also manage the tattoo studio LaRuche’s FB page, if you’re interested)

How to: Budget fashion in Tokyo aka lookbook vol.2

I have said it many times, but I’ll say that again — Japanese summer is hot. Add humid to it and you’ll get tons of sweat and messy hair. Be ready: your hair will look like a bird’s nest and your carefully applied makeup will melt off of your face.  I tried to look decent in this weather, I really did. Did I succeed? My daily struggle with frizzy hair didn’t help me here, so be understanding.

Anyway! Here I present you my eight cheap outfits for July. I am not very happy with them, since this summer I replaced trying to be fashionable with trying to survive the heat.

Lookbook vol.2

check lookbook vol. 1 →here←

 

1.

 

t-shirt: GU, about 500 yen

black skinny pants bought like 2 years ago?: UNIQLO, ¥1998 (I wasn’t really a pants/jeans girl until this summer, what happened?)

favourite black shoes: Jeanasis, about ¥6000

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2.

 

white shirt: GU, about ¥500

unicorn skirt (I know you want it): random shop in my town, ¥600

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3.

 

pink shirt: H&M ¥300 (!)

black skirt: Forever 21, ¥880

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4.

 

absolutely favourite jeans short: Mustang, about ¥2000(bought second hand at WEGO)

top: random shop in my town (where I find 80 % of the Engrish t-shirts I wrote about →here←) ¥1200

favourite platforms:  Nadia, ¥2000 (bought second hand at MODE OFF)

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5.

 

(Okay, I like this one…)

top: Forever 21, ¥800

jeans: WEGO, about ¥4000

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6.

 

top: some random cheap clothing store in Marui in my town, about ¥300 ?

beautiful bag I got at Polish Festival in Roppongi last year: ¥800 !

tired face / dark circles under my eyes: Japanese summer heat, ¥0

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7.

 

That one time I tried to straighten my hair by myself.  It lasted 5 minutes.

top: GU, about ¥500

shorts: bought second-hand for ¥1000

socks: I guess I got them at WEGO, probably about ¥990 for 3 pairs

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8.

 

top: GU, about ¥500

jacket: I actually wear it only to hide my tattoos, but I remember I got it in Nippori and paid about ¥600

jeans: ANAP, ¥2500

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Thank you for visiting!♥

…and if you know any good second-hand stores in Tokyo — please let me know!

The biggest fireworks festival in Japan — Sumidagawa Hanabi Taikai 2014!

I’ve been living in Japan for 2 years and now I know how little I really knew before I came here. Of course, before I arrived at the Land of The Rising Sun I had read a heap of books, novels, websites, everything I could get my hands on.  If you’ve ever wondered what aspect of Japan I’m interested in, the answer is coming right up. It’s…. history. Not cute pop culture, not games, not fashion. I mean – all that stuff is equally interesting, but the history of Japan was something I spent the most time on when I was a student. (Answering another question that might come up — my particular interests are Meiji Period, World War II and the post-war society and economy of Japan). Anyway! I admit — I didn’t know a darn thing about the annual summer fireworks festivals. All the guidebooks I had might have mentioned them, but I guess I wasn’t a careful reader. Naturally, when I found out about these events, I knew I just had to go to one. Despite living on a tight budget at that time, I got my first yukata and I’ll be honest here — I  felt fabulous wearing it.

This year there will be no yukata unfortunately — but there will be lots of fun, Asahi beer and bad quality photos!

2012                                                ♥                                             2013

 

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If you’d like to read a few words about the historical background of the whole event (but you’re too lazy to google it yourself), here are a few websites:

Good old Wikipedia

Sumidagawa Fireworks Official Website

The Sumidagawa Fireworks Festival Survival Guide 

隅田川花火大会

The Sumidagawa Hanabi Taikai 2014!

 

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I admit that choosing Asakusa as your perfect fireworks observation spot is like loading your own gun and then shooting yourself in the foot. Everybody knows it’s going to be insanely crowded with thousands of people, everybody knows that it’s going to be hot, and by hot I mean Lucifer’s sauna kind of hot. Cook an egg on the sidewalk kind of hot. Yet every year most of the attendees go to Asakusa and for the third time in a row, I was one of them. I regret nothing.

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The sweetest people ♥ My best friend Ayaka (the little one), her younger sister Chika (but you can call her Chii) and Ayaka’s coworker Yama-chan!

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Every festival in Japan equals lots of food stalls selling typical festival food. What’s typical? Yakitori, takoyaki, yakisoba, sausages on a stick, shaved ice. Bad news for vegetarians — I guess you’ll have to bring your own snacks. What I like about Japan is that it’s perfectly okay to drink on the street. Not that I do that often, it’s just, you know — there’s nothing better and more refreshing than an ice cold Asahi in this simmering heat!

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I’d like to give you at least a tiny idea of how many people attend Sumidagawa Fireworks. Sometimes you don’t even walk — you just float with the stream of people. Streets around Sumidagawa river are closed, there are thousands of policemen guiding the spectators, patiently holding that yellow tape to keep everything in order. There’s no trespassing or taking shortcuts — if it says NO it means NO. This is Japan.

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These lucky guys! It was a great observation spot — no pushing through people, good view on the fireworks, just sitting there wearing a yukata, drinking beer, looking cool. Awesome.

Legend has it that these spots can be reserved months prior to the event. How exactly you book it, how much does it cost and how can you actually choose a spot? I have absolutely no idea — please enlighten me if you do.

Seeing all the best spots taken, we had no other choice but to keep walking in search of a place where we could feast our eyes on the colourful sky extravaganza.

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We kept walking and walking thought streets of Asakusa with thousand of other people, until it got dark and the fireworks started. It was high time to lower our standards and find a spot where we could see anything. At that point, really anything would have sufficed.

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YAAY! We found a good spot! Slightly tipsy crowd got all friendly, people were talking to each other, trying to catch the fleeting beauty of the fireworks with their smartphones. I’m sorry if these photos are not as impressive — I snapped a few shots for this blog entry only. I might not look at the photos ever again, I might lose the SD card, I might mistakenly delete the “Sumidagawa fireworks” folder from my PC one day. But the memories of what I saw with my own eyes — not through an itty-bitty lens — will stay with me for a lifetime.

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And what do you do after the fireworks? The party is not over, no no! Find the nearest convenience store, buy snacks, more snacks, tons of snacks! Get a sweet pineapple cocktail or a strawberry calpis drink if you feel like it…

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…then find a sweet spot like we did (with an amazing view on Sky Tree and some ToiToi toilets 10 meters away…), spread out that 100 yen small plastic tarp  (← or “leisure sheet” if you want to use Japanglish!) you picked up earlier…and pig out on all that konbini goodness like there’s no tomorrow!


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 Fireworks Festivals in Japan — crowds, cute yukatas, the smell of fried food, heat, humidity, sweat dripping down your neck. We managed to watch the beautiful fireworks show after all, but even if we couldn’t…It wouldn’t have been even a tiny bit less awesome! It’s the people that create the unique atmosphere. It’s that sense of unity I love. We’re all here to forget about work and school and all that stuff that doesn’t make life any easier, we’re here to have a good time, to appreciate Japanese culture. It’s the people who make you think “Messy hair? Sweating like crazy? Heat? Mosquitoes? Hell, I don’t care! It’s awesome!”. These three lovely individuals made my third Sumidagawa Festival a great one.

Thank you guys!

あやとちいと山ちゃんのおかげで今年の花火は本当に最高だった!これからもよろしくね!

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 ♥

Thank you for visiting my blog!

“Please an ice cream sundae” aka Engrish vol.1

It’s not a big secret that in Japan and other — especially Asian — countries English gets a little mixed up sometimes, due to pronunciation differences (L/R, V/B) and the trust they put into machine translators such as Google Translate. You might be surprised to see how many official documents, websites, notices etc. were written using the good ole Google engine. I’m not really even sure where clothes designers get their ideas from, but some of the t-shirt prints I have found in Japan were pure gold! Not that all of them have text with mistakes plastered all over them, sometimes it’s just something a tad bit funny or interesting…or unusually bold considering it’s Japan. There’s something quaintly charming about these oddly phrased designs, I just can’t stop grinning when I find a good one. I made a compilation of my favourites that I have found so far, and I’m sure this won’t be my last blog showing off some of these gems.

ENJOY!

So this fashionable and rather pricy (7000 yen eeep!) t-shirt says “Poop out” and “nobady”.

Trust nobady. Poop out nobady.

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I’m not sure if I would feel comfortable wearing this rather bold message on my chest…

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This one just had to be mine. I regret no single yen spent on it.

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Have you ever seen any more helpful, more considerate t-shirt?

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Personally, I like the message these pants try to tell us. Go hug your family if you haven’t done it today ♥

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My all-time favourite ♥

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What do you know about good books, you’re just a t-shirt eyyy?

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Umm…yeah.

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Congratulations!

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My American friend tried breaking the secret code this print was written in and here’s the shocking truth he discovered! In fact it is….a stalker t-shirt!

“Always right behind you, but when you notice I’ll do something naughty!” oops…

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Caution: reading this print might result in a headache. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

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“A scoop of fresh Engrish please!”

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Did you guys find your favourite?

Thank you for stopping by! 

BONUS!

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Rilakkuma Cafe in Shibuya ♥

“Nowadays, kawaii is used as description of general positive features of humans, animals, objects and phenomena. It helps to describe people and things that are not only pretty, attractive, nice, sweet and graceful, but also innocent, weak, helpless, tiny, even a little bit pathetic. In simple terms, it mainly refers to what is cute in a childish, immature manner, therefore arousing admiration. It may be a clumsy kitten, which has just fallen from the couch, a stuffed animal attached to a purse, a soft, big-eyed mascot without lips, a pink toaster, a furry photo frame or a ribbon attached to one’s hair. Also included in the term are things naturally tiny or the miniatures of what in nature is large and dangerous, e.g. smaller versions of wild animals such as elephants, hippos, bears. Soft and fluffy creatures like kittens, puppies, pandas, koala bears, bunnies, small seals are absolutely adorable for the Japanese.

The world of design is ruled by the same aesthetic. Kanako Shiokawa puts it aptly: “Kawaii lies in stylistic simplification, especially in terms of roundness”. Adding daintiness, picturesqueness and childish connotations to that definition, we get a basic tutorial on how to turn something into the quintessence of cute. By analogy, round-shaped objects with soft edges, devoid of spikes and sharp elements, rule all fields of industry, where kawaii has become a main factor in attracting customers.”

–a short fragment from my graduation thesis titled “The aesthetics of kawaii and its influence on everyday life in Japan” 

An adorable, lovable, sweet as sugar, soft and big-eyed stuffed bear? Ladies and gentlemen, I present you the quintessence of kawaii – Rilakkuma!

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Japan is the Kingdom of the Cute, no doubts about it. There’s Sanrio Puroland here – a Hello Kitty theme park, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu the Kawaii Princess, extremely popular mascots like Kumamon and Funnasyi. This summer Tower Records Cafe collaborated with San-X and the outcome was this lovely cafe that I’m about to show you!

Tower Records Shibuya, Rilakkuma Cafe

 1-22-14 Jinnan, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo

5 minute walk from Shibuya station (JR Yamanote, Tokyo Metro Ginza, Hanzomon, Fukutoshin Lines)

Limited opening time — 2014/7/10 to 8/17!

 

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The cafe is on the second floor of Tower Records in Shibuya and there’s actually a bookstore there. And since the presence of books is somewhat calming, the cafe also had this rilakksing atmosphere going on! (pun so intended it hurts)

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 So much chubby cuteness ♥

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 As you can see there were quite a few customers there! There’s a time limit though (one hour or one and a half hour?) so you can be sure there will be a table for you too.

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  If you’re a fan of Rilakkuma you’ll know that there are countless series and special editions like “Space Rilakkuma”, “Picnic with Rilakkuma”, “Bathing Rilakkuma”, “Sleeping Rilakkuma”, “Baseball Rilakkuma”, “Sailor Rilakkuma”, “Strawberry Cake Rilakkuma”…As I am writing this I am sitting on a “Nap on a cloud Rilakkuma” pillow. I thought that Tower Record could use it and decorate the cafe with different Rilakkumas, but maybe they wanted to keep it simple?

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 THE MENU!

As you can see the choice is rather limited, but the cafe is there for a short time only, so let’s be understanding. We have some übercute curry with Rilakkuma sleeping on a scrambled eggs pillow and  two dessert sets: Rilakkuma caramel mousse and Rilakkuma apricot baked cheesecake. As for drinks, you can get super adorable Irish milk coffee (aka sweet milk). All that goodness at rather steep prices but you only live once, yo.

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 Not only was it cute but it tasted really lovely!

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If you can handle some more of that kawaiiness, be sure to check out Rilakkuma Cafe’s souvenir store!

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Of all things cute Japan is drowning in, Rilakkuma has to be my favourite. If you feel the same way about the plumpy brown bear, check out the cafe the next time you find yourself in Shibuya. Trust me, that Rilakkuma curry will make an awesome Instagram post 😀

 

Thank you for reading!♥

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