Something which has been a huge inspiration for myself is the way Japanese people wear their clothes, what they wear and how they tend to piece it all of it together.
Im not talking about Geisha girls or the trend of Cosplay, what really has influenced me was the street style of the east, what clothes were considered trendy among the youth of Japan.
Me in a Harajuku store; 2015.
When I took my first holiday to JP in 2015 clothing was something I was semi interested in, having an interest in buying different Adidas branded sneakers, purchasing a few branded tees but overall my style was still finding it own with little variance in what I wore.\
Going through my the holiday wafting from store to store, seeing the sites and the cities I would eventually see more styles, textures, outfits which I hadn’t seen before and simply realised just how extravagant the outfits I saw where, every corner of a the city there would be an outfit which looked as if it was thought out, pieced together intricately where every item had meaning.
I like to look back on this photo from my visit to a temple in Kyoto named: Fushimi Inari Taisha. One of Japan’s most visited tourist locations where there are many many shrines dedicated to the Inari, a God of Rice.
Although It is ultimately subjective but if you are looking at the photo you see the visual difference in the aesthetics of each outfit worn by me and my photo bomber.
Very casual look with a relaxed fit. Nothing over the top with the t-shirt and pants being monotone (black & white), with some Old Skool Vans.
Not too much variation in colour that particularly catches the eye.
Person who I assume was a Japanese native:
Colour coordinating the outfit, using colours of brown, beige and navy blue but coordinating them in a way that appears to be formal but would still be acceptable in a casual ‘street’ setting. Not only further accessorising with his shoulder bag, headwear and jacket in hand to but the way he pieces it together makes it seem as if it was created through a process of trail and error.
This attention to detail is what I was exposed too by being in Japan, seeing this outfit, analysing it and thinking about how it was put together. Comparing what I imagined was to be the thought process behind and comparing it to that of your own ideas and thoughts opens your mind to a new level of creativity and self expression and in turn, you grow and your sense develops, becoming more refined.
Each piece of clothing is so different from what tends to be worn casually but is pieced together to have a distinguishable aesthetic. A revamped street style.
I had not realised it at the time of initially viewing the image years ago but upon writing this piece I can gladly say that this was a key moment in my life and for my studies, an auto ethnographic epiphany has occurred . The realisation that I was unconsciously analysing aspects of another culture and relaying it upon my own thoughts and ideas to change the way I saw the world and what I liked.
Fast forward two years from my first trip and you can see an example of how I have been influenced by different styles, wanting to wear different colours, shapes and looks was reflected in my choice of purchase.
This is all heavily important to me as I use this kind of inspiration to curate my own ideas that end up being represented as clothes I design and sell under the brand name Grown Ass Kid.