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1 year anniversary party at Diptyque store in Aoyama

Today, Diptyque store in Aoyama is celebrating its 1st anniversary. I went to their party to check new products and choose gifts for my family. The place was tiny so the party looked more like soiree with lit candles and cushy sofas. The shop presented their newest holiday collection of three fragrance candles in beautiful limited edition holders created by Qubo Glass – an inspirational duo from France. I loved all three fragrances but the blue – “winter” was my favorite.

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The manager of the store kept pouring champagne into our glasses. He must have followed the “Russians drink a lot” sort of idea. ^-^ I certainly didn’t mind. ^-^ I ran into a friend at the party and meet a couple of interesting new people – all in all a successful event.

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I am a big fan of Diptyque. Their candles are the etalon of a perfect gift for me – perfect to give and absolutely perfect to receive. A Diptyque candle brings holiday into the house. The coziness of a twinkling light warms up my heart while the slowly pouring scent calms me down from within. It creates memories of comfort, safety and gratitude. I sure am grateful for the happy moments that the smell of the candle helps me recall. Diptyque is most certainly an indulgence but the one that you never regret because it is worth every penny. ^-^

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Holiday offerings from Artisan&Artist

I am a little late on the reports these days but as I always say better late than never. Three weeks ago, I went to the exhibition of Artisan&Artist new SS2015 collection.

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I am still discovering the brand. To me it always was all about the makeup but they carry a much wider range of items, from camera accessories to travel bags. I particularly liked the backpacks with wide openings. It is always a pleasant surprise to find something cute being also extremely functional. I posted a picture of me trying it on on my social channels and it became quite a hit. My 18 year cousin wants it. My mom wants it. That’s how versatile the style is. ^-^

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The camera straps are brand’s best selling items, especially the woven silk ones. They are handmade with traditional weaving techniques by Kyoto artisans. They are not just made in Japan, they are made right in the middle of Japan’s most exquisite artistic center where traditions and skills are perfected generation after generation. If it’s made in Kyoto, it’s as good as it gets.

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The brand of course also carries a wide range of professional makeup cases from transformer-like giants to small compact ones you can carry to the set for final touches. They even have a line of makeup brushes – so soft, I couldn’t stop touching them. ^-^

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Artisan&Artist is not all about women. Their range of male bags as well as professional camera accessories is just as big.

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Unfortunately, I wasn’t allowed to take pictures of the new SS2015 collection but take my word for it – it’s fabulous. Bright colors, summer themes and great versatile styles. You’re going to love it. It will be released part by part starting from January.

For the holiday season, Artisan&Artist is partnering up with Disney and SK-II – my favorite cosmetics brand. Both collaborations look fantastic but I am particularly attracted to the SK-II one. I know I don’t need it but I WANT IT anyway!

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But I did get a wonderful early Christmas present from the brand – this super cute makeup pouch. It is the perfect size and keeps all my makeup thingies organized. I can see everything upon opening the pouch – no more fishing around for the right item. ^-^

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By the way, the new hyper sharp Maybelline eyeliner is incredible. It is so precise, I make no mistakes when drawing a cat eye line. Highly recommend. ^-^

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Happy holidays my lovelies and happy holiday shopping. An exciting season is upon us. ^-^

Maybelline NY Tokyo Fashion Week SS2015 after party

Maybelline NY is one of the main sponsors of Tokyo Fashion Week and a really generous one. Every time I went to a runway show that was supported by the brand, I got a gift bag full of cosmetics from their latest line. And the Halloween themed after party they threw for the closing of the Fashion Week was better than ever. It was at the trendy Le Baron de Paris club and almost every face was a familiar one. Thanks to the brand, over the past few years I met a lot of interesting people and made some good friends.

At the party, all the guests were treated to amazing spooky makeovers. I got a spiderweb with two cute spiders from one of the very skillful artists working that night.

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The party as well as all the runway shows were sponsored by Dassai sparkling sake. I didn’t like it as much as I wanted to. The CEO of the company was so charming (I met him at the sponsor booth of Tiger Onitsuka runway show). I just always associate sake with Washyoku – Japanese food. I can’t quite make myself drink it in a sparkling state at a party. Sake for me should come in a warm cup on a New Year’s morning with me sitting under Kotatsu (low table with a built-in heater) and eating Osechi (traditional Japanese New Year’s spead). ^-^ I am sorry but some traditions shouldn’t be modernized. ^-^

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That day, I lost my favorite Comptoir des Cotonniers jacket. It is a very sad story. I saw the jacket for the first time at a preview during press days last December.  Then, I saw it again at the CdC event later this year. I tried it on and I fell in love with it right away.

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I patiently waited for the summer sale to snatch it, then vigorously hunted the right size down and at last bought it at half off. But I had to wait some more before I could start wearing it. When at last chilly autumn days came I was in heaven. I put my jacket on and fell in love with it all over again. It was so comfy and it went with everything I own.. I wore it for exactly 3 times before losing it somewhere on the street. It fell off my stroller and I didn’t notice because I was carrying my son in a carrier that blocked my vision.. I was planning to wear it with my Derek Lam dress for the Maybelline party later that day but had to change the entire look at the last minute. The good thing is, I always have another Comptoir des Cotonniers jacket to wear instead of the one I lose. ^-^ The bad thing is, I still miss it madly. I keep searching for it on eBay and Yahoo auction but so far no luck. If any of you dear readers happen to come across this jacket, please do let me know!

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Back to the party.  My friend Adrian who never leaves home without a drawing pad was entertaining the party by randomly drawing everyone he spoke to – amazing talent! Events should start paying him money! ^-^

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I made some new friends there thanks to the relaxing atmosphere of the party, including Mathieu – the founder of Tokyo street style magazine. (we are about to do an exciting project together)

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Samantha – a very friendly and elegant model and Jillian Kate – Nylon blogger/model and stylist – both from California.

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Thank you Maybelline again and again for the wonderful time and precious memories.

Somarta’s take on biology

On the last day of Tokyo Fashion week I went to a Seibu department store in Shibuya to check “Body Genealogy” – a popup exhibition of avant-garde couture pieces from a Japanese label Somarta.

Somarta’s designer Tamae Hirakawa beside RTW presented a very unique collection of highly-crafted garments and accessories that were inspired by various body parts. I particularly liked skin-tight lace bodysuits. I am sure that a lot of celebrities would want to have their hands on those costumes.

The designer experimented with various non-fabric materials, implementing a lot of intricate beading work and sculpted architectural shapes. There was so much originality, at times it took my breath away. I remember myself awing out loud a lot. My favorite piece from the entire collection was the moth dress with amazing beading work in front.

I would have loved to see these beauties on the runway – it would have made the best show of the season for sure but then again giving everyone an opportunity to see all the details up-close was a smart move. I just wish the exhibition was permanent. ^-^

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Onitsuka Tiger X Andrea Pompilio RTW Spring 2015

Onitsuka Tiger runway show was the last one for me this season and the best one yet in terms of entertainment. ^-^ Thanks to my friend Fabio, I got myself a VIP seat at the sponsor booth and an opportunity to wait for the start of the show there instead of lining up outside with the rest of the people for an hour. Yep, the show was fashionably late.

Andrea Pompilio is a designer for Onitsuka Tiger’s clothing line. He presented a very cool collection and an amazing show with 40!! models walking down a U-shaped runway. The finale was very dramatic – all the models lined up in rows on a separate stage for a final view of the entire collection.

I really liked some of the pieces like floor-grazing dresses, sweats with industrial tape-like stripes and gladiator sneakers. I also loved the styling of the models especially the feather crowns.

After the show, we were all invited to an after party at IDOL in Aoyama. I ran into a couple of friends so we decided to check it out together. One of them told me that when he was little, Onitsuka Tiger were the uncool, everyone-has-it type of sneakers and Adidas was something of a must-have. ^-^ Well, the brand did really well since. Old, forgotten labels are rebranding now with these cool, trending new looks and smart marketing campaigns. Look at the Birkenstock for crying out loud. Yes, they are still ridiculous but yes, I bought a pair this summer. ^-^

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Before the start of the show – Andrea is finalizing models’ positions on the stage.

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My favorite dress in my favorite color. ^-^

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Interview with the designers after the runway show.

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Ran into sisters from howtwolive.com again.

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With my friends after the show.

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At the IDOL, Aoyama

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Amazing sticker art! The artist was creating the famous Shibuya crossing out of small colorful stickers.

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KBF RTW SS2015 runway show

KBF RTW SS2015 runway show was the opposite of Alice Auaa extravaganza – it was super simple, super clean, presenting ready to wear separates with minimal design. I like this kind of clothes because it doesn’t overwhelm me. I can express my point of view by styling simple layers in my own unique way. With complex, costume like garments, the artist makes all the decisions for you, you are merely transmitting his point of view as your own. ^-^

KBF is a brand that is supported by one of the biggest retail groups – Urban research. It has an affordable price tag and wide availability across country and online. There are three designers working for the label – Mika Horagushi, Kana Sakurai and Yae Matsuoka. They implemented a lot of popular trends into this collection including back-in-style wide-leg pants, cropped tops, midi skirts and paper-bag-waists. Everything looked chic and effortless.

The final walk had an element of surprise. Instead of showing the major pieces of the collection, the designers chose to dress all models in the same outfit. I was so excited to see such a witty finale and with Okamoto Tao walking that night, the show was everything I have hoped it to be.  The brand may be oriented on the mass market but it is pretty serious about its commitment to quality and design.

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After the show I ran into Lucia and Ksenia – Tokyo multitalented darlings who are not only beautiful but also very smart.

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Thank you Lily from hashtagbylily.com for giving me the opportunity to see this fabulous how.

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Alice Auaa SS2015 runway show

Alice Auaa is a brand created by a Japanese designer Yasutaka Funakoshi. Since 2012, its runways shows have become quite a sensation – it was what people talked about and anticipated the most. Alice Auaa clothes is always dark and scandalous, oriented on sex and fantasy and more often than not borderline costumey.  It does have a very narrow range of customers but there are some big names among them (Lady Gaga) and they do tend to stick around. ^-^

This SS2015 collection was as dramatic as ever. The runway was so dark, it was hard to see let alone take good pictures of models. The background music was very creepy. At some point I imagined myself observing a cult ceremony and wanted to get out of there. There was very little I liked about the clothes or the atmosphere of the runway but I do have the utmost respect to such passionate devotion to this bizarre niche of fashion.  I never mind people expressing themselves through shocking appearances. They show their point of view and I get to be entertained. It’s a win-win every time. ^-^

The show was 30 minutes late so by the time I got out of there I was emotionally and physically drained but attending KBF runway after that gave me a much-needed boost of energy and inspiration. Read about KBF runway show in my next post. ^-^

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