Fashion is self-expression. It’s one of the reasons why we love to people-watch, and one of the reasons why street style has become one of the defining photographic genres of our time. Few things are as inspiring as seeing the way people dress in their everyday lives (just ask Matthieu Blazy, who continually cites “the streets” as inspiration for his celebrated vision at Bottega Veneta).
Which is why we launched a new street style series that looks at what people are wearing in the coolest neighborhoods in countries around the world. In June, we tagged along as the photographer Vivian Kim explored the style of Brooklynites on a sunny day spent between Herbert Von King Park in Bed-Stuy and Fort Greene Park in Fort Greene, and the month before we discovered the surrealist sartorialism of Mexico City. For this installment, we ventured to Tokyo, where photographer and FRUiTS magazine founder Shoichi Aoki documented the style of Harajuku. Here’s what Aoki shared about the district:
“In present-day Harajuku, there are probably more foreigners walking around than there are Japanese people. They used to be watchers of Harajuku fashion, but now they are players; it’s a new movement in the neighborhood. In this story, there are many Chinese and Korean individuals who seem to enjoy and carry forward the Harajuku fashion of the 1990s and 2000s, rather than simply copying it. During that time, the fashion created by the young people in Harajuku’s streets spread throughout Japan; it was a time pre-internet, and FRUiTS, the magazine I launched, played a major role in it. Now, the Harajuku fashion of that era has spread worldwide, and this place has become a holy land for it.”