Barbie The Eternal Fashion Icon

Barbie ExhibitionBarbie The Eternal Fashion Icon exhibition held at Tokyo’s Seibu department store is a decadent display tracking the development of an icon from its start as the German fashion doll Bild Lilli in 1955 to Mattel’s refined Barbie doll. Throughout her journey she has been a reflection of the times with plenty of style and fashion hits but also with a few misses just like the rest of us.

モード オブ バービー展

Barbie ExhibitionTo see the many extravagantly chic outfits and accessories meticulously made in miniature for dressing Barbie and the different personas that she assumes through them was incredible. I’m tempted to bust out a selection of my wardrobe’s finest and get fully dolled up in vail, fur and jewels but the sweltering Tokyo heat forces me to be a bit more sensible unfortunately.

モード オブ バービー展Afternoon suit Barbie 2012, Walking suit Barbie 2012.

Barbie The Eternal Fashion Icon ExhibitionEvening Splendor 1959.

Barbie The Eternal Fashion Icon ExhibitionSilver Serenade 1971, Ken and Go-go 1966.

Barbie Exhibition Seibu TokyoLisette Barbie 2001.

Barbie The Eternal Fashion Icon ExhibitionMermaid gown Barbie 2013.

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Trendy Fashion for Pet Pooches

Dog raincoatShopping for your pet pooch who’s trendy to the point of rivaling you, has never been as stylish or fun as it is here in Tokyo. Colorful raincoats, pet IQ training toys, doggie carrier bags that look like luxury handbags and bedazzled leashes are just some of the must-haves.

Pet toys

Pet IQ Training Toys

Dog CarriersStylish pet carriers that look like luxury handbags but with breathable fabric inserts to the sides to make for comfortable travel.

Dog FoodBanana, apple, avocado and cheese flavored treats are just some of the many options available in the dining department for your pet.

The Art of Ikebana – Lesson 1

Ikebana VasesI’ve recently begun the journey towards honing the skill and art of Japanese いけばな (ikebana) flower arranging. In my journey I’m fortunate enough to be surrounded by some of the best ikebana artists here in Tokyo to help instruct and inspire me.

Ikebana with Linnea NilssonAs I’m just starting out my first lesson is to create a basic upright style moribana arrangement where the stems need to be precision cut and precision placed at fixed angles on a spiky kenzan. There are three main parts to the arrangement which are the shin placed at a 10˚~15˚ angle, soe at 45˚, and hikae at 75˚. After the three main stems are perfectly placed it’s time to accessorize with jushi subordinate stems that add volume and depth to the arrangement as the kenzan is not supposed to be visible.

Ikebana MaterialsThe studio is filled with interesting add-ons that can make fabulous arrangements truly spectacular despite what they might look like carelessly piled in the studio corner. But I’m far from the stage where I get to go off textbook so it’ll have to be something to look forward to in the future as I progress.

Ikebana Materials

Ikebana VasesThere are also many interesting vases in the studio but again those will have to wait until I get a little further along.

Linnea Nilsson's IkebanaHere’s my first ikebana arrangement in its completed stage. What do you think?

All Things Hello Kitty

Hello Kitty iPhone ShellIn Tokyo you needn’t look far to find Kitty-san especially considering the sparkle that many of the Hello Kitty accessories are packing such as the heavily bedazzled cell phone shells. However, the fun doesn’t need stop there as real enthusiasts could easily fill their home and cover themselves from top to toe with everything from Hello Kitty themed televisions, fans, biscuits, toiletries, clothes, handbags, sneakers, umbrellas, etc.

Hello Kitty Bling

Hello Kitty iphone shellsBut don’t think that Hello Kitty caters only to young girls as Japan’s かわいい (kawaii/cute) culture means that it’s more often adults donning a sparkly Hello Kitty iPhone shell with matching fashionable fake nails in pastels with bows, glitter and pearls while out and about.

Hello Kitty ToiletriesCollagen wash, acne wash, cleansing wash, pore cleaner and hyaluronic acid are just a few examples of the vast range of kitty toiletries that can be purchased with a Kitty motif on. Nail clippers, tweezers, scissors, and mirrors are also available in pink and with Hello Kitty on.

Hello Kitty FanIf you already have a fan but it’s not one of the special Hello Kitty ones you can simply purchase a mesh covering to jazz up your plain white fan and covert it into a Kitty’s head complete with ears and whiskers.

Tokyo Bvlgari Italian Jazz Lounge

Bvlgari Italian Jazz Lounge Tokyo

I’ve now returned home to Tokyo, Japan and to fête the occasion I was indulged with a wonderfully luxurious evening spent at Bvlgari Ginza Tower. The evening included exceptional live Italian jazz music by Francesco Lomagistro & Berardi Jazz Connection Quintet enjoyed in great company and with flowing Dom Pérignon vintage champagne alongside a selection of small bite creations by Michelin starred executive chef Luca Fantin.

Francesco Lomagistro & Berardi Jazz Connection Quintet

Francesco Lomagistro & Berardi Jazz Connection Quintet

Bvlgari Italian Jazz LoungeFrancesco Lomagistro & Berardi Jazz Connection Quintet was full of energy and put on a terrific performance.

Bvlgari Italian Jazz Night with Linnea Nilsson

Bvlgari Italian Jazz Night with Linnea Nilsson