fashion / ファッション


avocado dye

months keep passing between my blog posts while life keeps going at light speed. like my previous post months ago, i’m playing catch up! it’s better late than never, right? >.<


during 2020, the year of COVID-19 quarantining, i had gotten so many projects done! this is one of them 🙂


“Botanical Colour at your Fingertips” by Rebecca Desnos

for the longest time, i was curious about avocado dye.  i came across some posts and accounts that talked about natural dyes, which led me to finding this book, Botanical Colour at your Fingertips, by Rebecca Desnos.  it’s such a beautiful book with lots of pictures and step-by-step instructions.  i’m pretty much a beginner dyer (i did a little in fashion college), and the dye turned out very satisfactory.  before purchasing her book, i had read her blog post, when researching how to store avocado pits and skins, and to mordant (a method of prepping) the fabric.


overall, the process took a couple of months to complete: from mordant (a way to prep fabric to take dyes better), which is recommended to let sit for at least 1 week; extracting the dye, which takes a few hours on the stove and another 24 hours to let sit; and finally, dyeing the fabric, which you let sit another week after drying the dyed fabric.  every step of the way was so exciting to see the outcome and smelled delicious along the way (the soy milk i use has a very sweet and fresh scent).


  1. setting the fabric in the soy milk mordant.  i believe the fabric is 100% cotton (but it was so long ago that i purchased it…), if not cotton, i’m pretty sure it is a natural fibre with the lighter test to prove.
  2. after setting the fabric overnight in the refrigerator (to prevent the milk from spoiling in the summer heat).  then let dry.
    repeat the soak and dry process 2 more times.
    i let the fabric sit in a paper bag (closed well) for about 1 month.  the paper bag kept the fabric dry, but prevented bugs (the soy milk smelled delicious, and if i could smell it…).
  3. to store the avocado pits and skins, i washed the flesh off really well and stored them in the freezer.
  4. adding water!  i bought an aluminum pot specifically to dye in, as the book recommends.  apparently, the aluminum helps as a mordant as well, without having to include aluminum in the dye itself.
  5. simmer and stir, simmer and stir, simmer and stir.  then, cool.
    じっくり煮込んで、混ぜ、煮込んで、混ぜ、そして冷ます。[AVOCADO DYE] SIMMERING
  6. after breaking apart the softened pits and skins, simmer and stir more.  then, cool again.
    その後、また煮込んでは混ぜ混ぜを続ける。そしてまた、冷ます。[AVOCADO DYE] SIMMERING
  7. the pits and skins have softened quite a bit and mash really well.
  8. i simmered and stirred one more time.  after cooling, i strained them through a muslin cloth layered on top of a sieve.
    こし器にシーチングをかけ、染料をこす。[AVOCADO DYE] STRAIN
  9. look at that mush!  the avocado pits contain lots of tannins which help to fix the dye.
  10. after letting the dye sit in the pot for 24 hours, the dye is complete.  then, in goes the fabric!

ta-da!  for a first time, i was looking forward to having a perfectly imperfect, organic finish.



aside from this scarf, i have one more batch of dyed fabric to hopefully sew a sundress in the future!



[fashion trend study] S/S 2009

it’s been almost A YEAR since my last fashion trend study (*gasp*)!! i have a whole stack of old magazines pages, waiting to be collaged and studied! today, is about 2009 spring/summer.

[ S/S 2009 ]

– what happened in 2009 / 2009年のファッション出来事 –
michelle obama and the one-shoulder dress / ミシェル・オバマとワンショルダー・ドレス
yellows & golds / 黄色とゴールド
exotic bohemian cont’d / 前シーズンから引き続きエキゾチックボヘミアン
dresses / ワンピース
color blocking / カラーブロック
shoulder accents / アクセントショルダー
pops of color / カラー・ポップ
big accessories / デカめアクセサリー
geometric folds & pleats / 幾何学プリーツ
harem & skinny ankle pants / ハーレムパンツ & 足首細めパンツ
old school denim (dyed & damaged) / レトロなデニムディテール (クラッシュや染めなど)
watercolor florals / 水彩画フローラル
bows / リボン

one of the biggest trends of 2009 spring/summer, was the one-shoulder dress. a major highlight would be then first lady, michelle obama’s inauguration ball dress, designed by jason wu. also, dresses became a staple in the wardrobe, layering them over leggings, pants, or on their own–in a sense, an expression of the continued bohemian trend from the winter. i have a lasting impression of origami folded details in skirts and dresses. and my number one favorite, that i still consider a staple of my own, is the harem/carrot top pant with skinny ankles.


(left to right):
one shoulder
geometric pleats + watercolor floral
bohemian / tribal layers + tiered dress + retro denim harem pants
shoulder accents + exotic brooches + tunic + carrot top pants
bold & bright pops of color + bulky accessories

handmade denim sleeve

i’ve been spending the past couple of months going through my stock of fabrics and materials, and boy do i have lots of them that have accumulated over the years since fashion school. i had been putting off tons of projects that i bought fabric for and never got through to realizing. some projects i have finished, some have become things of my mind’s past, and in their place new ideas have formed–one of them being this denim sleeve.

この数ヶ月間、服飾学校時代から溜めてきたたくさんの生地や材料を整理していました。その量も半端ではありません。。。^_^;; やっと完成したアイデアもあれば、もう作らないであろう物もあったり、代わりになる新しいアイデアもたくさん考えています!完成した物の中で、今日はこのデニムのスリーヴを紹介しま〜す。

having been raised in seattle, i have a soft spot for starbucks and tully’s coffee, which are both found in tokyo. unlike in the states, most people use public transportation in this country. thus, our love for bags that are just big enough to cram all of our essentials in (representing people like moi). granted, there are many a cool, stylish girl that can seem to leave the house with a compact clutch holding just a smartphone (in a smart case that carries their train passes and credit cards all-in-one, or even better–apple pay), a tiny wallet, and lip tint. i mean, what about 3 packs of tissue, water bottle, makeup bag, notepad, pen, handkerchief, ipod, extra smartphone charger, etc….?? my point being: having to carry a personal tumbler or mug to my local caffeine joint, is way too much luggage than i already have to carry–especially for that unplanned stop-in to kill time.


although it’s not as green as having a personal tumbler at hand, i decided to make this fabric sleeve to replace the brown cardboard sleeves made of recycled material. yes, they are eco-friendly, however, not so much if they’re going straight back to waste after a couple hours of usage. there was a time where i would hold onto the sleeves for next time, but starbucks and tully’s have differently shaped cups, and i order anywhere between a short and grande, which would result in carrying around 4 sleeves at a time (at least starbucks uses the same size for tall & grande #marketresearch). they all started cluttering my bag again and became inspiration to make an all-inclusive sleeve for 3 different sizes at two different cafe chains.


the result, i patched together some of my favorite leftover denim scraps (these are
another story on their own!) to sew up a denim sleeve that works for all three sizes at both stores (yay velcro!)! even more, i used quilting to function as insulation, working better than the cardboard.


it’s pretty cool to say, “no sleeve please!” and the barista goes, “umm… please be careful, it’s very hot” and BAM! i flash my swanky chic denim sleeve (brush that dirt off my shoulder, uh huh). before it all goes to my head, i understand that my next step is to create a portable, collapsable cup that i can carry around (or someone else can do the work for me? kickstarter?)… in the meantime, i’ll happily flash my washable sleeve that will be reusable for years. =)

レジで、「スリーヴはいらないです」と伝えると、「ええ、とても熱いので気をつけてくださいね。。」とキョトンとされたり戸惑われたりされます。そういう時に、ランプの下でドリンクの受け取りを待って、自信たっぷりにスリーヴを広げるのが気持ち良いんです!笑 こんな小さな事で快感を得るような私ですが、確かに手持ちタンブラーを超すエコフレンドリーな事はないですよね。いつか、もっとコンパクトに手持ちできる入れ物ができるまでは、このスリーヴを自信満々持ち歩きます!

have a great cup of caffeine!

p.s. please do let me know your thoughts about this sleeve and if i should sell it on either or both of my shops!

fire . water . wind . earth

this is my newly designed personal logo.
“personal”, meaning, not for my shop or brand; it’s me.


there are many symbolisms included in this logo.
today, i want to write about “fire, water, wind, earth”.


the reason why i wanted to post about this, is because Earth is in pain. this year in japan, we barely had a rainy season, until august came around and we had 20+ days in a row of rain. we finally got some sun and heat the past couple of days. then, we all complain that “ugh, it’s supposed to be rainy season and it’s super hot”; “it’s supposed to be summer but it’s always raining”; “IT’S TOO HOT”. WE keep complaining? what’s Earth got to say about all that we do to it?


in the last few days, there has been news in japan that major retail companies will be bringing their prices down in order to get the people to purchase more. a commentator mentioned that there was someone from a fashion company complaining that flea market apps are preventing sales.
in the western world, “sustainability” is a word we hear very often. in japan, it’s still a very new concept and industries don’t seem to appreciate it. in the world fashion industry, seasons are going haywire with “resort” collections squeezed in between, the “see now buy now”, and the resistances against either.
with the over-production, consumption, and accumulation of STUFF, first-world people are over-using our Earth’s resources, at which rate will not last for future generations of all worlds.
even then, there seems to be a “must buy the new trend of this season to fit in” mindset embedded in the japanese people. hundreds of fashion brands here, mass-produce, mass-sell, mass-gets consumed, mass-leftover, mass-throw-away, and mass-add to the piles of trash we already have.
yet, there is some hope, because people ARE buying less and taking advantage of recycling or buying secondhand. so maybe, the people ARE considering “sustainability”. now the problem isn’t the people, but the companies who are still trying to encourage consumption. shouldn’t they be considering how to sustainably produce more than mass? have a goal to make less products rather than make more profit? if the production-consumption balance is off, maybe THEY need to change on their part, because encouraging consumption isn’t helpful for our future in the least.


now, back to the four elements. in order for all these companies worldwide to mass-produce, mass amounts of resources are being used.

[ E A R T H ]
mass trees are being taken down, mass earth being covered by factories, houses, high-rises.
with all our first-world trendy foods, mass soil are producing off-season, foreign foods, exhausting our soil and not able to provide nutritious produce.


[ W A T E R ]
mass water is filled with trash to make “land”, polluted with chemicals, dyes, and oil for mass-production. our Earth’s water is connected, which means radiation water is included in this pollution right? not to mention fracking…


[ W I N D ]
mass air is polluted with chemical emissions and exhaust fumes.


[ F I R E ]
simply put, mass fire (heat) is being used to create the pollution mentioned above.


without our trees, we have landslides; fracking causing earthquakes; less green more global warming–then we have people relying on air-conditioning to cool down, bodies don’t know how to cool naturally, our health and immunities gone out of wack…
unhealthy soil, pesticides make pretty but unhealthy produce. while our bodies ingest the little nutrition they try to process the toxins, exhausting our livers, and again affecting our health and immunities.
meat and fish are fed this too…
our bodies are already frantically trying to detox all the toxins that we take in via environment and food, we then go and add stress and sleep deprivation for the sake of making money to keep the economy running. see where i’m going? our bodies cannot battle disease anymore. and again i say, hurting the Earth ain’t helping the future of human kind.


that is why i’m writing this.
instead of helping the companies of japan and the world, we need to change our “need” for “the next new thing”, and think of the Earth and our future generations.
what IS the true meaning of wealth?
i’m not saying i grew up this way. but i ask myself everyday, “do i really need this?”
with all masses of so-called “organic”, local, domestic, imported stuff and foods, one can’t fully comprehend what is really good for their bodies or the environment. what you CAN do is consider trying to “do my best for my body and the environment”. it’s become my motto that i keep in the corner of my mind at all times.


[fashion trend study] A/W 2008-09

this month, my fashion trend study is for 2008-09 autumn / winter. this year had some of my favorit-est style trends (moto jackets, boho, mannish, sculptured shapes…. all of them!)!
今月のトレンドスタディーは2008−09年の秋冬です。見返すと、私好みのスタイルがまとまっていたシーズンに感じました⭐︎ ライダースジャケットやボヘミアン、マニッシュ、立体性のある洋服。。。って、全部のトレンドです;;

[ A/W 2008-09 ]

– what happened in 2007 / 2007年のファッション出来事 –
folklorian bohemian / フォークロアボヘミアン
military jackets / ミリタリージャケット
plaids, tartans, checks / タータンチェック、プラッド格子柄
leather (reptile, fringes, pony) / レザー(クロコ類、フリンジ、ハラコ)
statement items / ワンポイントアイテム
sculptured coats / 立体的なコート
seductive fabrics / 魅惑的な生地
mannish / マニッシュ
fake glasses and straight bangs were THE THING in tokyo! / だて眼鏡&パッツン前髪が東京の大流行!

unlike the trend-mix looks of the last year, in this season, single outfits seemed to stay true to one major trend. folklore-boho looks were a major trend, all thanks to gucci’s collection. while sculptured, structured outerwear stood out with louis vuitton and yves saint laurent. statement items added the finishing touch to complete a look–in the form of stand out blouses, bulky jewelry, sharp shouldered coats, and fully beaded/sequined tunics.


folklore bohemian | STRUCTURED

[folklore bohemian (from top clockwise)]
gucci, jean paul gaultier, jamin puech
yves saint laurent, limi feu, louis vuitton

leather | shiny | reptile | lace

[leather] (bottom left quarter)
louis vuitton | hermes scarf & hat, green jacket & sweater
[shiny] (top left and center)
swarovski (eye) | barbara bui
[reptile] (top right)
barbara bui bag
[lace] (bottom right)

[creema] denim + wool + knit upcycled clutch bag [SOLD OUT]


my most recent handmade item, is this upcycled clutch bag! there are only two in this world and i am so proud of them (only one will be sold)!! there’s a little story behind them that i want to share with you today 🙂


i teach english on the weekend, and one of my students and i talk about the importance of making clothes last (or rather he made me realize so: see my 2016 resolutions!). he tells me how he wears his clothes until they are worn thin and even then, he uses them as rags before tossing them. (side note: in japanese history, when materials and food were scarce, kimonos were used the same way: resized to fit children, upcycled into handbags or accessories, and eventually used as rags.) except, until this sweater–100% alpaca wool and made in ireland, it was the best quality–whose wool made him itchy and was unwearable. he told me that he had thrown this sweater away! i asked him immediately if it was still salvageable and fortunately it came into my hands.

after fashion college, i used to work for an italian clothing brand, where i was allowed to take home unneeded denim from pant alterations. i decided to combine this and the sweater to make clutch bags. two more things were needed though… instinctively i knew that pinstriped wool would be spectacular with it PLUS an “a-ha” moment led me to hand-weave a lemon yellow friendship bracelet specifically for the bag.





i added these super cute floral pin badges from the POOL AOYAMA (which closes tomorrow, march 21st, 2016 *GASP*) and “OMG” light-bulb brooch from niko and…. / 私のには、the POOL AOYAMA(明日、2016年3月21日閉店なんですー T^T)のピンバッジとniko and…の『OMG』電球バッジをつけて、ポップにしました。

the lemon yellow and silver friendship bracelet, lightens up the otherwise dark clutch, so it’s usable in the spring. denim and knit goes well with casual looks, while pinstripes go with cleaner minimal outfits. / レモンイエローとシルバーのミサンガでダークめのクラッチバッグが一気に明るくなるので、春使用でも全然使えます!また、デニム+ニットでカジュアルに、ピンストライプでキレイめにと様々なコーディネートで活躍するワンポイントになります。

in this illustration (by yours truly) / イラスト内のアイテム(私作です♥) :
short sleeved shirt / 半袖シャツ :
Acne Studios ready-to-wear SS16 “Morag pop white”
rusty orange skirt / パンプキンスカート :
mid-heel leather shoes / ミディアムヒールレザーシューズ :

in this outfit / このコーディネートのアイテム :
shirt blouse / シャツブラウス :
olive green gathered skirt / カーキギャザースカート:
slick mist shimokitazawa


come visit me in my CREEMA shop! peace . love . tokyo

SOLD OUT upcycled clutch!

CREEMA ショップをご覧ください!peace . love . tokyo

販売済み リメイククラッチバッグ!

h a v e  a  n i c e  d a y  / /  良 い 一 日 を

[fashion trend study] A/W 2007-08

it’s been nearly a month since my last post… and it’s nearly the end of february! i have tons of projects i’ve been starting, which i hope to share with you soon enough! meanwhile, here’s my fashion trend study for 2007-08 autumn / winter!

最後の更新から約1ヶ月が経ってしまいました!もう2月末!たくさんの新プロジェクトを計画している最中で、近々ご紹介したいです⭐︎ それはさておき、今日は2007−08年のトレンドスタディーをご紹介します。

[ A/W 2007-08 ]

– what happened in 2007 / 2007年のファッション出来事 –
the cat eye / キャットアイメイク
patent leather / パテントレザー
black on black outfits / ブラック・オン・ブラック コーディネート
biker rocker chic / ロッカーシック
40’s glamour / 40年代グラマー
nomad / 遊牧
stand alone coats / ワンポイントコート
the first michelin guide tokyo happened! / ミシュランガイド東京版が初めて発売された。

overall, there were a lot of contrasts within a look. for example, country + town (i.e. equestrian style boots combined with modern and clean styles), military + elegance (i.e. epaulet accessories or berets combined with fit and frilled blouses + tight pencil skirts), voluminous puffers in lady-like looks (quilted capelets), and black on black on black VS any kind of PURPLE & bold, beautiful, stand out jewel tones.


black on black | BOLD

[black on black (from left clockwise)]
donna karan, philip treacy for donna karan, burberry x3, aquascutum
chloe, louis vuitton, alexander mcqueen

country | equestrian | skirt suit | military | distinguished elegance | standalone + voluminous coats

[country | equestrian]
gucci x2
[skirt suit]
miu miu
ralph lauren
[distinguished elegance]
[standalone coat]
(a-line or trapeze coats)
calvin klein
[standalone coat]
(voluminous or cocoon coats)
emanuel ungaro