Tokyo Fashion City – A Guide to Tokyo’s Trendiest Fashion Districts by Philomena Keet, with photography by Yuri Manabe (Tuttle, 2016) is a fantastically detailed fashion bible, perfect for anyone with an interest in Japanese fashion, street fashion and Japanese culture. It is packed with colourful pictures of young fashionistas on the streets of Tokyo, reminding me of FRUiTS, the fashion magazine.
The book covers all of the main districts of Tokyo: Harajuku & Omotesando, Shibuya, Shinjuku & Ikebukuro, Koenji, Nakano & Shimokita, Daikanyama & Nakameguro, Ginza & Marunouchi, Akihabara & Okachimachi and East Tokyo, complete with maps highlighting shops and boutiques in those areas, with everything from worldwide names such as H&M and Zara through to more unusual stores such as Disco Nails (amazing nail art!).
Every kind of fashion seems to be included, from the unique-to-Japan unusual trends such as gyaru and decora, through to traditional festival clothing and even cosplay. It’s really nice to see a book which doesn’t just focus on the weird and wonderful aspects of Japanese fashion, but also covers the day-to-day fashion and traditional wear as well. There is a vast amount of information in this book, and I imagine it would be invaluable to anyone wanting to visit Tokyo with the purpose of purchasing the latest Japanese fashion items. This is more than a book of beautiful fashion photos (although it is that, and the photography is fantastic), and this is more than just clothes. This a book filled with information about wear to buy the latest fashion, what’s popular and why, covering the whole of Tokyo by each unique district.
Of course, fashion is something which is constantly evolving and changing, and I’m sure in time this book will be a snapshot of the past and not as current and useful as it seems today. But right now this is the book to own if you’re a Japanese fashion fan.