Denim-clad models strutted along Tokyo’s glitzy Ginza district Saturday as its main street was turned into a catwalk to showcase Japan’s fashion industry.
The Ginza Runway event was jointly organized by the trade ministry and private-sector entities around the theme of Japanese denim, and was the first-ever outdoor fashion show staged in the high-end shopping area.
The event also was part of the Creative Tokyo project, which aims to promote domestic industries and turn the capital into one of Asia’s major creative hubs.
Decked out in jeans, jackets, dresses and kimono created by popular designers and fashion students, with almost all outfits incorporating denim in some form, models sashayed along 100 meters of denim carpeting Ginza’s upmarket main street, passing by pricey emporiums as songs by Lady Gaga and others blared.
But the models didn’t have the improvised catwalk all to themselves. A number of people were invited to participate as guest models, including children from disaster-hit Sendai and luminaries such as industry minister Yukio Edano and actress Ryoko Yonekura, herself a former model.
“Most top brands around the world recognize the quality of Japan’s denim products, but not many Japanese are aware of that,” said Nobuyuki Ota, a merchandising officer at Matsyuya Co. and one of the main organizers of the event, adding the fashion show was staged to promote Japan’s recovery from the March 2011 disasters on the world stage.