As the festive season encourages consumers to splash out and treat themselves, there's both good and bad news in the fashion industry.
Samuel Thomas is a fashion writer and lecturer at Bunka Gakuen University. He regularly contributes to The Japan Times, among other publications, and has his own site TokyoTelephone.com. He is currently pursuing his research in fashion at the University of Tokyo.
For Samuel Thomas's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:
As the year ends, Japan's fashion landscape finds itself facing big changes in street brands, department stores and sales tactics.
Tokyo fashion week's battle for identity has always been between that of the runway and the fashion on streets — has the event finally found a happy medium?
As the new sponsor of Tokyo's fashion week, e-commerce giant Rakuten may appear lowbrow — but in times of rising subculture trends, that could work in its favor.
Collaborations, ethical statements and flashback trends — is Japanese fashion going through an identity crisis?
My mentor in all things fashion, a Parisienne buyer who prefers to remain unnamed, once confidently asserted in her usual grandiose manner, "You know that fashion is over when designers start relying on irony." She was referring to the "it's cool because it isn't, ...
It's early days of Reiwa, but so far, Japan's fashion industry looks set to continue playing it safe in the new era.
Though it has been 12 years since Junko Koshino's designs hit Tokyo fashion week runways, the acclaimed designer shines her spotlight on Fukushima handicraft artisans.
As the end of the financial year draws to a close, now is the season when fashion companies restructure their retail portfolios, with shop closures making way for new shoots to pop up in the following months.
The cliche, albeit an increasingly true one, that style trends are here today and gone tomorrow continues to define the extremes of the Tokyo fashion scene.