Firms are cashing in on the success of Japan’s women’s soccer team ahead of the World Cup final, offering everything from dolls dressed in Nadeshiko kit to uniforms for dogs.
And for fans of a certain kind, there’s even branded toilet paper.
Nadeshiko, as the team is called, faces off against the United States in the Women’s World Cup final on Monday.
Blue replica uniforms have long been a requisite when rooting for the national team. Tokyo-based Famous Co., which makes canine outfits, has given the trend a twist by making frilly ones for female dogs.
It started making them during the Women’s World Cup in 2011, in which Nadeshiko quickly garnered laurels and a national following.
The president of Famous, Sanae Muto, said there had been requests before the tournament for Nadeshiko dog outfits, but the company was unsure the investment would pay off. “Their popularity was not high, so we were kind of hesitant,” she said.
As the team advanced, customers started asking if there were Nadeshiko uniforms for dogs and the firm came to realize there was a business opportunity, Muto said. It now makes frilly tutus, perfect for any Japanese pampered pooch.
She said the Nadeshiko dog outfits are not exactly hot items in between World Cups. But as the season approached this year, more stores placed orders, so it prepared 20 times more than it produced in 2011.
Tokyo-based toy-maker Tomy Co. released a limited-edition Nadeshiko Japan model of the popular Licca doll series in May. Somewhat reminiscent of Barbie, Licca is 22 cm tall and wears the blue uniform with number 12. She also has a blue ribbon on her head. Only 7,000 units are being made.
“Interest and inquiries from customers about the product have been increasing as Nadeshiko Japan has advanced,” said Maiko Murayama, a Tomy spokeswoman.