So on my formspring, someone asked me to talk about Cocolulu. Which is great I’m all for suggestions of what to write about here, or random questions! Bring ’em on! :sparkle2:

To talk about Cocolulu is really to talk about the early trends of gal.


The history of gal: The term kogal (j wiki) started to be used in the early 1990s when teenagers started showing up to clubs. They were called kogals because they were in highschool (koukou) and because they were small/childish (ko). So they started in the clubs and wore the style that existed in the early club scene of the 90s. So while they were younger, they weren’t really setting their own fashion trend. This influx of people into the club scene made for huge clubs in Tokyo, both Avex run Velfarre and Juliana Tokyo (fansite).

The club style of the time was bodi-con and idol and these highschool girls dressed like that. Bottom left is the early days of bodicon, top right is the reopening of Velfarre in 2003.
You can still see feathery fans used in gal clubs today.

Then Amuro came along:

It all started in 1996 with Amuro Namie, a superb, 17-year-old siren and graduate of Okinawa’s Actor’s School. An excellent dancer, she performed on stage in a strapless bra and then in a pant suit with long jackets. Her look–golden skin, mother-of-pearl hair and carefully tweezed eyebrows–immediately became all the rage, launching the “tropical” style. Amuro Namie also introduced the vogue of “platform boots,” which she even wore in the middle of summer to make up for her short stature. – Sirens of Tokyo

Even in bodycon women were not necessarily tanning themselves, especially since the adult women doing this were mostly office workers (OLs). Now there is a bit of argument on whether Amuro latched onto ganguro or whether she originated it. The fact is Amuro Namie was just tanned because of her Okinawan descent and lifestyle, and it was also a craze for younger girls to tan and start enjoying surf clothes.

The rise of Cocolulu

In comes Cocolulu

Some Cocolulu history: Cocolulu is as old school gal as you can get. Starting in 1998 with a surf style. Cocolulu was a big part of the early gal surf scene, but quickly adapted to the style that Amuro preferred. Since its gal shift, they’re a brand directly aimed at teens. Even today most Co&Lu lovers are under 20. It’s a brand that’s not really trying to grow up as Emoda, Egoist and Lip Service are. It’s all about being a teen and enjoying the surf and sun. :sparkle:

Their t-shirts and parkas were the first to become popular, but their logo jeans which were introduced in 2003 are now very stylish. The Men’s side of Cocolulu opened last Spring in 2009. some info via

The amazing thing about Cocolulu is how much they’ve stayed the same throughout the years. While AlbaRosa became disgusted with the yamaba crowd using their surf wear and closed shop promising to never make another hibiscus print, Cocolulu has be doing the same through so many gal changes. While they may be more considered an Amekaji (American Casual) brand now, I think they’re more just their own style with bits of Amekaji thrown in the more hade (flashier) they’ve gotten. :star:

Some early Cocolulu from Egg magazine (date unsure) Not really different from this year

Randon fact: Cocolulu is one of the only 109 brands popular enough to have its on wiki page

Breaking down Cocolulu Style

webstoreblog | I don’t think it’s official, but a terribly cute mom and daughter Cocolulu blog can be found at cocolulumini

Let’s show how CocoLulu is now…

Now it’s known as being very “hade” aka meaning being flashy and colorful.

I would say this is a pic to show how heels and plaids are also popular and how the prints have gotten “hade”, but well… it’s really just to show how cute Egg Models Hi-bou, Kanako and Romihi are :oops:


One of the great things about Cocolulu is their wide range of sizes. Their pants can go from 24 to 28 (or really a 74 cm low waist to an 82 cm low waist).

Cocolulu 109 to overseas

malignita and I were working on a w*c 109 to overseas collab post, when I asked her if she could help on the Cocolulu one and she yet again proved her gal angel skills by finding some amazing pieces! I’m seriously unworthy, the girl is a genius at this! So if you love this, thank malignita :hearts2:


Engrish trucker cap – Yesstyle – $25.00
Hilarious Engrish trucket cap – Yesstyle – $25.00
Engrish baseball cap – Yesstyle – $25.00


Julius Print Hoodie – Karmaloop – $34.00
Print Hooded Pullover – Yesstyle – $32.00
Letterman Jacket with Hoodie – Yesstyle – $28.00
Track Jacket – Forever 21 – $19.90
Cleveland Hooded Jacket – Forever 21 – $22.90

Bright plaid – Delias – $24.80
Light plaid – Yesstyle – $22.00
Scoopneck Engrish tee – Yesstyle – $14.00
Longsleeve Engrish tee – Yesstyle – $18.00
Raglan Engrish tee – Yesstyle – $22.00
Glitter Graphic tee – Victorias Secret – $19.50
Stars and stripes tank – Forever 21 – $12.90
Heart printed tank – Victorias Secret – $24.50

Baggy Jeans – Yesstyle – $20.00
Levis 501 Rather ripped – Urban Outfitters – $78.00

Multi-colored hightop – Pastry – $49.99

Comic logo belt – JCPenny – $14.99
Or… any of the colored belts by LRG – Karmalopp – $20.00

Babyphat logo – DrJays – $6.99
RocaWear Baddest Chicky – DrJays – $9.00

Phew… so much color :sparkle2:  Not exactly my style, but it’s pretty fun to see when done right :upheart:

Kogal info sourced from several academic papers including:
:star2: The Emergence of Trendsetters for Fashions and Fads: Kogaru in 1990s Japan by Tadashi Suzuki and Joel Best in The Sociological Quarterly Vol. 44, No. 1 (Winter, 2003)
:star2: The sirens of Tokyo. By: Jolivet, Muriel, UNESCO Courier, 00415278, Jul/Aug2001

Finger Lickin’ Santa

Are you enjoying your Christmas? Did you get your Christmas KFC?

Crispy for Christmas
Families order weeks in advance to share KFC in Japan. Yes I’m weirded out by it, too. KFC and Japan Christmas info here and here.

New Years Fukubukuro

EDIT: Since it’s going to be 1/1 soon in Japan,  both girlswalker and love-ex have new bags up. Love-Ex has me-jane and Golds Infinity. Girlswalker has those plus Mar*s, Duras, Lip Service and more.

The tradition of New Years is so huge in Japan and other than Hatsumode (first visit of the temple) and eating soba (most soba shops are packed), the concept of fukubukuro is everywhere. Fukubukuro are lucky bags and although 109 stores have them, so does most every apparel business in Japan. Most make-up counters do it as well, and you can often get some serious deals at make-up counters.

Each bag usually cost 10,000yen or around $100.00. Some stores offer bags of $200, $100, and $50.00. Others do multiple different lucky bags of $100.00. It’s a mess, but a happy shopping mess. ✌⋰˚◡˚⋱✌

My lovely friend Sebastian is nabbing me Lip Service, w<3c, and Glad News bags. I admit I’m tempted by both the Liz Lisa and Valentine’s High fuku bags because they’re so cute. ༶❤_❤༶

109 shops have been setting up reservations for their bags, but some just release the day of. Fashionwalker still has some of their bags available, while 109 shops one their website have also been releasing them.

LoveEx which has its own worldwide shipping service also has a few lucky bags up. Maybe more will release on 1/1.

EDIT If you don’t like knowing or are only used to buying through shipping services that use Y! auctions, after 1/2 many should be up and opened showing all items. Or if you’re especially looking for your favorite store like One*Spo or DIA who don’t offer on-line sales of fuku.

Also, for those of you IN Tokyo, while 109 is closed on 1/1, Lumine EST and ALTA are both open so you can try your luck at both of those which have Gilfy, Mars, Swordfish, Valentines High, Cecil McBee, Lip Service and more.

Jagura‘s 109 bag is Kitson-like and does a cute plushy tiger in honor of 2010 as the year of the tiger.
Adorable! It almost convinces me to get the bag.

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