Just this bast week Glitter decided to put out Shibuya 109 English Guidebook. The thing is… it’s all in English! To make it worse, it’s distributed everywhere. From bookstores to conbinis. (edited cus I went ranty) But why in the world was it created and distrubuted? It’s not like English speaking loving gals are in the tons in Japan. We’re a tiny group!! I know Japanese love shirts with English sayings on them, but not a whole damned magazine! Its target audience is overseas, yet it’s filling the Tokyo area >_< WTF
The magazine itself is produced by Glitter, and continously gives off the impression of a Japanese magazine trying to look like a Western magazine. White backgrounds? Celeb cover? White models (who often look more frightening than gal)? It constantly misses the mark for me. It’s neither an English style mag nor a good laid out Japanese magazine.
It also has a two page spread on underwear. Western women tend to have larger frames and often grow breasts quicker and uhhh larger than Japanese women. A C cup would be impossible in those stores, which is a common bra size for Western women. Personally at 34D I’m seen as a freak of nature by Japanese standards. Japanese bras are just not a selling point for half or more of Western women >_<
…however it has many good points, beyond the pitfalls it steps into
Two page history of 109 and somewhat of gal
It brushes over some aspects and spikes of yester-gal times, but it does give a sense of history. Personally I didn’t know there was a competition in 2004 to bring new designers to the forefront of 109, and that one of my perennial favorites, Gilfy, won it!
Five pages of mostly shop-staff in currently in-store looks
Maybe I am biased because my two favorite shop staff: One*spo’s Kie-chan and Lip Service’s Mai-chan are in it. Aren’t they cute! Their personalities are just as cute. They are everyday gals dressed in the shop’s most current looks. Egg’s street snaps are often month’s old or showing only 1 or 2 shopstaff.
(see both below)
The rest of the magazine doesn’t really show styling that seems gal, but the shop staff are great models of a store’s stylistic direction. Instead of catalogs featuring Hoshiaya or Tsubasa, these people for regular shoppers are the face of a brand.
Don’t get me wrong, while I think the gal styling is off on this and they went at this magazine the wrong way, there is still a ton of useful information in here for the beginner gal.
I am sure this mag will get scanned, but for now browse below or all 36 images in a handy zip file: here (cus I <3)