Mon Lily by Yumetenbo like in the earlier post is one of the new actual stores by webstore Yumetenbo. With its collaborations with Larme magazine the new brand really piqued my interest. In those post I’d like to talk about their style for Spring 2015 and also how they’re not typical Yumetenbo.

 

Discount meant bad quality

I first bought from Yumetenbo back in 2008. I was back in the States and thirsting for some gyaru clothing. Their price point was cheaper than gyaru brands so I took the plunge. I ordered three items and when they arrived with some other gyaru brand items combined in a shopping service (before Yumetenbo had an international store). Looking at the items vs what I had ordered from other brands I couldn’t help but feel disappointed.

Sure my items were cheap but everything looked cheap. Hazy prints, cheap buttons,threads not properly cut, the cheapest lining, if any was provided on sheer items. The quality was bad. I wore once or sold most of my items. Partially it was my fault for buying too trendy, but the rest was just crap. I never bought from Yumetenbo again. I’d rather pay the $10-$20 US more for something nicer.

So when Yumetenbo announced they were doing a collaboration with Larme magazine and opening an actual store I wasn’t too excited. I mean sure I could see the clothes in person but cheap lining and bad quality were going to be even more apparent in person. And that seemed to go against what Larme magazine is about.

 

Larme and Yumetenbo odd partners

 

Larme magazine features a bunch of brands that are in Sweet magazine that are known for accepting a high price tag for higher quality. Like Mercury Duo, rosebullet or Dazzlin. Or they’re what are known as DC Brand in Japan,  brands founded in Japan and people know they’re paying a high price tag for original designs. (I’ll talk more about DC Brands when I make another Japanese fashion history term post). Like brands such as Milk, Cannabis, Honey Salon by Foppish or lilLilly.

Sure there’s the occasional Galstar item or such, but Larme isn’t really focusing on discounts. More a quality core wardrobe that fits a lady.

In my mind there was definitely a gap between Larme’s look and Yumetenbo. I mean money rules all so I figured a magazine could overlook its price point and stoop down to cuddle with a discount brand. Instead I was surprised to find quite good quality from mon Lily.

 

mon Lily clothing review

 

mon Lily price points

Winter prices averaged. Summer is usually cheaper. Liz Lisa’s average price points in parenthesis for perspective.

Onepiece: 3,000-8,000 yen with the occasional 2,000 yen onepiece. Medium price 4,500 or $42 (LL 9,000 yen $88)

Tops: 2,000-7,000 yen. Higher price is usually a sweater or cardigan. Average 3,000 yen for a shirt $28 or 6,000 yen for cardigan $56 (LL 6,700 yen $64)

Pants: 2,000-4,000 for shorts. Average 3,500 yen or $35 (LL 7,000 yen $68)

Skirts: 4,000-7,000 yen with the occassional 2,000 yen skirt. Medium price 4,500 yen or $42 (LL 7,000 yen $68)

Shoes: 6,000-8,000. Medium price 7,000 yen or $66 (LL 11,000 yen or $106)

It seems they’re doing a hybrid between super discounted and pricey Liz Lisa.

 

mon Lily sizing

the brand sizes it’s items as Japanese Medium and Large. These sizings are consistent with an American or Euro X-Small to Medium, depending on vanity sizing. Sometimes the sizing is only Japanese Medium meaning a US Small.

The skirts and dresses often have elastic in the waist and flare in the hips allowing for variable sizing. However some of the dresses and skirts have no elastic and waists stop around 68 cm for those.  Being a web brand they have kindly listed very detailed sizing if you’d like to take a peak. Also listed on each item is whether there are pockets, what type of fastening and buttons.

 

mon Lily purchases

 

 Purchase one – Puff Sleeve Ribbed Knit

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monlily-fluff-shirt

 

 The full name of this shirt and I’m not going to lie is the “Fluffy Puff Poodle Rib Cut-Sew Top” (link)

I bought the Off White color like Larme’s Risa is wearing.

Personal Shots of the item

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Mon Lily have these nice sewn in tags that are gauzy and not irritating.

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The tags are held together by a non-plastic and the tag itself is a pleasing shape. It was a 10% sale at the time (Pre Christmas wind up) and I paid 4,140 yen before tax which translates to $34 USD right now.

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Ugly photo but it shows two of the things I really like about this top.

1) How nice and detailed the ribbing is.

2) The elastic band under the puff rib to sit on your arm right and actually make it puff.

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The poodle part is quite layered and shimmery without being flashy.

I think I will get a lot of use out of this in Spring when I don’t have to cover up the sleeve details with a coat.

Purchase Two – Fluffy Cardigan

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monlily-bear-cardigan

Officially called the “Fluffy Tunic Cardigan” (link) I call it my bear cardigan. :rila:

Personal shots of the item

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Laid out it’s just like rolling through pink meringue peaks.

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They put the tag nicely on the side and it’s inside the seam so no tag issues.

It was 6,000 yen but again I was there for 10% off so 5600 yen so $47 USD. I would’ve paid so much more. It’s both warm, cute and soooo comfortable. It feels so soft. I wore it on the plane ride home. On chilly nights I put it over roomwear. And I do occasionally go outside in it (insta coordinate of it). And bonus it makes a pretty background for insta photos.

The material fuzzed the first day I used it and it did transfer some fuzz to my clothes, but every wear after that I was good.

So my total was around $80 USD I bought two things I’ll wear for a long time. I’m extremely satisfied with the quality and details of mon Lily.

While I don’t know if the rest of Yumetenbo has changed I know for sure this brand’s items are really nice. Their clothing is more simple than Liz Lisa, but I think the quality is same or better than Liz Lisa. And since mon Lily has an international shipping site through rakuten I will probably buy much more.

mon Lily has Spring trends

I always think now is kind of an odd time to be shopping. Sure it’s cold and Winter is still going to be around for a while. But brands have done their Spring exhibitions and will start rolling out parts of their collections January 1st. Luckily this brand already has some items in stores that could make great pieces layered under winter items, but ready to shine on their own in Spring.

monlily-coordinates

Just a peak into Spring looks. I expect gingham to be popular again. Every brand I think will feature an off shoulder top or dress. Especially like the one shown with a gathered waist and tiered top. That is the biggest universal trend I’ve seen thus far. Although with instead of Midi skirts for summer there’s a lot of knee-length styles peaking out for Spring. Lots of floral printed skirts too knee and midi.

Although its key focus in Larme style, I feel this brand is very Seiso with its simple looks and calm colors. And I wonder how much of clientele is there for the Larme style and how much is there for the Seiso look, admittedly I feel there is an overlap.

 

In case you missed it this is a three part quick series of posts about mon Lily and Yumetenbo. 

Part one: Yumetenbo’s niche fashion forrays and mon Lily’s Ikebukuro store

Part two: mon Lily review and picks to buy now for Spring 2015 (this post!)

Part three: (tomorrow) mon Lily Ikebukuro shop staff and images of mon Lily from Larme magazine

 

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Mon Lily ikebukuro

I’ve talked about Yumetenbo / Dreamv(international store) in the past and it should be a well known name to those who like Japanese fashion. However they’ve really been changing lately. Mon Lily by web megastore Yumetenbo / Dreamv and has many collaborations and close ties with Larme Magazine it can be easily called Larme-kei as its main style. Larme-kei is part of the niche fashion markets that Yumetenbo is trying to cover. In this post I’m going to talk about their niche styles and more closely about their brand mon Lily.

Yumetenbo’s Past Market Model

Yumetenbo is known for latching onto trends and producing cheap second wave fashion from popular gyaru brands. High brands inspire gyaru brands who in turn inspire Yumetenbo/Galstar and other discount brands. It’s a cycle that has been happening for years. Personally I think they’re one of the reasons La Parfait shuttered its doors since they produce lots of hime items for cheap.

They’ve also tried to grab onto any new trend back with Mode Gyaru and Mori Gyaru. But recently they’ve decided to go a different way.

fashion-cycle

Very watered down version of the fashion cycle. Yumetenbo has been on that Discount brand ledge. Now they’re on a whole different one for many of their niche brands. Niche meaning they don’t have to appeal to everyone or even copy what high brands are doing. Instead they hope to find a core audience looking for a specific style.


 

yumetenbo-niche

Yumetenbo Produced Brands for Niche Fashion Markets

Instead of replicating what gyaru brands have been doing they’ve decided to create their own. And it’s not mass appeal but through niche fashion and being the producer. Below are some of their small style groups they’re trying to profit from.

Niche fashion forrays by Yumetenbo

:bow: Classic Yumetenbo Himekaji brand Dear My Love

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Diable Baiserr’s newest coordinates.

:bow: Former agejo now Oneegyaru brand Diable Baiserr

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Plumprimo trendy newest styles. From Onee to Ank Rouge styles.

:bow: Plus size brand Plumprimo which is still going strong.

primstone-yumetenbo-dreamv

:bow: The very popular dance and idol style with JK (junior high) girls now has a kid’s brand called Prismstone. Interestingly they say “look like an anime heroine” as their tagline for Prismstone. The sizing is done in kids sizes which is 120cm to 160cm. I’d talk more about this brand but I don’t think it fits my core readers. But still, interesting!

lnk-yumetenbo

LNK for NeoGal was their first Western-style lookbook shoot using only white models. Ways they’re trying to replicate the NeoGal look. Different from Yumetenbo’s usual method of using Japanese models for webstore catalog shots.

:bow: Their newest is their LN-K brand for NeogalWhich adds yet another brand to Neogal. Unsure how this unproducer backed brand will thrive but the items look cute if not slightly K-Pop style rips.

:bow: And Larme Magazine collaboration brand “mon Lily”  Which this whole post was supposed to be about…


 

 

From Net to Brick and Mortar

Japan has a very confusing relationship with technology.

For example, Japanese cellphones in the beginning were the more diverse, personalized and functional in the planet. I left for Japan in 2007 with a Razr. In Japan there were QR codes and even paying with your cell. But the iPhone and Android have completely taken over and yet you’ll still see a lot of people in Japan with flip phones.

On the website end in 2007 a ton of websites made themselves completely mobile friendly and it was the main way of browsing the net for a lot of Japanese. Net shopping became huge. But the iPhone swept over Japan very quickly and yet shopping websites were slow to change. Two years ago I could go onto popular gyaru brands and only get their very retro and extremely limited mobile site.

Now brands are embracing technology and even the last two gyaru brand hold outs OneSpo (fashionwalker) and DIA (mobacolle) are now on big fashion webstores. 

So what is interesting to me is Yumetenbo has decided to open brick-and-mortar shops.

The first one is called the webshop’s name: Yumetenbo (actually called by kanji 夢展望) in HEP 5 in Osaka. I curse myself for not stopping by when I was in HEP 5 3 weeks ago. But instead enjoy photos from the official hep5.

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Quite a large store housing all brands from Yumetenbo. Looks about the size of many WEGOs for comparison. I do think they hope to battle WEGO in size if they can for a different market of buyers.

 

The second one is mon Lily in Ikebukuro P’ Parco which opened in August of this year. Which is why I started writing this post and from now I’ll only talk about it and continue with it for the next few days.


 

 

Mon Lily in Ikebukuro P’ Parco

mon Lily was launched last year with the Larme magazine audience in mind. Larme has done many collaborations with brands but mon Lily is its biggest cohort in fashion.  When mon Lily opened their first actual store in Ikebukuro Parco a Larme model event was held and there was a Larme collaboration novelty given away for those who purchased enough.

I find this to be a very interesting step in Japanese fashion, it’s about as close as a magazine and a brand have gotten. But they still seem to be separate with Yumetenbo running the show.

ikebukuro-p-parco

Ikebukuro P’ Parco itself is an interesting venue. I’ve previously snapped a Candy Stripper shop staff there. The mall itself is separate from the train station and a bit behind it away from the popular Sunshine Street walk. P’ Parco is trying to revive itself with a Nico Nico cafe and trying to attract more stores, especially those with a aomojikei feel to them like Candy Stripper, Jouetie and others.

ikebukuro-parco-monlily

Outside the main Parco building in Ikebukuro signs trying to direct people to the updated P’ Parco including Mon Lily.

Mon Lily is located on the second floor of P’ Parco and the shop staff kindly let me take photos of the shop.

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The entrance to the very small shop.

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A view of the full layout of the store. Just three clothing racks and a flat display for shirts.

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All the sweet and soft colors of Mon Lily for fall.

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Some of their dresses and cardigans neatly hung up. Their flatform shoes have been one of their best selling items.

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Their Christmas display along with Larme issue 13 open to the Mon Lily layout.

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Another angle of the Christmas tree because I thought it was so cute and replicable. I can’t have a Christmas tree this year because I have a kitten, but I really want to do it next year when Olaf calms down.

 

This is going to be a three parter on mon Lily that will continue tomorrow. The second part will be about their clothing and styles for Winter and also a review of the pieces I bought along with shots from the current Larme magazine featuring mon Lily. The third will be shop staff photos.

Why don’t I blog as often? Well every Lego game on the XBOX and I keep writing these incredibly long posts that I work on for several days. So I may be slower but hopefully more thorough?

 

 

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plumprimo5

Plumprimo is a new plus size brand in collaboration with plus-size magazine LaFarfa by gyaru mega webstore Yumetenbo.

Japan especially women’s fashion, for the longest time had this “freesize” or “onesize” mentality about clothing. Either items come in Small and Medium (XS – S in western sizing) or “onesize”. Onesize is completely non-representational of how Japanese women actually look. Slowly there’s a lot more sizing and choices for the size XXS to the size 6L girl. This season not one, but two brands are out for plus sized girls! I’m going to talk about both of them, and a brand made for petite girls as well. Because onesize doesn’t fit all.

Marshmallow? Try Pocchari

Plus-size term in Japan is usually pocchari (ぽっちゃり) meaning chubby or plump not the marshmallow term that’s jumping around the overseas media.  Or simply ぽっちゃ子 pocchako or chubby girl. ぽっちゃカワ is a term La Farfa has been using to describe chubby cute. La Farfa holds “ぽちゃティブ祭り” Pocha-tive Matsuri as a way for fans to enjoy themselves with the models. I love the play on words Pocha-tive. So…positive. :smiley:

LaFarfa magazine:

Plumprimo  (プランプリモ) is a collaboration with LaFarfa magazine (ラ・ファーファ) A magazine solely for plus-sized Japanese women fronted by icon Naomi Watanabe who is producing the other plus-sized brand coming out, PUNYUS.

LaFarfa is neither solely gal nor anything else, it’s a mix for all young plus-sized girls. It’s on its fifth issue, but its first came out last March. So it’s not exactly bimonthly. Personally, I’ve found it hard to find in big magazine stores (I looked!).

One of the best ways to check out LaFarfa is their youtube channel


Their introductory video

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Some LaFarfa spreads. The bottom on is from their newest issue which came out this month from the adult brand As Know As using their L-size items.

All their blogs are on the LaFarfa site: http://blogri.jp/farfaofficial/
Some models instagrams: Ruby http://instagram.com/ruby1234 and Ui Ando http://instagram.com/andoui513

Plumprimo

Plumprimo details:

stores: 0 – web only
website: http://www.dreamvs.jp/pc/index_ppm.html?ebis_ac=link
overseas store: http://global.rakuten.com/en/store/dreamv/
parent brand: Yumetenbo
sizes: 3L to 6L
theme: Official theme is: “ぷにモテ甘辛トレンドSTYLE” Po ni mote amakara trend style. Po from pocchari of course. Meaning to have an attractive spicy sweet trend style for chubby girls. Cute, sexy, and beautiful looks. A broad variety of trendy fashion.

Plumprimo’s initial brand offering is seven items to buy: three dresses, one jacket, one pair of shorts, a loose t-shirt and a top and pagging set. However, judging by their their teaser shot (above) there is more clothing coming up!

 

plumprimo-outfit1 plumprimo-outfit3 plumprimo-outfit4plumprimo-outfit2 plumprimo-outfit6 plumprimo-outfit5 plumprimo-outfit7

Yumetenbo x LaFarfa definitely went gyaru with Plumprimo. Onee, kurogyaru, agejo, and sweet style mix all represented.

:stepup: Pros: A big pro for this brand is Yumetenbo is selling the same items in S-LL sizes (sleeveless dresss here)! Admittedly a bit less selection, but it’s not a design choice where chubbier means less stylish or requirements on how they should dress. Happy for that plus-positive side!

:sage: Cons: A small complaint is the three dresses above their waists are only available as 3L or 4L. That’s not exactly the 3L-6L the brand promises.

Japanese sizing is usually one or two down from Western sizing so 3L-6L is XL/2L-3L/4Lish Western. All items are available for pre-order shipping out mostly at the end of this month.

Plumprimo is available on the Global Rakuten site of Yumetenbo (Dreamvs) http://global.rakuten.com/en/store/dreamv/ so no Tenso required.

Again, purchasing power shows how much these brands will last. MA*RS did a plus size line 3 years back and it couldn’t last. So if you like it, buy it!