Fashion in Lumine is buzzing in Ikebukuro despite the so-called gloom of Tokyo
Lee Jay Walker
Modern Tokyo Times
According to reports in many media outlets, the fashion scene in Tokyo is feeling a little gloomy and the same applies to people having a good time. However, in Lumine in Ikebukuro, Tokyo, trade and shopping is buzzing and recent serious issues appear to be distant. Therefore, unlike the impression of many media agencies outside of Japan, Lumine in Ikebukuro was vibrant and full of energy.
Indeed, the photo image of Ginza in the New York Times in the article called Less Appetite for Luxury did not resemble the Ginza that I witnessed and it must be remembered that certain changes are only to be expected. However, if you visit Ikebukuro, Shinjuku, Shibuya, and Ginza, then you will see a multitude of shoppers and fashion conscious individuals who continue to visit these vibrant parts of Tokyo.
It must be remembered that many companies are closing earlier because of constraints on power and other factors. Therefore, it is true that areas look quieter at night but the reasons are based on necessity and for every photo which is published which shows doom and gloom; you could alternatively show a different photo which shows energy and vibrancy.
I visited Lumine in Ikebukuro on March 26 and the crowds were very large on each floor and clearly people were browsing many high quality companies in this shopping complex.
Young ladies were dressed in their finest and browsing around elegant and stylish shops in Lumine. Each different shopping area was full of life and all staff members were dressed so stylishly. Therefore, you could see one beautiful lady after another and clearly they were focused on high quality fashion and the finer things in life.
Different shops within the complex had different color schemes and styles. Stunning striking red garments, followed by exquisite pale blue dresses and an abundance of choice.
The hordes of female shoppers also matched the stylish and elegant atmosphere of Lumine which is modern, sophisticated, buzzing, radiant, and stylish.
Indeed, if you feel gloomy and despondent about the recent earthquake, tsunami and nuclear crisis in Fukushima, then Lumine is a magical place to visit because of its energy and panache.
Yes, I am sure that shoppers know full well that many people are suffering in Iwate, Miyagi, Fukushima, and other badly hit areas; however, in order for Japan to get back on its feet and to rekindle the economy then it is vital that normality returns.
This is not based on selfishness or shallowness; after all, I am sure that nearly all the shoppers will have given donations, offered prayers, phoned distant friends, and a minority will have offered to be volunteers.
Yet it is vital for the psychology of Tokyo and Japan to be focused on the future, while understanding the seriousness of now. The economy needs to tick, just like restructuring and helping individuals and companies which have lost everything.
Therefore, the atmosphere of Lumine was based on vitality and energy and it showed you that “the Dunkirk spirit” is alive and well. After all, so many doom-mongers want to paint a picture of desperation and foreboding; however, all I witnessed in Lumine in Ikebukuro was hope, beauty, and people returning back to normality.
Yes, they know that suffering is happening and that some prefectures are in crisis. However, just like the Japanese government invested trillions of yen into the money markets; then it is also vital that shoppers return to buying and helping the economy because rebuilding Japan needs many different areas to work together.
It may seem that fashion is trivial given the current reality of tens of thousands of people dying in Fukushima, Iwate, and Miyagi. However, unless the economy picks up then the crisis will only deepen and while trade may suffer in the short-term it would appear that a pick up will eventually follow.
Therefore, the atmosphere in Lumine in Ikebukuro was a huge boost from the daily news about radiation and how Japan faces serious hardship.
If people outside of Tokyo want to see the real images of Ikebukuro, Ginza, Shibuya and Shinjuku; then maybe the international media is the last place to search if you want to find the real answer to the current reality of Tokyo.
In Lumine in Ikebukuro it was all about energy, stunning displays of ladies fashion, workers being primed in beautiful clothes, female shoppers taking deep care about their looks and fashion sense; in truth, it showed the real spirit of Tokyoites and the freshness of a city which is famous for quality fashion.
http://www.moderntokyotimes.com (please visit this website)
http://www.fashion-j.com/E/trend/201010.html (3rd article from the top shows some images of Lumine in Ikebukuro.)