You may remember our first It Girl feature from Tokyo featuring Caca Co. My friend Rajiv (who is the designer of the Tokyo based fashion label SAWHNEY) styled and produced this second It Girl Tokyo feature for Third Looks.
SAWHNEY collaborates with emerging fashion model and blogger Yuri Nagakawa combining several men’s pieces from the debut Spring Summer 2013 collection with her distinctive boyish/cute style in a series of street snap looks in Shinjuku “Golden Town”. A contributing model for S Cawaii magazine, Yuri has been regularly featured on many famous Tokyo fashion street snap sites including Stylearena.com and Fashionsnap.com.
Firstly, tell us about your background.
I dreamt about working in the fashion industry for a long time. At first I planned to start working in the industry after I graduated high school. However, my parents wouldn’t allow me to move outside my prefecture if I didn’t go to college. So I started studying for the entrance exam to get permission from my parents. While studying in college, I proactively attended many events and enjoyed my life to the fullest. Also during this time I started modeling. By my third-year in college I had finished all my necessary credits for graduation so in my final year I completely absorbed myself in modeling work. I feel that if you have the strong willingness to try anything that is available to you then there are no bounds to what is possible. During my childhood, I studied Japanese tea ceremony, flower arrangement, and gymnastics and enjoyed expressing myself, the colors of nature, and Japanese culture. I think those experiences made me who I am today. I’m happy that I can express myself through modeling. In addition, I pass along the days inspired by various other creative individuals.
What about your life as a fashion model and fashion blogger?
As a fashion model I express what is demanded from the client. As a fashion blogger I express my own individually. It is important to have people (fans) who support my taste.
Cap – UNIF
Shirt – Kenzo
Pants – Zara
Shoes – Who’s who gallery
You’ve become famous for your unique boyish and cute style and recently have been featured on many prominent Tokyo fashion snap sites. When and how did your unique style develop?
Perhaps I’m a bit greedy since I choose both boyish and cute styles? (Laughs) I’m quite particular about adding kitsch and ironic elements into my own fashion. As a model, I strive to be a model that has an element of irony and is outside of orthodox standards. Back when I entered college, I was anxious that my style was too over the top. So I wore casual clothes to initially fit in but soon changed back to my own unique style. Which reminds me, when I was a elementary school student, maxi-skirts were in fashion, At the time, I wore a vivid orange mermaid like skirt and walked around town. I remember everyone talked behind by back. What’s the point in everyone supporting conventional fashion?
Shirt – Sawhney
Pants – Zara
Gold necklace – Topshop
Beaded necklace – Sawhney
Ring – GYDA
Shoes – Who’s who gallery
Recently what styles and brands do you like?
Recently I’ve taken notice to girlish-cute brand “lilLilly” and COMME des GARCONS 2013 Spring Summer collection. I also really like K-pop, particularly BIGBANG’s fashion. There is no close relationship between my interests rather I like all types of fashion.
See the rest of the feature after the jump
I made a trip to Toronto over the holidays and had the pleasure of meeting Rose while there. My friend Joel introduced us and once I found out about all the projects Rose had on the go I knew I had to profile her on Third Looks. I was struck immediately by her outgoing and positive energy but even more impressed by her accomplishments. She c0-owns a vintage shop called Bridge and Bardot and runs a studio where her and a small group of friends work together on their art.
How did your personal style develop into what it is today? Do you have a style philosophy you subscribe to?
I don’t really know anything about the fashion world. I like clothes a lot. I’m really cheap and have always had to be creative by vintage shopping. Most of my clothes are under $10 and all of them have been altered. I get bored of my clothes and cut them, stud them, dye them, and make them new again. Like every girl, I’m a sucker for a cheap H&M item every so often, but I make sure to re-style it by pairing it with vintage. I also love sweatpants. A LOT.
Explain the concept behind Bridge and Bardot and how it got off the ground.
B+B began with 2 years of pop up sales out of our storefront studio. Sisters, Gurjeet & Gagan Bassi and I transformed used clothing by up-cycling it and presenting it in a fresh new way. With promotional photoshoots and weekend long pop up parties, we got a reputation for having one-of-a-kind affordable clothing, and our cliental eventually pushed us to get a permanent location. Our boutique has been open for 6 months now. We pair local handmade accessories with our vintage pieces, in a one-stop-shop.
Where did your love of vintage clothing come from?
I’ve always been a Goodwill hunter, it’s such an exciting way to shop. It’s also a more sustainable and responsible way to shop. It also allows you to get creative and see the potential in a $3 shirt. My mom is an amazing seamstress and I was influenced by her growing up – always altering my clothing. The incredible fabric and quality of vintage clothing is incomparable!
More after the jump
IT GIRL TOKYO: Caca Co
Third Looks is going international with our latest IT GIRL feature. I’m proud to introduce Caca Co from Tokyo. It is a dream for many women to work in the fashion industry and one that Caca is pursuing to the fullest in Asia. A special thank you goes out to Rajiv Sawhney for producing this feature and making it look fantastic. He will be contributing content from the Japanese fashion scene and documenting his personal journey in the creation of his own namesake label, Sawhney. -Rocky
Words by Rajiv Sawhney
As a budding menswear designer, I had the opportunity to meet Caca, a half-Japanese/half-Chinese fashion student and model through a personal connection several months ago. We quickly became friends given our mutual interests. What struck me most about Caca, aside from her cute looks, was her maturity at a still relatively young age and her deep knowledge and appreciation for the Tokyo scene. Naturally, when I bounced ideas with Rocky about a potential IT GIRL TOKYO edition, Caca immediately came to mind as the first candidate. With the help of fellow friend and photographer, Daisuke Ito, we took to the streets of Daikanyama to bring you the first IT GIRL TOKYO.
Firstly, can you give a quick introduction about yourself?
My name is Caca. I was born in Xian, China and grew up in Tsingtao. My first time visiting Japan was during my sophomore year of high school. I also spent time in Fukuoka and Kyoto for high school and undergraduate college. Currently I’m a graduate student at Bunka Fashion College (http://www.bunka-fc.ac.jp) studying fashion management. To enrich my life and social experience I’m also a part-time model and love to party, enjoying the energy of fashion through Tokyo’s nightlife.
What made you want to come to Japan to study? Did you always want to study fashion?
I wanted to come to Japan for a very simple reason. Since I was a child, I loved Japanese animation and wanted to become an anime artist. However, after studying animation for two years at Kyoto Seika University (http://www.kyoto-seika.ac.jp), I realized that it would be difficult to transmit my points of view and concepts to audiences unless I became an animation director. Meanwhile, like other young girls, I started to take more interest in my make up and styling and gradually became more interested in fashion. Ultimately fashion became my true calling and I quit animation school to study at Bunka. Even though my friends were surprised by my decision, they continue to support what I’m doing. I also want to thank my father for forgiving my willfulness and for continuing to support me.
Outer: Men’s Number (N)ine black destroyed leather napoleon riders jacket
Top: Loveless (http://www.loveless-shop.jp)
Pants: MNG Collection
Shoes: Christian Louboutin
Hat: Loveless (http://www.loveless-shop.jp)
You are now finishing up your final year at Bunka Fashion College. How has the experience been?
Every day I’m exposed to new things and the curriculum is very meticulous and professional. Students can elect to study from a wide variety of majors including design, styling, etc. I chose management as my major. Unlike other majors, we have the opportunity to hold shows, visit shops to do field surveys, and go on the streets to take photographs. The most interesting aspect of my studies has been the analysis of seasonal trends and the emphasis on the brand creation process. My dream is to start my own brand.
You also recently interned at Mark Styler, a major Japanese women’s wear company. Can you describe the experience?
Mark Styler (http://mark-styler.co.jp) is the parent company of my favorite Japanese fashion brand, EMODA (http://www.emoda-japan.com). Through an introduction from my professor, I was honored to receive a month long internship program at the Mark Styler head office to help with their 2012 Autumn/Winter show. Through this internship, I was able to gain a deeper understanding of the industry, particularly the unglamorous side of the business. In order to execute a perfect fashion show, every department was extremely busy. I worked in the media department and learned it’s not enough to have a good designer or pattern maker, but also an excellent media department to successfully market a brands image. Frankly speaking, very little differentiates fashionable Japanese brands these days. Therefore, how the media/publicity department markets a brand’s image has become increasingly important. After the fashion show was successfully completed, I realized that all the hard work was worth it. It was a very memorable experience and a great learning opportunity.
Outer: Men’s Dries Van Noten camel wool double breasted coat
Top: Men’s Sawhney navy lace and velvet button-down dress shirt
Skirt: The Dayz Tokyo (http://www.thedayztokyo.com)
Shoes: BeLLE (http://www.belle-co.jp)
What are your thoughts on Tokyo fashion culture? What are the differences you see compared with China?
In Tokyo, each area has its own characteristic style. For example, in ladies fashion there is Shibuya 109 style (http://www.shibuya109.jp), Harajuku style, Aoyama/Omotesando luxury style, Ebisu/Daikanyama pretty style, etc. In addition, each style has been shaped by the area’s history and culture. China has witnessed rapid growth recently but for the older generation unique characteristics in Chinese fashion culture did not exist. Rather, fashion was described more broadly as Korean fashion, Japanese fashion, European fashion, etc. Compared to China, Tokyo fashion has much more individuality and originality, which I think is amazing. That said, I think the Japanese are losing to the current generation of Chinese in terms of foreign intelligence gathering and global fashion interest.
What about menswear? What do you find attractive or interesting about modern Tokyo menswear?
I think women are constantly unfaithful in their loyalty with brands. But for men, once they fall in love with a brand, they can be a loyal customer for a very long time. As a result while women’s wear emphasizes design and styling, menswear puts more importance on quality material used and quality of construction. In a private or work setting, women look at a man’s sense of taste rather than his trendiness. A man that wears well made clothing or shoes gives a woman a sense of security which is a plus. I also think there is a sense of charm. I feel that Tokyo men put a lot of emphasis on styling and coordination. Tokyo men take advantage of accessories, hats, etc to show their style.
Outer: Men’s Mihara Yasuhiro rabbit & goat fur down vest
Parka: Design Works
Shoes: Christian Louboutin
You received a job offer to work for Mark Styler after graduation. What are your thoughts about the future?
That’s correct. I received a job offer in Mark Styler’s global operations department, but recently I’ve been considering the business potentials in China and felt that working in Japan would deter me from my dream, so this month I declined the offer. After graduation, I plan to return back to China and I’m thinking of starting my own brand. At any rate, I think it’s necessary for me to understand the local Chinese market and develop the necessary personal connections.
Special thanks to Daisuke Ito of Trival Inc. for taking time out of his busy schedule to help with the shoot and more importantly Caca for modeling the men’s outerwear during this frigid Tokyo winter. Best of luck in your future endeavors!
Styling: Rajiv Sawhney designer of Sawhney (http://www.sawhney.jp)
Model: Caca Co (http://ameblo.jp/cocaca)
Photographer: Daisuke Ito of Trival Inc. (http://www.dai-ito.com)
It’s been some time since we’ve featured an ‘It Girl’ here on Third Looks. In case you haven’t seen the other It Girl features, I’ll recap what the label means to me. These are girls who are are free-thinking, charismatic and stylish. These are the girls the world needs more of; the ones that eventually be be at the top of their respective fields.
With that out of the way, I’d like to introduce you to Rachel Hodin. She’s a New York native who grew up in the heart of Manhattan. The first time I met her Rachel was wearing 6″ Wheat Timberland Boots and pulling them off perfectly; a good start to any friendship. Rachel’s warm presence is balanced by a healthy dose of cynicism, in other words she’ll politely cut through the bullshit. Rachel is extremely well read AND will show up to your function in an effortlessly fashionable ensemble. What more can you really ask for out of friends in this city?
Rachel is currently a freelance writer for the The Local (New York Times Blog). You can read her very first published book review HERE.
A special thanks goes to Rebekah Seok for photographing this feature.
Gap Denim Jacket
Ekhaus Latta pink fuzzy irrationally expensive cropped top [Ed.Note Rachel's Description]
Chloe Sevigny for Opening Ceremony black and white Checkered Pants
Tsumori Chisato socks
Vintage Gucci loafers
What sparked your initial interest in clothes and fashion?
I guess it all started with Clueless. Traveling with my family at a young age–to paris and london–definitely helped as well.
I’ve never really been interested in fashion, per se, more so just looking good. I went to college in DC and that definitely inspired me, though in a reverse sort of way. i guess i was inspired to look good by all of the terribly and monotonously dressed people in DC. (hope I don’t offend anyone)
You’re able to really mix designer items with vintage items and make it look very seamless. It’s a pretty delicate balance so how do you make it work?
I don’t tend to focus on the actual designer–just the piece at hand. If I like it, then I’ll wear it. Some of the pieces I like end up being designer, some end up being vintage. Most of my purchases are on impulse; I can’t seem to delay gratification.
How do you think growing up in New York has influenced your style?
I think the city’s diversity and freedom of expression (encouraged by my parents) influenced me the most. I would find a “trend”–or my idea of one–and cling onto it for dear life. I became obsessed with the color neon green and made sure that every subsequent clothing purchase for the next year was of that hue.
Probably my biggest fashion influence growing up in the city were my best friends’ moms. Seriously, it’s an untapped fashion resource in this city.
I’ve been exposed to high fashion since I was very young. I’ve grown up with a ton of privileged kids and most of all what i’ve learned is that privilege does not amount to style.
Vintage Rifat Ozbek Dress
Acne Leather Jacket w/ Detachable shearling Collar
Balenciaga white shoes
When you put together an outfit is there an you generally start from? (ie a jacket, shirt, jeans or shoes?)
Not to toot my own horn or anything, but I’ve recently amassed a dope collection of pants, so lately that’s where I’ve been starting.
What are some of your favorite places to shop in the city?
Narnia, Assembly NY, Brooklyn Flea, Edith Machinist, Opening Ceremony
Who’s style do you admire and look up to?
Don’t really look up to anyone’s style in particular. I admire people who dress for themselves, who incorporate their culture and background into their sartorial choices and, of course, my friends’ styles.
Words by Rocky Li
Photography by Rebekah Seok
Styling assistance by Jimmy Jimeno
Knowing Galadriel is to know that she might just meet you for coffee in ‘cat face.’ If you hang out with Galadriel and her friends contrarian behavior is to be expected and adored.
Galadriel’s introduces the M.O. of her gang of ‘untouchabelles’ on her blog.
‘We draw cat faces on our faces and laugh too loudly in libraries. We have business cards and spikes on our shoes and jackets. A good pun will make us love you forever. A cheesy come-on and you’re done.
We read, of course.
We have our own places.
We have our own projects and our own goals and our own lives.
We are not your girlfriends.’
While that short-form manifesto may seem slightly intimidating, Galadriel is anything but. Her easy-going and free-spirited demeanor is reflected in her sense of style. For this shoot I lent Galadriel a couple button-downs that she absolutely fell in love with. ”
Supreme SS11 Floral Print Liberty Shirt
I asked Galadriel to share her personal sentiments on style.
“Caring about what you wear is not a vanity thing, it’s a creative thing.”
Comme des Garcon SHIRT paneled button-down
“I don’t care to amaze people or to intimidate people. I want my outfits to endear me to people.”
Photography by Rocky Li
The concept behind ‘It Girls’ has been in my head for some time. ‘It Girls’ are free-thinking, charismatic and stylish girls who unabashedly live life. Third Looks aims to bring these dynamic individuals to the forefront and document a point in their lives.
It Girls’ will be a regular feature on Third Looks profiling girls who if you haven’t heard of yet, you soon will.
The first ‘It Girl’ I am featuring is my friend Alyssa. We met at a apartment party I threw about two years ago and we’ve become good friends since. In that period I’ve watched her go from New School undergraduate student to the assistant of Amy Astley (Editor-in-Chief of Teen Vogue) and the contributors editor at the magazine. Her ambition and fierce independence are balanced by her disarming cheerful personality and quirky sense of humor. I’ve titled my shoot Brooklyn Spring as the fresh air and warm sun perfectly reflected the changing season.
I have always respected Alyssa’s ability to wear clothes her own way without regards to the trends of the moment. Having often commented that she loves my wardrobe and many men’s pieces in general, I decided to style her in some pieces from my personal wardrobe. When asked about her personal philosophy on style , she told me
“I think clothes have little to do with fashion– and almost nothing to do with style. It’s not a radical statement: style is innate. If clothes weren’t a social necessity, I probably wouldn’t wear them at all.”
You can find Alyssa on Twitter.
Undercoverism Rider Leather Jacket
Vintage Floral Dress (Alyssa’s own)
Supreme Camo Field Shirt
‘Internet Fame’ White T-shirt
Supreme ‘Metal-Plate’ Snapback
Supreme Paisley French Terry Hoody
Undercover x Uniqlo UU Cardigan
Number (N)ine ’9-Lives’ T-shirt
Undercover x Uniqlo UU Hooded Blouson Jacket
Undercoverism Knit Sweater
J Brand Jeans (Alyssa’s own)
Supreme leopard backpack
Nike Free 2.0(Alyssa’s own)
See more photos from this shoot on the Third Looks Tumblr page.
Photography & Styling by Rocky Li