Japanese fashion has its sales down to an art, adverts run on television weeks before they are scheduled to occur, their customers are bombarded with offers they cannot refuse and all this is done with a creative energy that the West could do well to learn from. It is not a simple matter of putting up a gaudy sign and boasting about drops in pricing that always strikes me as a sure-fire way of cheapening your brand, rather they make an event out of it and use it as a chance for you to preview the incoming season, all the while shifting old stock. LaForet Harajuku’s Grand Bazar is probably the most exciting of all the sales, using it as the stage for live performances and spending more time merchandising the outside of the store than any other time of the year. It is a sale that we always attend (and patronize) each time, so this time we thought we would snap a couple of pictures on our shopping spree so you can get a flavor of what those of you outside Japan are missing out on – sorry!
The sale runs to the 23rd for the record, so you still have plenty of time left, and it is worth knowing that prices get ever lower as the days tick by, but also beware that on the first day hundreds queue up to be the first through the door – in short, the good stuff never lasts.
This is the fabulous outside where the LaForet tree has been taken over with balloons and cheaper brands take it in turn to occupy the premium real estate at the front. I remember one time when h.Naoto took over this outdoor place and was selling samples for a 1000 yen a shot: the entire rails were stripped in a matter of minutes.
There is always some kind of entertainment going on that borders on the incomprehensible, but certainly gets you excited about opening your wallet.
LHP had taken over the Container space with a limited shop. Julius was down by 40 percent on my visit.
But this shop was doing a dizzying array of offers, it is always a bit bewildering and heavily targeted to existing fans of the brand rather than coaxing new ones in.
Bargains ahoy at Joyrich!
The one thing to be wary of is that it gets obscenely (read Comiket) crowded at certain times, my advice is roll in on the evening of the first day. That way there will still be plenty of people and entertainment, but about 10 percent of the people.
It is also loud! Very loud. Staff will bellow offers, offer time sales or 10 percent bonuses for paying in cash etc. You think you will stay calm, and yet it is so easy to get caught up in it all.
Here I had reached my destination – GR8.
And found my treasure trove…
Hope you enjoyed that and if you are in Tokyo, you still have a couple of days to make your visit.