Host fashion has always sat rather clumsily next to more typical Gyaru-O fashion, yes, trends have crossed over and I dare-say a host these days can get ways with a far more casual look than 5 years ago, but by and large the Host look remains somewhat unchanged by developments in street fashion. However, even if that rather fetishised Host Club image remains set in stone (or perhaps in an ice sculpture next to some million yen Champagne), it has been effecting street fashion to the point where it feels like the Host suit has well and truly hit the mainstream. Not only as a casual ensemble for the 109-2 crowd, but for Salary Men who just want to incorporate something that bit flashier in their uniform suits. The trick is that minus the massive hair and by toning down the accessories, what you are left with is basically a very fitted suit, slightly flared trousers, but all the shiny excess of success. In recession struck Japan it seems that this image of success is far more attainable than owning the real imported Italian suits and shoes that used to be the marking of a Kachigumi suited man.
At the same time aside from those who might not normally shop in 109-2 you have the street fashion concious who not only need an affordable suit for smarter occasions to match their normal style, but also might just want to wear a suit as a statement in itself – after all you never appreciate a suit when you are forced to wear one. That is where the 109-2 brands come in with their suit lines – the top guns for me being Buffalo Bobs Crystal and Gostar De Fuga
I can’t help but think that if this ever became the norm for your average Salary Man, then Japan would officially become the coolest place on this planet! And the best thing about it is that these suits are actually priced very similarly to the (lets be honest) dull suits, and they include all the fun modern additions like bands to keep your shirt tucked in, anti-creasing and water resistance. I am all for these alternative lines to brands, as it really does open up another look to you, as well as separating it from the original brand that might be somewhat intimidating for someone who is not familiar with the look.
Fuga offers a good amount of variety in their suits by offering fashion forward as well as crisp and sharp option – all with the great fitting you would expect.
All in all while you may feel like you have seen this look before on Hosts, it is great to see this style being extended to a much wider audience, which in turn puts a slight twist on it. I just feel slightly sad that I don’t get the opportunity to suit up more often.