Hello everyone and welcome to my blog! This is my first blog post and I’m incredibly excited to start sharing my adventures with you.
And what a place to start. This past weekend I attended a wonderful event called Hyper Japan. For those of you who do not know, Hyper Japan is a Japanese culture event that is hosted twice a year. It brings a taste of Japan to London and shares the latest in food, gaming, fashion, Cosplay, music and more! There’s loads to do for all ages and each person will have a unique experience and will be able to take away something different.
I love Hyper Japan, I’ve been attending on and off for the past four years, and I’ve even had a stall there with my boutique, Plastic and Bows. There’s a certain vibe to the event that makes it different from others I’ve been to; Everyone is really friendly, it’s really well organised and there’s so much to see and do that I never feel bored. My favourite part about Hyper Japan has to be the live stage and, of course, the shopping which is perfect for picking up something unique and discovering new brands!
This year I went for the full day on Saturday with my partner Ali. We wanted to focus mainly on the live acts and performers as there were so many that we wanted to see. I really love The Tobacco Docks as a venue for live performers; you go into a room and it’s just like going to watch a gig with one of your favourite bands. It’s really dark in there with black-out curtains so that you can see the stage really well and you don’t have interference from outside lighting. I think It works really well. In previous years they’ve held Hyper Japan in Kensington Olympia and the O2; for me, these venue’s didn’t work as well for live performers due to the open space.
So who did we see? We started off the day seeing Moso Calibration, they’re a super cute J-pop girl group, they have super cute videos and a unique style! They were a really fun way to start the day, they had loads of energy on stage and were Kawaii with a rock chic edge! You can check out their YouTube here: Moso Callibration
After Moso Calibration we had some time to kill so we decided to start looking round the stalls and went to see some of our friends. As much as I love the Tobacco Docks as a venue for the live performers, if any of you haven’t been there before, it’s one of the most confusing venues to work your way around! I’ve been a couple of times and each time I’ve successfully managed to get lost, whilst missing out tons of stalls and then discovering them much later on with not much time to go round. The place is completely maze like, but I feel like next time I might be able to get my bearings (third time lucky maybe?). That aside we did manage to find Roxie Sweetheart, Artbox, Tofu Cute and the Dreamy Bows stalls that were close by. All these stalls are super Kawaii and absolutely dreamy to look at and some of my favourite stalls at Hyper Japan! I may have even treated myself to one or two things from Artbox and Roxie Sweetheart!
(caught in the act shopping- so many pretty things, I couldn’t choose)
(I’m wearing my sailor moon dress that I purchased from Dreamy bows last summer at hyper Japan, My sanrio YRU cut out shoes, falling star clip from 6%DokiDoki (you can now purchase 6% from Dreamy bows!) choker and hair clips from Roxie Sweetheart.)
Ali and I continued to wander round and we went to play in the gaming room, we played a new game coming out called Pokemon Tekken. I’ve recently kindled a huge love for Pokemon after playing Pokemon Go a lot last summer. I know..I know I’m so far behind on the gaming front, I loved the cartoon as a child but hadn’t ever had a console to play the games on before, and Pokemon go was my first chance to have a go at playing anything Pokemon and I loved it! I’m a huge lover of Tekken too and when I saw a game combining the two I was really excited to try! My over-all impression? I was really unimpressed with some characters due to their speed but once I selected a faster playing character I quite enjoyed the game. I wouldn’t say it was my favourite fighting game but I did really enjoy how colourful it was and if I was able to play it again in the future I’d definitely give it another go to fully get to grips with how to play and all the secret moves, which i think would add a lot more enjoyment to the game playing element.
Later on we caught the end of the Decora transformation that Dreamy Bows set up with Kurebayashii, who is a Super Kawaii Decora girl from Japan. Decora is a harajuku street style featuring bright colours and tons of hair and body accessories. They transformed a model they had into a Super Kawaii Decora girl, using lots of stickers and bright make up, and adorable Decora clothing and accessories. Kurebayashii did a collaboration with Dreamy Bows; the range was absolutely adorable! but i forgot to pick up any of the items up! doh! 🙁
(above the end of the Dreamy bows fashion show)
After this Dreamy Bows presented a fashion show, they showcased lots of different Japanese street styles such as Fairy Kei, Larme Kei, Lolita, Decora and Ganguro. Everyone looked absolutely amazing and I loved seeing how unique everyone’s looks came together. Kurebayashiii also gave a live performance, singing music from her band as well as the theme tune for Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid which is one of my favourite animes! I was so excited when she sang this especially looking as adorbale as she did in all her Decora. Such a wonderful and kawaii surprise <3
After lunch time the second section commenced. Ali and I started the afternoon off with an incredible Dj, dance and visual projection act called Kaien. I think these were one of my favourite acts of the day! Kaien uses EDM (electronic dance music) along with live dancers and a projection screen, which they use to project holograms. The collaboration of all three made for an amazing experience! The dancers used Japanese features to dance with such as fans, nunchucks, and geisha silk robes and the overall effect was simply stunning!
(Above is Reol performing)
As the day went on we went and watched the amazing Reol. I’ve recently only discovered Reol, but They are incredibly popular and famous in Japan. As a huge J-pop group this was their first debut in the UK, and they certainly did not let us down! The room was packed out and they gave an incredible live performance. Reol had so much energy and even though she was dancing she continued to sing live perfectly, whilst they had amazing visuals from videos they have released. Over all an incredible performance.
(official Sanrio Merch collab with Artbox)
During the course of the day we also went and explored the food stalls, but due to having so many allergies I normally take my own food, So I home prepped some sushi of my own, but Ali ate some delicious looking Aubergine “chips”. We also, much later in the day, found all the other stalls that we had been missing. Like I mentioned above, the venue takes some getting used to and it’s really easy to get lost. It was really wonderful to see so many new sellers there this year. I picked up tons of business cards and I’m sure I will buying lots of beautiful things from them and will do reviews on them when I have them! so keep your eyes peeled!
(above is a new stall i discovered called Cry Baby, they’re not currently online, but keep your eyes peeled, her stuff was stunning)
One thing that we were disappointed with; we really wanted to go and do the virtual reality death note experience, however the tickets to it went really quickly, and due to the venue being so confusing we didn’t find it until half way through the second half of the event, and by this time…you’ve guessed it, it had completely all been booked up! so we didn’t get to do this, and this was one of the things top on our list! that being said, we had a really wonderful day all round! and we met so many wonderful people.
I highly recommend Hyper Japan as an event! Lots of people get really dressed up and showcase their Cosplays or general Japanese street styles. Even if dressing up isn’t for you, it’s a great event to go and wander round with tons to do and see!
So until next time, I hope you’ve enjoyed my taste of Hyper Japan. <3
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