Now here’s a look you don’t see everyday…probably because we don’t live in Tokyo.
These fascinating young ladies are followers of a fashion called Yamanba, a derivative of Ganguru fashion which rose to popularity in the 1990’s, mostly among teenage girls and women in their early 20’s, generally confined to Tokyo’s trendy shopping districts.
Ganguro fashion is characterized by tanned skin combined with hair dyed in shades of orange to blonde, or a silver gray known as high bleached. Black ink is used as eyeliner and white concealer is used as lipstick and eye shadow. Features are often further embellished by false eyelashes, plastic facial gems, and pearl powder.
Platform shoes and brightly-colored outfits complete the look. Other accessories typical of Ganguro fashion include miniskirts, stickers on the face, and lots of bracelets, rings, and necklaces.
Yamanba also feature dark tans, with white lipstick, pastel eye makeup, tiny metallic or glittery adhesives below the eyes, brightly-colored contact lenses, plastic dayglo-colored clothing, 4-6 inch platform boots, micro-mini skirts and mismatched accessories. Some wear stuffed animals as decorations!
If the two styles seem very similar, near as I can tell, it’s because they are. Yamanba seems to be a term used to describe orthodox followers of the Ganguro fashion.
I don’t know…this style kind of reminds me of my wild 80’s days when I used to have really bleached hair (with a duck tail) and I wore a neon pink trench coat with lots of bright jelly bracelets (and my boyfriend used to wear a pair of red plastic shoes that my family always made fun of).
My parents thought my 80’s fashion phase was a bit over-the-top. No doubt the traditional Japanese folks think Yamanba is “out there” as well (those familiar with Tokyo’s fashion trends say that the Yamanba phase is on its way out).
But crazy fashions always make for great costume ideas. I read several blog post comments that indicated teen girls are very interested in the Yamanba fashion as party costumes.
So give credit where credit is due. While Tokyo’s Yamanba look may not be the best idea for the fashion world…it definitely makes for eye-catching costumes!
This weekend I got the opportunity to go to the Scottish Festival at Thanksgiving Point in Utah. It was awesome! I got to see some rocking celtic bands, participate in celtic rituals like waulking, eat haggis for the first time (seriously, yum), and of course I was dazzled by the eye candy! Tartan was draped everywhere, there were hundreds upon hundreds of kilts, not to mention a variety of period costumes and other fun things to wear!
This family sang an a capella rendition of the national anthem for the opening of the Highland Games.
This is the band Wicked Tinkers, they were very popular!
Some pretty outfits:
I even showed up in the most Scottish-looking outfit I could muster.
But this guy was definitely the best dressed of everyone at the whole event!
Well, either you love them, or you’ve never heard of them.
The self-proclaimed “fourth best band” from New Zealand, Flight of the Conchords are a musical comedy duo composed of Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement. Their music is simply awesome, and they are extremely funny as well. So good, in fact, that last year HBO gave them their own show.
Their show is fantastic! A mixture of clever comedy and fabulous music, and some great costumes as well.
Their first 12-episode season was a smashing success, and is now available on DVD. The Conchords will be back in January, 2009 for season two. I can’t wait!
In the meantime, I highly suggest you pick up their self-titled Music CD which was released last April. I love listening to all the songs from their show. They do a great job paying tribute to many styles of music and artists with refreshing creativity.
Their parody of David Bowie is literally out of this world, entitled “Bowie’s in Space.”
Frodo is great…who is THAT?
There’s a running joke about the Lord of the Rings throughout the Conchords TV episodes. Bret McKenzie actually had a small part as an elf in Lord of the Rings, and he became famous even before Flight of the Conchords became popular.
Apparently, Bret looked quite striking as an elf, and fans gave him the name, FIGWIT (Frodo is great…who is THAT?).
Bret McKenzie’s big scene in Lord of the Rings as FIGWIT the Elf
In their TV show, they make jokes about New Zealand, and how it struggles in the tourist industry. They frequently show Australians getting the upper hand, and have some hilarious marketing ads for New Zealand.
Their band manager, Murray, often says lamely, “New Zealand. Like… Lord of the Rings.”
Here’s their Lord of the Rings parody song. To the delight of fans everywhere, Bret dons the Elf costume that made FIGWIT so famous.
I’ll leave you with a few more Youtube clips of their songs. And once again, I encourage you all to listen to the Flight of the Conchords CD and be sure to check out their HBO show on DVD.
Some great costumes in their song, “Mermaids.”
The “Prince of Parties” – scene where Bret and Jemaine accidentally take LSD
TV show intro and “Foux da fa fa” – a tribute to France
Here’s a fun promotional video released by Marvel Studios to get fans excited for their numerous superhero movies.
Iron Man was a sensational hit, and the Incredible Hulk opens this coming weekend. Marvel is paving the way for an Avengers movie, which will include all of their heroes teaming up together. I can barely wait, I’m so excited.
This video shows Spider-Man, Iron Man and the Hulk teaming up to fight some giant robots. Heh, Spider-Man seems to take a backseat to the other heroes, probably because he doesn’t have a movie coming out this summer.
Still, it’s great to see the wise-cracking webslinger in action along with Hulk and Iron Man.
What would you do if you saw Elvis…no, make that Elvi, flying down the slopes of your favorite ski resort?
Each spring, Ski resorts host some clever costume events to amuse and delight skiers and spectators, alike.
At Mount Rose Ski Resort in Tahoe, the King’s birthday turns the slopes into cascading Elvi gliding down the mountain. Don’t be surprised if Elvis punches your lift ticket or teaches your ski lesson!
On Bud Light Ladies Day, men in cheap tacky dresses, wigs and accessories, compete for money and prizes in the hilarious “drag race” and other equally hairy competitions.
But Mount Rose doesn’t stop there. Costumes head downhill again in the Dummy race. Dummies of every shape and size careen down the mountain, strapped to skis, launching themselves off huge jumps and ending up as a pile of mush at the bottom of the slope. But for the participating teams and crowds…it’s all worth it.
Next time you’re thinking of tossing that old costume, consider the fun & thrills you might have sending it downhill instead!
Every once in a while, we find a very strange costume news story.
Meet Ally Ashwell, a 30-year old UK woman who recently gave birth while wearing a bumblebee costume! She didn’t know she was pregnant, and attended a bachelorette party (known as Hen Night) to celebrate her friend’s upcoming wedding.
She safely delivered a baby boy, born 14 weeks premature. Fortunately, the baby received proper medical attention and is doing well.
Wow! Glad to know the baby is fine. A spokesman for the Blackpool Victoria Hospital said: “It is very unusual for a baby to be born in this situation.”
Having been deemed as the writer with the most costuming experience, I am here to share with you–
A Short History of My Own Costuming Experience.
Part One: High School
It was in high school that I started making costumes for reasons that didn’t involve Halloween or theater productions. In fact, it was at this time that I started making costumes at all—previously, all my costumes had been purchased or made by my mother.