Saturday, 30 April 2016

My Japan Trip 2015/2016 Day 4: Omotesando, Shibuya 109 Sales and Shinjuku Closet Child

My Japan Trip Day #4

Day 4 of my holiday in Japan was January 2nd, the day Shibuya 109 opens to sell their fukubukuro and general New Year sales, so obviously I was going to Shibuya 109 haha! Some people queue up ridiculously early and get issued tickets in order to buy fukubukuro that will sell out within minutes. This activity dwindles every year though, as more brands move online, where you can even reserve fukubukuro and have them sent out to you. Why would you queue up in the cold when you can order fukubukuro online?! Some brands even do online-only fukubukuro, with special items you wouldn't get in store. Because I didn't have my heart set on any fukubukuro since I'm too picky, I decided to go to 109 when I was ready and have a browse, which turned out to be around 11am-12pm.

I also took the time to take photos of Omotesando as I walked down it. It's interesting how it has such an elegant, refined air and then as soon as you cross Meiji Dori, BAM! You're in Harajuku with Condomania staring you in the face.

Condomania Harajuku
A legit novelty condom store in Harajuku. No joke. (Source)

Ralph Lauren Omotesando Harajuku Shibuya
Ralph Lauren Omotesando

I had a browse around Omotesando Hills but none of it was to my tastes so I quickly snapped some pics and left.

Omotesando Hills
Omotosando Hills, a shopping complex in Omotesando.

Max Brenner Chocolate Bar Omotesando
This is the Max Brenner Chocolate Bar that is highly recommended. I would definitely like to visit there next time!

Omotesando Hills

Omotesando New Year
An amazingly cute shop display in Omotesando.

Ted Baker Omotesando
An animatronic dog in front of Ted Baker Omotesando. It bowed its head up and down as if it was eating from its bowl.

Omotesando Shrine
Inbetween all the fancy brand stores is a quiet little shrine. I found it very beautiful and watched a family go and pay their respects.

I walked to Shibuya and went down Centre Gai first. I happened across an arcade and seeing as it was my first time seeing one, I went in.

Shibuya arcade UFO catcher
Lots of cute anime figures as prizes in the UFO catchers. Seeing as I'm not up to date on anime, nor is it a big hobby of mine, I wasn't interested in trying to win the prizes haha.

Shibuya arcade
Now this is an arcade game I can get behind! CHOCOLATE! I spent 1000¥ and in the end I won two tiny, tiny squares of chocolate...oh well, it's an experience I guess? Don't play to win, play to have fun! ...I still haven't eaten that chocolate.

Shibuya arcade Taiko no Tatsujin
My first time seeing a Taiko no Tatsujin arcade game! I recognised it because I saw Konata play it on Lucky Star. I had a go but for the first two songs, I had no idea how to cycle through songs so I ended up playing the first song, which I had no idea what it was or who it was performed by, twice! Afterwards I got the hang of it and played along to Kyary Pamyu Pamyu's 'Fashion Monster' and 'Ninjari Bang Bang'! Weeb goal accomplished!

After the arcade I went in search of a second hand clothing store a friend had recommended called Bingo. It was in the basement of 'Yahoo Off'. I have heard of 'Book Off', 'Mode Off' and the such but never Yahoo Off! They seemed to sell books and musical instruments from what I recall.

Yahoo Off Bingo Resale Shibuya
Unfortunately Bingo was not a success for me. I don't know what I was expecting, especially with the fashions I'm into, maybe some older Gyaru brands or clothing? There were a few things from brands like Snidel and Emoda but they were very bland and didn't look much different to 'normie' clothes.

Shibua Tokyu Plaza
Once you come out of Centre Gai, you face Shibuya Tokyu Plaza.

Shibuya Don Quijote
To the left is Don Quijote. This was my first time seeing a Don Quijote so I went in for a browse!

Don Quijote Cosmetics New Year Fukubukuro
Donki beauty fukubukuro on sale.

Don Quijote Cosmetics New Year Fukubukuro
Donki fukubukuro on sale, including Dolly Wink.

Don Quijote New Year Decorations
New Year's decorations.

I heard Donki was amazing for cosmetics and they do sell a lot, but I was a little overwhelmed so I didn't buy anything. I like to carefully decide what to buy, rather than impulsively buy and since I'd already bought my Hada Labo set, I was pretty satisfied.

Don Quijote Japanese Cosmetics

Don Quijote Japanese Cosmetics
So many face masks! A staff member was restocked them too. I got the pink Lululun masks (centre in the photo) in my fukubukuro from Matsumoto Kiyoshi Harajuku.

Don Quijote Nail Polish
Nail supplies

Don Quijote Japanese Skincare
Cosmetics including refill packs for many popular skincare lines including Hada Labo.

Don Quijote Japanese Haircare
I had Shiseido's Tsubaki (the red bottles in the photo) and Ichikami (black and pink refill packs on the second from bottom row) shampoo and conditioner on my shopping list, but after feeling the weight of them, I was unsure since they were pretty heavy. I also wanted the bottle version of Ichikami, not the refill packs and I only ever saw them in one store! Next time I go to Japan I want to stay longer, so maybe I can buy them then and use them during my trip, then bring them home since I might not buy as much stuff next time I go! I could also ask a friend living in Japan to buy them and post them back to me, since I checked online and the markup on these items are insane!

Don Quijote Japanese Air Fresheners
Pretty air freshener bottles with cute little crowns on them!

After going to Donki, I went to Shibuya 109. Even though the initial queue at opening time had dispersed, Shibuya 109 on New Year is INSANE. Seriously, what would probably take me 1/1.5 hours to go around 109 took me about 3 or 4. There were so many people, the elevators were always full and there were even police officers on every level to direct crowds and traffic calm! Many shop staff were holding up fukubukuro and shouting out the prices and other deals. I can only imagine those poor shop staff's voices must be so fact, two shop girls were taking turns to shout out deals and were giggling when their voices cut out half way through. There were still many stores selling fukubukuro by the time I arrived at 109. Some stores I can explicitly remember having fukubukuro left were Glavil, Ghost of Harlem, D.I.A. and RoseMarie Seoir (formerly Syrup).

Again, I couldn't take photos in Shibuya 109, and you wouldn't have been able to see much anyway due to the sheer amount of people but I did snap a quick video (albeit pointed at my feet) to capture the sounds of New Year sales. All those voices that you can hear shouting are the shop staff, promoting their fukubukuro, other sales and any time sales happening (more on that later).

I bought a couple of items in the New Year sales.

Glavil vest top
Glavil vest top, very similar to the Ghost of Harlem one.
Glavil cross necklace
Glavil's iconic cross necklaces were half price so I bought the silver one and received it in a cute reusable pouch. I put make-up in it when I'm travelling now!

Secret Honey by Honey Bunch Waistcoat and Skirt Set
I bought this cute set from a store called Secret Honey by Honey Bunch, which I had never known about until I came into Shibuya 109. Most of their items are very pastely, a bit like Honey Cinnamon, Swankiss, Rosemarie Seoir, etc. but this set stuck out to me. I really love the waistcoat and thought 'meh' about the skirt and wondered if I'd sell it when I got home but when I got home and wore the two together, it looks so cute! Whilst I was trying this on, I heard the shop staff shout about a time sale happening right there and there. A time sale, or flash sale might be more commonly used in the UK, is an extra discount for a limited time. In 109 or Laforet, it could only last 30 minutes or an hour. At Secret Honey's time sale I got an extra 10% off this set. In total I think this set cost me around £20.

After Shibuya 109 I decided to go to Shinjuku to visit Closet Child.

Shinjuku Studio Alta
Shinjuku Studio Alta

Shinjuku Lumine Est
Shinjuku Lumine Est, connected to JR Shinjuku Station

Shinjuku at night
Shinjuku at night

Godzilla in Shinjuku
Godzilla overlooking neon skyscrapers!

It took me a while to find Shinjuku Closet Child since the marker for myself kept jumping around on Google Maps...I think I circled the station about three times haha... I almost gave up but thankfully I didn't because I had an amazing haul at Closet Child Shinjuku.

Closet Child Shinjuku
Closet Child Shinjuku (source)

Embarrassingly, this was the first Closet Child I visited where I realised they had another floor for Gothic and Punk clothing and one for Otome style...I just visited the Lolita floor of Harajuku's Closet Child before that haha! I'm so glad I found out sooner rather than later because like I mentioned above, there were lots of great things on the Gothic floor of Closet Child. Naturally the next time I visited Harajuku Closet Child, I had a good look around the Gothic floor! The Otome floors didn't really appeal to me so I never really bothered with them.

The first thing I laid my eyes on in Closet Child Shinjuku was the dress I had been wishing to see in Japan ever since I started planning my trip...Alice and the Pirate's Merry Making in the Ghost Town! I was literally internally screaming when I saw it, and had to check the label to make sure it was actually Merry Making and not just wishful thinking. It's safe to say I grabbed it off the rail and hung onto it for dear life whilst browsing the rest of Closet Child. It was on the 'Rare' rail but was a really reasonable price, around or just under retail price. It was really popular in the UK and US when it was released, so people sold it on for a lot afterwards. It's interesting to compare what is popular in the Japanese and Western Lolita community. Many consider Merry Making a Halloween print, as well as Metamorphose's Dark Night Guardian (which I found at a later date too) so maybe Japanese Lolitas were uninterested after that holiday had passed? I'm not going to think about it too much, just count my blessings haha! It was even in my favourite colourway, black and purple!

Alice and the Pirates Merry Making in the Ghost Town
My beauty...I tried it on as well, just in case, since I would've been heartbroken if I bought it and it didn't fit or suit me...

They also had the very first dress I fell in love with in Shinjuku Closet Child. It was Innocent World's Chandelier OP in grey and I spotted it in Vol. 1 of the English Gothic and Lolita Bible. It was so pretty and elegant to me, but when I tried it on, I just felt it didn't suit me. I put it back but was so grateful for the opportunity to try it and realise it wasn't for me.

Next I went up to the Gothic floor, and other than my blessed Merry Making find, I was like 'Yes, yes...this is my floor' haha~

When I first went into the Harajuku Closet Child, I was obviously in awe but I also thought '...Where are the Gothic Lolita brands? Atelier Pierrot? Moi Meme Moitie?' When I found the Gothic floor, I realised they were stored here instead.

H.Frill JSK
Gorgeous H.Frill JSK

After a very pleasing haul at Closet Child, I headed back to my home, Harajuku.

I was very pleased with my shopping this day, and just so so happy I got Merry Making in the Ghost Town. I remember thinking before I went to Japan 'Ah, if I walked into Closet Child, and there was Merry Making in the Ghost Town and Dark Night Guardian, I would die happy, and if there were nothing else in Japan I wanted to buy, I would still be satisfied.' so it really was a dream come true to get both pieces!

Stay tuned for Day 5, where I visit Aoyama, Akihabara, Ueno and Asakusa, visiting Sensou-ji (Tokyo's oldest temple) for hatsumode, the first shrine or temple visit of the new year!


  1. Awww I miss sweetcorn soup! I haven't even seen it in the Asian supermarkets here in Germany... I'd really love to go to Japan for the New Year (sales haha), the cosmetic fukubukuro look amazing. Was there still a decent selection of packs with clothe sin the store, or it's really better to get them online nowadays?

  2. It was the first time I've ever tried sweetcorn soup haha! It was a little jarring at first, but not bad! Oh poop, I forgot to put whether lucky packs were still available after opening haha, thank you for reminding me! Yes, many stores had lucky packs left when I went shopping! Some shops I can explicitly remember still having lucky packs were Glavil, Ghost of Harlem, D.I.A. and Rosemarie Seoir (formerly Syrup)! Same for LaForet, BTSSB, Ghost of Harlem, Swimmer, Innocent World and Axes Femme still had lucky packs left when I went a few hours after opening.

  3. This was super fun to read! <3 Your homestay makes such tasty looking food as well :)
    Also, you can get scented looroll in the UK, haha. It's by a brand named Nicky, and is more of a kind of perfume/babypowder scent :p

    1. The food was really tasty! That's awesome that Nicky makes scented toilet paper, wish they had other scents too haha!

  4. Great blog Laura :D I can't believe you resist the donki fuku deals I would have had a basket full you have much more self control :D

    1. Thanks Risa! I know, the Anna Sui one was so tempting, and the one with Dolly Wink too, but I had enough cosmetics! Maybe not next time I go though haha!