Originally posted on Paper Mothball Vintage

It is easy to understand how the natural world is so intricately woven into the fabrics of Japanese culture, a dominating theme from religion to art, culinary traditions and architecture. It has even persisted in modern manifestations through fashion and entertainment. In contrast, I originally come from Colorado where you are more likely to catalog the many types of dry grass than you are to encounter gigantic vines and flowering forests. While Boulder and Tokyo are similar in that they both enjoy four seasons, it is astonishing how much vegetation thrives even in busy urban environments. The diversity of flora in Japan never ceases to amaze me. With cities as large as Tokyo and Yokohama, there is of course infrastructure and man made construction, however, it always seems to be done in a beautiful way, working with nature. That is what I loved about this location. The lattice like cut of the concrete provided a canvas for moss, minerals and algae to paint upon, and a made a dramatic drop for these long vines.

I take all my own photos (Photography: Laura Okita)

The lattice wall and this lattice patterned dress seemed quite at home together. Made of a velvet and linen, this dress was one of those that, aside from the almost offensive initial shock of color, did not look very appealing on the hanger, but once it was worn, gave a very Prada -esque look. It seemed to take on a very Japanese mythological feeling of coming to life through the wearer.

While shopping I go through phases where I gravitate toward certain colors or textures. I have been obsessed recently with velvet fabrics and berry colors. This is likely stemming from the fact that velvet is very difficult to sew and musters a great appreciation from my weary sewing fingers when I encounter it hidden upon endless sagging thrift store racks filled with corduroy and polyester.

As for the berry colors, maybe its from the persisting lip color trend ruling the runways for the past few seasons, or maybe its from my Marc by Marc Jacobs handbag that I received while in Japan at Christmas. Either way, I just cant get enough of it.

I have to confess to one of the most difficult posts to date as far as climate goes. I was doing my hair and makeup for this post in August. If you have ever been there in the summer, you would have also experienced the incredible heat and humidity. That is probably what keeps the plants going, but its what makes me want to jump in a snowbank. Christmas in July, yes please! The poor attempts at doing my hair in the dripping humidity was a creative struggle. Somehow I made it through with a little help from breaks of eating chocolates and ice cream roll cakes. My makeup inspiration was a 90s editorial look. I was glad I had my Marc by Marc Jacobs cosmetics to stand up to the humidity and give me these bold berry colors. See my review from the archives here.

Paper Mothball Vintage

Laura Okita is a vintage fashion designer, photographer and vintage editorial blogger living in Brooklyn, NY, and model for over 10 years in New York, Europe and Japan. "I am mostly self taught using vintage sewing patterns. I create all my garment patterns and sew all my designs. I specialize in luxury fabrics and hand beading and embroidery, and occasionally create my own prints for fabrics. I take most of my own pictures and videos, working in both film and digital. As a model, I always try to bring the clothing to life. Every garment has its own story that it wants to tell. When I step into a dress, I step into being that girl."

No Comments Yet

Comments are closed

Our Sister Companies