We were hanging out at the brand new Urban Outfitters Camden store yesterday and saw lots of exciting things, goes without saying really, but this book about Japan’s culture of KAWAII was particularly cute (which is kind of obvious considering ‘kawaii’ means ‘cute’).
We had a little flick through and discovered that some trace ‘kawaii’ as far back as Japan’s Taisho era, but it became more of a mass phenomenon in the 1970s when schoolgirls began writing in big, bubbly letters complete with tiny hearts and stars.
Then there was manga, Hello Kitty, and Harajuku, etc. etc. The book contains loads of interviews with illustrators, artists, fashion designers, and scholars, plus hundreds of colourful photos that capture traces of kawaii on the streets, inside homes, on lunchboxes and airplanes, in haute couture and street fashion, in cafés, museums, and hotels.
available at urbanoutfitters.co.uk