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TOKYOJIN offers an insight into the life of the modern Tokyo man through an edit of Japanese apparel, accessories and homeware.
Tokyojin, a curation by BEAMS for Harvey Nichols, is about the Tokyo man and his passion for authenticity. He is curious about the world, and he is an advocate of Japanese heritage. His creations are mindful of true craft, and his hybrid lifestyle is quintessentially modern. Tokyojin is a current and real-life perspective on Japan.
It's the city on everyone's lips; from the go-to destination for avid travellers and the industry leading technology, to the cuisine and rich traditions and culture, Japan offers a wealth of experiences, and now you can enjoy them in the heart of London.
A first for the famed Japanese store, BEAMS curated an exclusive edit of artisan products, including the much sought-after Kokeshi dolls, as well as new and niche Japanese ready-to-wear brands, including BEAMS, Loopwheeler, Porter and Teatora with exclusive pieces from Arc’teryx, Buzz Ricksons, Sun Surf and an exciting collaboration with Champion X Harvey Nichols X BEAMS.
Bringing the best of modern Japanese lifestyle to London, TOKYOJIN saw a series of workshops and activities allowing customers to immerse themselves in a truly authentic experience with activities including limited edition T-shirt printing, Sushi making, whisky masterclasses and gifts with purchase.
IN CONVERSATION WITH: YO SHITARA
For those new to the world of BEAMS, how would you describe it?
BEAMS is a lifestyle retailer and a community of cultural arbiters. We like to think of ourselves as a network creative minds, and a source of happiness and excitement for everyone. When we started out in 1976, our tagline was the “American Life Shop”, and we set up a tiny store that was laid out to look like a UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles) college dorm room. We’ve since expanded our stores to explore various other concepts, but our basic idea remains the same: we look to different lifestyles to find aspects that will in turn enhance our own. We have always asked our favorite brands to alter a basic product slightly to better fit Japanese style and sensibility.
What makes BEAMS and Harvey Nichols the perfect pairing? Why did you choose us to create a pop-up store with?
Harvey Nichols is a luxury retailer with a witty and vivacious character. I just had a good feeling about this as we at BEAMS also strive to surpass expectations and to surprise our customers with a sense of humour. We are truly honored that Harvey Nichols has welcomed us to create our universe inside their prestigious Knightsbridge store. This TOKYOJIN pop-up is our first physical retail location in the UK, and we are so excited to share this experience with the discerning audience at Harvey Nichols.
Why do you think there is such a fascination with Japanese culture at the moment in the West and other parts of the world?
People often ask me what determines good taste. Personally, I think good taste depends on a person’s ability to understand how someone feels. In other words, good taste is objective; objective to the extent of anticipating what your party may be feeling when in your presence. I am especially mindful of this in the way I dress. The Japanese have earned a reputation as a thoughtful and caring nation, which are such traits that have empowered our hospitality industry. Japanese craftsmanship excels in the same qualities: extensively thought out designs and careful attention to detail. Debating is not inherent to our culture, but instead we are trained to understand the unspoken.
Tell us about BEAMS’ various labels.
At the beginning, we were just a group of guys that loved the American West Coast lifestyle, but soon after we fell in love with American East Coast styles, then British tailored styles, then menswear-inspired womenswear, and the list goes on, along with our list of labels that embrace each style. With BEAMS PLUS;BEAMS T; BEAMS RECORDS; fennica; TOKYO CULTUART by BEAMS; BEAMS JAPAN, and all of the other labels, it now adds up to approximately 30 labels. Our strengths lies in the fact these are not just business categories, but are indeed personal passions held by the buyers and directors who launched the labels themselves. Practice makes perfect, but perfect is never as strong as passion.