Fashionable papa and dogs
9/OCT/2010 on air
Fashionable dads in Daikanyama, Tokyo.
Cool baby sling and buggy. Ikumen (ikuji = parenting + men) is a coined term in Japanese that means fathers who enjoy parenting proactively. (Kirin’s supplementary comment: This may sound unfamiliar, but so far in Japan most fathers have spent more time working outside and it’s been always mothers who basically take care of their kids. That’s why there are many stay-at-home mothers or those who give up their career to end up with doing a 3-5 hours of part-time job that needs no professional knowledge or experience, and work-into-the-night fathers in Japan. Fathers cannot have a chance to play with their kids during weekdays.)
FQ Japan is a fashion magazine targeted for Ikumen. It’s only less than 2% of working men that decide to take paternal leave in Japan. However, little by little, fathers who enjoy parenting proactively are growing. In fact, it’s not only kids but dogs are also loved as much as kids in Japan today. Dogs are dressed with Yukata or functional clothing that should protect them from strong sunshine, or even handmade clothes by their owners. Japanese dogs are very fashionable!
What are these men in love with?
Takahashi-san regards himself as Ikumen. Since he had his first-born son, he realized there was no buggy he wanted to use for his son. Then he made a buggy from a stepladder by himself. Furthermore he spent 3 years to upgrade it as a buggy for men to carry. He sold 150 buggies in half a year. Basically his hobby was bicycle. He quit the construction company he was working for to start up his own business. He wanted to make a cool buggy that men can use without embarrassment.
La Fuente Daikanyama is one of the spots where Ikumen like to come. It’s where Ikumen can find some nice goods for nursing kids.
Fujino-san is Inumen, instead of Ikumen. What’s that? Inu means dog in Japanese. He loves to dress his dog, “Natsume-chan” beautifully. Natsume-chan has appeared on a dog magazine “Pug Fan” with Tina Turner, Rococo, and several ways of coordination. He works from a small 4.5Jo (about 7 square meters) room in his house, where he makes sweet dresses for his dog . He’s using the same pattern paper for over 10 years and spends a whole day to make the sweet lolita dress for Natsume-chan. He uses the sewing machine only for her.
What’s going on with dog business in Japan?
Crystal Ball nowadays put more emphasis on dog items. Down vest is for 12,600yen. Carry bag is for 16,800yen. T-shirt is for 5,145yen.
In Japan, esthetic salons exclusive for dog are also available. Mud pack is for 3,680yen. Herbal bath is 1,050yen. Dog nail painting is for 2,500yen.ãThere are a lot more exclusive services and goods for dogs such as dog cake.
There is a company that even changed their major products from sportswear to dog wear. Their oriental zodiac costumes have become so popular thanks to mouth communication, which accelerated their development of more functional lines. “There are kawaii dog clothes everywhere. Our products are not only kawaii but also functional!” They have developed the outfits that do not let mosquito approach the dogs by using special cloth. One of their staff repeated experiment by exposing his skin to mosquito!
Blythe is a customized doll originated from the U.S about 40 years ago but are now very popular in Japan. What makes these dolls very special is that we can customize them with clothing, accessories, makeup, eye colors and etc. as we like!ããRobin-san is a Dollmen who loves dolls just so much. His hobby is shooting Blythe doll’s photos in some pretty ways. He is not interested in human, because dolls never complain.
As a dog owner I understand it’s fun to dress dogs with cute outfits but I don’t know if the dogs really enjoy what they are wearing. If I ever have a chance to learn how to use sewing machine, the first thing I want to make is a dog outfit for Pi-chan. While at the same time I know she doesn’t like to dress anything basically. I get her dressed only during winter when the temperature inside and outside house is very different. But I like idog‘s outfits. They are cute, functional, durable and reasonable! I knew them from internet, I didn’t know they were already so popular. I have 2 shirts from idog, which I bought at 1000yen for sale. 3 other outfits were from Pet Paradise, and 1 from my friend. Crystal Ball is cute, but just way too expensive for dog clothing or goods. I could buy my clothes with that amount of money!! Esthetic treatment, mud pack and nail painting for dog? That’s crazy!! I think that’s too extreme. But such business would not exist in Japan if there were less customers. (*_*)
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