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Where to?

Alessi
3-2-5 Kita-Aoyama, Minato-ku. Tel: 03-5770-3500. Open daily Mon-Fri 11am-8pm; Sat, Sun, hols 11am-7:30pm. Nearest stn: Gaienmae, exit 2.

Idee
6-1-16 Minami-Aoyama, Minato-ku. Tel: 03 -3409-6581. Open daily 11am-7pm (Fri until 9pm). Nearest stn: Omotesando, exit A4. www.idee.co.jp

Karf Store
3-10-11 Meguro, Meguro-ku. Tel: 03-5721-3931. Open Thu-Tue 11am-7pm, closed Wed. Nearest stn: Meguro. www.karf.co.jp

Metrocs Tokyo
6-18-2 Shinbashi, Minato-ku. Tel: 03-5777-5866. Open daily 11am-8pm. Nearest stn: Shinbashi or Toei Mita line, Onarimon stn, exit A4. www.metropolitan.co.jp (English and Japanese)


 

 BUYLINE
Shibuya’s Zenmall (29-4 Udagawacho, Shibuya-ku; 03-3770-1641), known for offering large clothing for men, is holding a two-day Early Bird Pre-Summer Sale. The sale will take place on the mornings of April 12 (Sat) and 13 (Sun) for three hours (9am-noon) each day. During these times, nearly everything will be marked 20-80 percent off. Some of the bargains include suits with a spare pair of pants for \9,800 (sizes 3-8L), and summer casual jackets for \8,000 (3-6L). Imported designer suits by makers like Calvin Klein and Boss are also marked down to \39,000 and \59,000, respectively. Those who spend over \10,000 can take part in the Cash Grabbing Contest, where shoppers can dig into a box full of cash. Spend over \30,000 for two chances to grab, and \50,000 for three. Don't miss this rare opportunity, as it could be one of the few chances for those looking to buy large sizes in Japan, especially at affordable prices.
 PAST ISSUES
ADVERTISERS:
Ash 03-3770-3755
Biodanza
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Clinique TCA
Club Boy Beau
Crunch 03-5459-123-
Dr. Allen Leroy Robinson
Hair Dressers Archecal 03-0449-6106
Hayato New York 03-3498-9113
Hugo BOSS
Japan Electrolysis Clinic (Ginza)
Maiko Make Over Studio Shiki
My Boo Nail Salon 03-5428-1121
Neal's Yard Natural Therapy Center
03-3405-7216
Roksen Bar Cosmetic 03-5658-7675
Sin Den
Takagi Skin Clinic
Tamariba.inc.
Tokyo Skin Clinic
Toni&Guy Japan 03-3797-5790
Watanabe Hair Dressing 03-3405-1188
Who Ga 03-5570-1773

IN STORE ARCHIVE:
535: Anything goes
Add a little spunk to your life at Tokyo's zakka housewares shops. Hanna Kite visits five of the best.
531: To a tee
Tokyo’s hottest T-shirt shops boast designs by some of Japan’s top talents. Hanna Kite dresses down.
527: Treasure chests
Hanna Kite checks out five Tokyo jewelers that offer the perfect setting for your next shopping excursion.
523: Arts and crafts movement
Trina O’Hara goes in search of the Japanese creative spirit.
519: Bra-vo
Move over, Hello Kitty. Sexy has finally replaced cute in Tokyo's lingerie stores. Hanna Kite reports.
515: Bowled over
Trina O'Hara tracks down the latest tableware to suit any time of day.
511: East meets nest
Trina O'Hara finds that Tokyo's flea markets and shrine sales suit all types of personalities and interests.
503: The write stuff
Hanna Kite takes notes at Tokyo's finest pen and paper boutiques.
499: Blasts from the past
Tokyo trendsetters have a knack for making old fashions new again. Jennifer Au goes back in time at the city's coolest vintage clothing stores.
495: In the bag
From haute to mass-market, designer to dowdy, Tokyo has a tote to suit every taste and budget. Jennifer Au tracks down the best.
491: Paper chase
Steve Trautlein goes on a search for Tokyo's best English booksellers.
487: Happy trails
A love affair with the great outdoors is easily consummated at these Tokyo retailers. Steve Trautlein gears up.
483: Top hats
Whether it’s a rooftop barbecue, a riverside picnic or an afternoon stroll, there will be times this summer when you’ll want to keep the sun off your face. †Martin Webb hunts down Tokyo’s best headwear suppliers so you can stay shady in style.
479: Oriental express
This summer, all things Asian are hot stuff. Martin Webb finds out how to get the look without breaking the bank.
474: Haute haven
Forget Roppongi Hills’ aspirations to be the city’s cultural hub. This is the consumer capital of the world, and it’s all about shopping. Martin Webb reports.
468: New kit on the block
Backed by street-wise fashion chain store Beams, these seven new stores are upping the style quotient in Daikanyama. Martin Webb sizes up this brand new shopping experience.
463: Can buy me love
Stuck for ideas about how to make Valentine’s Day extra memorable this year? Martin Webb shops around for some great gift ideas for lucky ladies.
452: Perfect timing
For the rushed residents of our fair metropolis, keeping an eye on time is one of life's little necessities.
448: House of style
The newly open Marunouchi Building is drawing legions of eager shoppers from all over Japan
445: Present perfect
Tired of wasting your yen on last-minute gifts at duty free?
441: Toy story
Martin Webb tackles every parent's annual ennui and finds playthings that could earn you more peace and quiet than you bargained for
437: Natural selection
Seven new "select shops" are giving style seekers an excuse to keep spending
433: Window shopping
Stephen Cotterill indulges his yen and peers into the retail oasis that is Glassarea Aoyama
429: Jet, set, go!
With the holiday high season just around the corner, trendy travelers are in hot pursuit of packing accessories
425: Loud and clear
No home is complete without a sound system, and for audiophiles, time at home revolves around those little black boxes
421: Red brick revival
Once at the heart of Yokohama's bustling port industry, Akarenga Soko has a new lease of life as an exclusive entertainment and retail complex
417: Eye browse
An eyewear boom has seen new stores open and old favorites prosper
413: Sporting goodies
Shibuya sportswear
409: Go Figure
An army of action figures
405: Puff 'n' Stuff
Tokyo's best cigar shops
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Bowled over

Trina O'Hara tracks down the latest tableware to suit any time of day.

Would you like something to make your life more of a design experience? A little meal appeal to help you feel artsy, graceful, modish? With fashion giants Burberry and Zara getting into housewares in 2004, design pundits are predicting that consumers will spend less on fashion and a whole lot more on luxury tableware. In fact, gourmet restaurants are spending big chunks of their budget on table settings, chefs are chasing unusual pieces to complement their cuisine, and everyday folk are looking for the new "cool." So if your kitchen cupboard looks like a mishmash of wedding gifts, if your coffee cups are covered in ads, or if your current tableware fails to reflect your stylish living, check out the following Tokyo shops and designers whose inspired creations will help you turn the tables.

 

8am: Breakfast with Illy
Let's face it, drinking out of a white coffee cup is a pretty plain way to start the day. So if a kooky breakfast experience is what you are looking for, head on over to arty design superstore Alessi to pick up Shizuka Yokomizo's Dream cups. Tokyo-born Yokomizo won the Artissima Modern and Contemporary Art Fair's "under 35" Young Talents Award in Italy, and Illy (yes, the coffee company) was so impressed with the quirky images and text that they commissioned her to design a limited-edition coffee cup collection.

Yokomizo's cups feature sketches of six dreams, including Yellow Trousers, which shows the artist trying to put on yellow pants in a library; Pelican, which portrays a bird asking for directions northwards; and Book Window, which depicts a train window through which the artist observes a hill rising in the middle of a field. "I have been making drawings after waking from my dreams since I was 19," Yokomizo says. "These images now appear like snapshots or little absurd and telling cartoons."
The Illy Dream collection is also available in espresso and cappuccino versions in Illy bars, fine food and giftware shops, other stores selling Alessi products, and the e-shop at www.it.illy.com.

 

10.30am: Morning tea with Rorstrand

The Japanese have always had a soft spot for deceptively simple forms with everyday functionality, which is probably why they are crazy about Alfredo HŠberli and his Origo striped porcelain collection for Rorstrand. In fact, HŠberli and partner Christophe Marchand are recognized as one of the best design teams in Switzerland.

To get a handle on this dream team's expressions of freedom and individuality, stop by the airy Karf Store in Meguro. The eggcup (¥2,000), snack bowl (¥3,000), dessert bowl (¥4,000) and mug (¥3,000) make a great addition to morning tea on the patio, and you can choose a dominant color of orange, pink or blue.



1pm: Lunch and afternoon tea with Dinosaur Designs

A smash hit at this year's Tokyo Designers Block showcase, Dinosaur Designs' tableware is available at TDB organizer Idée's funky Aoyama shop. Add zesty color and excitement to the lunch table with the Australian design team's contemporary takes on traditional Asian tablewares, which cleverly follow the worldwide interest in Asian fusion cuisine. For proof, just look at their tile plates, platters or sushi slabs. Dinosaur Designs are dishwasher safe, and the complete range is also available online at www.dinosaurdesigns.com.au.

 

8.30pm: Dinner with Frank Lloyd Wright

To get a hold of your own Modernist masterpiece, stop by Shinbashi's classy and contemporary Metrocs Tokyo and pick up some Frank Lloyd Wright-designed table settings. Wright designed Tokyo's Imperial Hotel in 1922, but he didn't stop at the architecture: he also did the furniture, murals, lights, glasses, plates, cups-even the matchboxes.

Wright was deeply influenced by Japanese aesthetic traditions, and he successfully blended them with Western design to create a beautifully drawn, geometric, art deco pattern. What is so fun about the coffee mug is the big red circle right where a woman's lips would touch. It's designed it to hide lipstick marks.

Most buyers have to scour ebay for the likes of these, but Metrocs offers them in Tokyo, Sapporo or through their online shop. Round dinner plates cost ¥3,800, rhombic cake plates ¥2,500, mugs ¥2,000, and cup and saucer sets ¥2,500.

 

10pm: Coffee and dessert with Ross McBride

Lastly, for something to whet the appetite and add grown-up glamour to your coffee and dessert, how about these prototypes from American-born, Tokyo-based product designer Ross McBride? These playful exercises in anamorphism, which were also on show at this year's Tokyo Designers Block, are sure to stir things up at your next dinner party. They'll be available for sale by spring; keep your eye on www.postnormal.com for more info.

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