So as most of you know, we’re here in Hong Kong to design and build our apparel. Specifically, this past week, we finalized our entire Spring and Summer 2011 ranges. Pretty insane that we work so far ahead, right? I think so too. We also put the finishing touches on our upcoming Fall and Winter lines that are releasing at the end of this year, and here’s a sneak peek at some of the pre-production samples. Making changes here and there, tweaking denim washes, embroidery tension, thread counts, hardware finishes, popping off rivets and adding them elsewhere.. it’s a tough job, but somebody’s gotta do it.
So truly, one of the greatest things about The Hundreds is we have family worldwide. And nowhere is that more evident than Hong Kong. I love coming back here just to see our HK brothers, who took us out to Peking Garden tonight for some quality Chinese food. (Mike T, I hear this is your favorite spot!).
Speaking of Sam, he also raps for LMF (Lazy Mutha Fucka), which is like the Wu of Hong Kong. They formed a decade back and caused all kinds of controversy for their language, raps on politics, and were even banned for it at a point. Their music is a seamless blend of rap and metal, and there are 12 official members including MC Yan and Prodip. LMF’s image was further cemented in the early 2000s by being memorialized in personalized Michael Lau figures. Anyways, the reason why I’m telling you all this is that LMF broke up years back, but just had their first official reunion show earlier this month, with over 5,000 in attendance. Here’s some footage from it (not mine):
I love this letterman jacket. I’d love to get one, except for the fact that it just sold out in less than 10 hours. And that’s a $400 piece, mind you. Next time.
This is the new Comme des Garcons on Ice House Street in Hong Kong, right in the heart of Central. Not sure what happened, but the original block that housed this and a few other stores is boarded up now, so some of them moved over here and set up new residence. In my opinion, this a much better retail experience on a flat layout instead of vertical stories.
This watermelon room is courtesy of celebrated Chinese artist Ai Wei Wei. China is home to the best artists in the world right now, I’m prepared to defend that. Great creativity comes from struggle, and now that the ties of communism are gradually loosening, these artists are unleashing lifetimes of pent-up expression onto the rest of us.
And the wallpaper enveloping the Comme store is by Kerim Ragamov.
A couple doors down is the new Hoods, the WTaps store, which opened last month. Definitely one of my choice selections for HK shopping, as far as product offerings go.
And the new Maison Martin Margiela store in Hong Kong. In concordance with the usual Margiela buildouts.
So we’re out in Hong Kong now. First place we gotta eat at is the gully mantis shrimp spot, a blue-collar local restaurant that tourists don’t come within miles of. You remember when we were here 2 years back?
At the outset of Harajuku, gangs of Japanese greasers gather in Yoyogi Park on Sunday afternoons to wrap their boots in electrical tape, pop in the oldies, and dance. It’s a pretty awesome sight and well documented in Peter Bjorn and John‘s “Nothing to Worry About” music video last year. These are the same dudes in the film, they’ve been keeping their passion for 1950s rockabilly afloat since the ’70s. The subculture eventually died out decades back, but the original crew is still pushin’ through, even though some are as old as your dad. They keep true to the culture also,.. they don’t necessarily appreciate the gawking tourists and aren’t doing this as a run-of-the-mill street performance. Basically, don’t mess with ‘em. If you watch my Youtube clip, I even caught a little scuffle on tape between rival crews. So cool.
We were walking through the hustle and bustle of downtown Shibuya, when this lumberjack from Hell lurked us out, ran up and started fumbling through words. His name is Josh Sehrer and he was genuinely starstruck to see us in the middle of Japan. And by us, I mean BEN. No lie, … FREAKING OUT. There were a few reasons why this situation was outright hilarious. One, Josh’s getup. I told him he looked like he was attacked by a picnic blanket. He proudly claimed that every red buffalo plaid piece he’s wearing was property of a different brand.
Secondly, he’s supposedly from Oregon and returns to Japan every half-year to hang out in front of this random department store building, have sex with multiple Japanese women, and raise all kinds of hell. Turns out Josh Sehrer has quite an internet presence, his website is end-to-end with all kinds of outrageous behavior. Just flip through his stupendous journal entries and drunk videos. Scour his online shop for special edition tees that are numbered to 10,000, with 1 million dollars in profits going to his penthouse fund. Or pick up the first condom he ever used on a Japanese girl for a measly $50,000. Yes, you can also do yourself a favor and add Josh to Twitter.
The best part about all this was that he didn’t know who I was, so I convinced Josh that I was Ben’s lowly assistant. Needless to say, Josh Sehrer is God’s gift to humankind. He’s here to save us all. Watch the video, if you don’t watch it 3 times in a row, I’ll give you your money back.
Here are 2 of the most impressive shops in Japan, as far as design and buildout go.
The new Opening Ceremony store in Shibuya is far from a boutique and more their own department store. 7 floors of personalized collections, including Nom de Guerre, Warriors of Radness, Pendleton, and their own collaboration with Chloe Sevigny.
Every time I’m out here, I show you photos of the glass Prada castle in Aoyama. But this time, I’ll take you through it to the best of my abilities: