Apr 8, 2012

S.t.a.r.- You're Big In Japan

My favorite new pose- EVERYONE poses like this here

Konnichiwa Everyone!! We arrived safe and sound in Japan last week on Wednesday. Since we arrived it has been Go, Go, Go!!! This post is going to be pretty long- I have committed myself to a few good hours of picture loading -I am sorry this is going to be the LONGEST post ever, but I've missed you all, and I want to share all of our pictures/experiences with you guys(although this will be a small sampling, considering the truck load of photos I have taken so far.) So buckle up people!!

In the ancient bamboo gardens- one of the most spiritual places to be, so quiet and serene, and clean- they had stadd in there sweeping the ground!

Blayre and I began our journey by taking the train into Kamakura(the transportation here is incredible- so convenient). Apparently Kamakura is an old training ground of Samurai, and is currently an upscale surf town that caters to wealthy tourists and surfers. People also come far and wide to visit the many shrines and to see the Daibutsu- a large Buddha statue nestled in the mountain side. Also it is the "sakura" season, which mean "cherry blossom" season and so while all of the flowers in bloom it is a beautiful sight! Kamakura kind of reminds me of Hawaii, lots of surf shops and burger joints(so not what I was anticipating to see) and this is actually something I have noticed in Tokyo too- lots of Hawaiian inspiration! From Thursday- Saturday we had our plates full with wedding stuff( we came here to film a wedding!) The couple Duc & Hiroko live in L.A. but because of the brides family background on her paternal side decided to have a traditional Japanese ceremony, it was such an incredible experience- I will post the video when it is finished. Check out Elle & Be films for other wedding vids.

OMG- Real Bamboo in the wild, I was just Blown away!!

At the Bamboo Gardens

Twins thanks to Joe Fresh!

We love the vending machines here- amazing coffee drinks- some are even served hot!!

I took about 100 photos inside of 7/11- The staff was laughing at me- there are so many cool things to take pictures of I couldn't stop myself!

In 7/11- Great food options including Gyozas...

Daibutsu in kamakura- Look how small I am!!

Blayre taking part in the cleansing ritual upon entering the spiritual grounds of the Daibutsu

A beautiful shrine we found not far from the Daibutsu, that was the most beautiful zen & scenic place I have ever been to, just gorgeous. With views of the ocean, it was literally paradise. I feel so inspired by the Japanese culture at the moment.

The driver was in such good shape

Yes, this is what the rickshaw driver wears to run.... He ran 2 miles in these...

Blayre filming

Cherry Blossom lined path through Kamakura

The wedding- there were so many tourists snapping this I felt like we were with Britney Spears

Sake wall

Harajuku was insane- everything there is so over the top, loud, colorful and cartoon like- doesn't feel like reality. If I had some of my childhood wardrobe I would look more of the part. Think Betsey Johnson & Hello Kitty + Sailor Moon= Harajuku Girl

Saturday we hopped on a train and headed into Tokyo and found ourselves in the hustle and bustle of the "Electric District". I love Tokyo so much, the culture is so incredibly different and yet familiar at the same time. Japan is rich in traditional values and so advanced in some of it's technology, and self expression through the street fashions- it is a land of great juxtaposition. The females are very overt in the way that they dress, and yet they are very feminine and quiet when it comes to self expression. It is crazy to see someone running out of an arcade in Harajuku, dressed as little bo peep, eating a Krispy Kreme doughnut with an arm full of Chanel bags, while beside them an old woman walks slowly dressed in a traditional kimono heading to an ancient temple within the same city block. What is really interesting though is that everyone seems to respect each other. There is next to no garbage on the streets, and there seems to be a lot of respect for tradition and the older generations here which is quite beautiful to see.

Major Trend- Tattoo designed sheer Tights

Topshop- Bright pastels everywhere

Rock N' Roll- Loved this dress

This mall had many levels, and in between were these cascading displays

These glasses were $200 and the sales guy was totally trying to pretend that it would be cool if we bought them... I think not- they look like something that a Venetian cartoon character would wear

We had no idea what was going on here- peoples names were drawn, then a contestant would go up to both of these girls and challenge them to "Rock, Paper, Scissors", who ever won got a flyer with their faces on it??

Look at the girls face on the far right- it is covered in jewels, and decorative items

Harajuku Girl

Crazy phone cases

Hawaii inspired decor

One of our favorite treats- Chocolate filled Koala Bears

Our hotel room- Remm Akihabara- Blayre is totally channeling Lost in Translation

The view from out hotel room

Incredible "Taco" joint- Hola Taco Cafe in Harajuku- and by taco I mean Japanese food crammed into a hard taco shell- so good!!

The Final Act: Last night my sister and parents arrived to join us for the week- so amazing that we are all here together! Today is my birthday and so we walked through some beautiful parks, and the big treat of the day was having afternoon tea at Ladureé at the famous Mitsokushi Department Store in the Ginza district of Tokyo. It was such a fantastic experience, everything is so incredibly beautiful, and the desserts are straight from the heavens!! The pictures will speak for themselves!

Jennifer's Glam shot in front of Laduree

The details are impeccable down to the gold embossed napkins

Fit for royalty..

A look at the dessert bar

Buddha Shrine in Yanaka Cemetery

Beautiful Cherry Blossom Trees lined the streets throughout the graveyard

Young Hipster Punks hang out on the grave stones

We walked into a Pachinko arcade/casino type place - everyone in there was in a trance. There is no law against smoking in these places so the smell was intense, and the music was blasting- we ran out before they told us to stop taking pictures!

Crazy neon colors everywhere

So here are some pictures of our trip so far- I have taken around 700 pictures already(it's out of control) I will post more later! You have probably spent the better part of you morning now looking through this, but I mean if you are at work and feeling like getting away for a bit- why now!!

Also check out this great article that Blayre wrote for Weddingbells.ca about what to look for when picking out a videographer on your wedding day- So proud of my guy! xoxo

Always Stay Graceful,



  1. Hey Laura!

    All your photos are ama-zing. Japan is next on list! Can't wait to see another post! =)


    Shivani xox

  2. WOW! Happy Birthday! It looks like you guys are having an incredible time that's so great that your family is out their to enjoy it with you! Isn't the Bhudda in Kamakura amazing? I was soooo impressed with how clean it was! You could probably lick the floors it was so clean! And I'm so glad you went to Lauduree too i knew you like it!

    Have so much fun I can't wait to see more pictures and MORE extra long posts I love reading and looking at everything. Have so much fun! If I think of some other places to visit I'll let you know

    Please go to one of the cat cafes too hahha. There are a few in Shinjuku. There is also a really nice garden/park in shinjuku (just travel to shinjuku station) that is worth a stroll through and an amazing japanese EVERYTHING store called tokyu hands - you can buy stuff like slimming leggings, vacuums, and little kitchen contraptions to make everything from eggs, to rice to seaweed look cute. there's some great department stores/malls all around there also.

    ne ways...rambling.I'll message you if I think of anything else! and yay for Blayre and his article!

  3. Hey Shivani, Thanks so much- you would love it here!! Sofie, we are heading to Harajuku with Jenn and my parents today, and will be going to Shinjuku as well- so cat cafe it is! Can't wait to see! It is so interesting to people watch here- I will try to post more tonight if I am not dead tired!! xoxo Laura


Thanks so much for all of the lovely comments!
Always Stay Graceful,
L. xoxo