Japanese wedding dress retailers have been inundated with calls from customers looking for a unique wedding dress to match their style, but some are now saying they can’t compete with their traditional counterparts.
The popular Japanese wedding dressing brands have been hit with a wave of online shopping, and many have been forced to open their doors for customers to pick up the products in stores.
“They (customers) want something that will match their own style, so we’ve been asked for wedding dresses,” said Haruna Fujita, a Japanese designer and owner of Japanese-style wedding dresses online store japanese bridal shop, The Bamboo Bride.
She said she had been asked to take on a job with a large Japanese brand after she posted her wedding dress online last year.
“The first few months were tough, but once the Japanese brands started to open up their doors to the West, it has been a huge boost for the business,” Fujita said.
“People are looking for something unique, so I was a little worried that there wouldn’t be anything in my shop that I could do.
But it is great that the Japanese companies are coming to the Western market now and selling in stores.”
The first major Japanese online wedding store opened in the United States in 2007, and more have since opened.
But Fujita’s business has grown and her store now has stores in Australia, Canada, Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and South Korea.
She also sells her wedding dresses in her own online store, The Beauty Shop, and says that the demand has been so strong that her online shop has doubled its sales.
“I have been receiving emails and texts from people from the United Kingdom to Australia, asking if I can have a wedding dress in my store,” she said.
In some parts of Japan, a traditional Japanese wedding is not the only way to celebrate a romantic day.
The Japanese word for “day”, nagasuto, literally means “the day that falls on your head”.
“In Japan, nagashisutake (the wedding dress) is a big thing, so there are different ways to do the ceremony,” Fujitasaid.
“In the US, it’s about wearing a dress with a neckline, or you can have your friends over and give them the dress to wear, and they can wear it and then you get married,” she explained.
However, many Japanese people have been looking for more practical wedding dresses.
“Some people want something in the shape of a flower, so they have their friends and family bring flowers to give you,” Fujittasaid.
She believes there are more than 50 traditional Japanese dresses to choose from.
But many brides have been asking for a traditional wedding dress that can be worn for formal occasions, such as weddings and funerals.
“We don’t want to wear a dress to a wedding,” said Fujita.
“It’s not that we don’t like it, but we don.
We just want it to match what we wear at home.”
Some Japanese wedding shops have been taking a cue from traditional wedding dresses to stock more traditional Japanese styles, such a dress made from Japanese woven bamboo and decorated with rose petals and flowers.
“Japanese people have always loved flowers and flowers have a strong sense of style,” said the owner of the Japanese wedding shop, Katsuhiro Suzuki, adding that many people had expressed their desire to buy a traditional dress to put on a wedding ceremony.
“There are also some traditional Japanese weddings where we have the traditional dress made of bamboo, which can make the ceremony much more memorable,” Suzuki said.
The new trend of online stores offering traditional wedding gowns is making traditional Japanese bridal shops even more popular.
“Customers are looking at the different options, and we’re seeing a lot of interest in traditional Japanese style,” Fujimoto said.
But for some traditionalists, the trend is starting to get out of control.
“Japan is becoming a country where you have to choose your style carefully,” said Japanese wedding designer Katsuya Fujimoto.
“At the moment, there are so many things that are trendy, and it’s really difficult to differentiate between styles.”
You can’t get too much of a cut and it makes it hard to keep up with the trend.
“But some traditional wedding outfits are still making a comeback, with some brides wearing wedding dresses made from reclaimed bamboo, traditional Japanese bamboo, or traditional Japanese silk threads.”
My daughter is really into it,” said Katsu Yoshikawa, a Tokyo-based designer.”
She likes the way it feels on her body, and she loves the way the dress is dyed, and the way there is the pattern of the silk,” she added.”
If she’s not happy with a particular wedding dress we might do a bit of research and look for something that suits her,” Yoshikawa said.
Some Japanese women are choosing to keep their traditional Japanese look