If you have asked a Japanese decades before, what is a steampunk?
He would have probably looked you like you have gone completely mad.
But, recently the Steampunk has become a rising star on the Japanese fashion scene as more and more Japanese are interested in the movement.
To introduce you into the matter and provide you with some basic background of what is actually happening in the land of the rising sun,, we will only point here that:
There is Tokyo based steampunk ensemble ‘Strange Artifact’ the band that comes up with their own steampunk accessories label Poorman’s Gold Label.
These brand is not only on sale at their concerts but there are also some specialized stores in various locations in the city.
There are also some steampunk events on regular basis, SteamGarden.
The major name brands, mostly street fashion brands, have picked up the steampunk on regular basis. Among which, Alice and the Pirates; Metamorphoses; Temps de Fille; and Innocent World.
Step by step, we have came to the biggest and the latest fashion addition going steam: h.NAOTO.
Everyone speak about h.NAOTO.
Everything screams h.NAOTO when in Japan. And with reason as this have been one of the most visual key type among the steam brands.
Famous, and good, and exemplary as it is, it has collaborated with artists of different disciplines including musicians.
The key to the h.NAOTO authenticity is that these brand isn’t consisted of the typical Victorian style, everyone will expect.
But completely the opposite, h.NAOTO is a mash up of visual kei combined with a contemporary steampunk.
The historical elements are here and there but they are mostly faithful to their original aesthetic which is quite cool for those who aren’t really preferable of the clean lines and Victorian elements.
For those curious ones, you can visit the creator and founder Naoto Hirooka’s facebook fan page.
Even though most are pieces I wouldn’t personally wear, I applaud and salute the brand’s initiation for making step further into steampunk fashion while at the same time keeping up to their own aesthetic in the process.
I hopefully believe the others will follow this vision that will only enrich the global movement.