Awwwwwgust! ♫ ♫

Summer is going to be gone before we know it; the days will get cooler, I’ll stop sweating like crazy and the evenings spent sitting on the rooftop watching the sun go down over the city will be long gone.  So enjoy it while you got it.

A mixtape for the sweaty nights of August!   Download it here…

♫ ♫ Awwwwwwgust Mix Tape!  ♫ ♫

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Back on the Horse!

You know how some things just seem to slip away?  You just wake up one day and all of a sudden things look different?  I’m not talking about those nights that get “a little out of hand” and you wake up somewhere you don’t belong…those days are over (wink).  But you know how something triggers you to realize that your life doesn’t look quite how you last left it…you upgraded, you slummed it a little and you seem to have lost some of that precious time of yours.

Try throwing yourself into an insanely HOT summer in Tokyo where days become hours and the copious amount of sweat pouring down your body seems to take some of your brains & soul with it as it drips onto the steaming pavement.  Basically I am blaming the heat and insanity if Tokyo summer for my hiatus.  Not to mention the new sizzling tall drink of water in my life.

All excuses aside, Friday night at the SWAGGER Party, just 1 of 4 “must attend” parties in Tokyo that night, my friend Yu chan from Bambi&Faline asked my why I haden’t blogged since Okinawa?  Holy Banannas!  The horror!  When one of the raddest girls in Tokyo calls you on the fact that you have lost track of time, you are totally busted!  So here I am.  Back on the horse!  Yippee!

Here’s a lil photo diary of what has been shaking down in the wonderful world of moi.  I promise, the coming posts will be a lot less scattered and a lot more frequent!  Mwwah!

On a lone wolf wander too Kamakura, I stumbled upon a crazy water matsuri (festival) and ended up spending the entire evening drinking Nihonshuu with incredible grannies and gramps!

Who knew one, ok two, banana treats could make a girl so happy?!?!This man was almost as obsessed with me any my purple hair as I was with him and his…This sign actually says “CHEESE BALL”!   Need I say more?The Magic of Light & Wonder!Haunted house….Tokyo Antique Jambouree.  Try spending hours drooling over the most amazing antiques & only going home with one little treasure.  Gypsys don’t have homes, remember!A day with the fishies!Took a slowboat home.

Kabuki!Magu…aka Magblue!Mademoiselle Yulia’s new album launch party!  おめでとう!!! Just the begnning of her tour with the amazing Trippple Nippples.  I am so blessed to have such talented amigos.

Cult signs…oops! I mean gang signs.Angry Young Robotz Tour Tokyo…backstage with the maga babes Yuka, Qrea & Nabe…aka Tripple Nippples!  Such an insane show, I had to escape the messy mosh pit cause I thought my earing had ripped out and blood pouring down my neck.  Real life, sweat was running down my neck and I am getting a little too old for mosh pits.  Ha!The weather in Tokyo had been pretty obscure this summer and the little quakes and shakes keep on happening.  But the skies are gorgeous and as always, so are the people.

XOXO

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Oh-Oh-Oh Okinawa. Part 2.

It’s hotter than hell in Tokyo this weekend, and there is no cool weather at the end of this hot, humid, summer tunnel.  Yesterday as I walked the streets of Aoyama, I could feel the heat from the sun above me contesting with the heat from the payment below, and man oh man was it a sweaty one!

All I can think of now is that blue ocean that I was swimming in only 7 days ago in Okinawa, the southern islands of Japan…was it even real??  I am now fantasizing all the big buildings, loud music and dirty hot concrete of Shibuya being washed away and replaced by a turquoise sea full of beautiful fishies and bright coral…

A storm a brewing and a beautiful scene for our ocean side breakfast!

Trying to decide if the storm was going to come our way...

One of the eeriest, most amazing moments of my life, waiting for the storm

Waiting for the rain, but it never came!

The storm passed and we went searching for another beach on the island....it was like a whole different land. Different sand, sunshine and flying humans!

Time for another amazing dinner....mmmm mmmmm

A bit of Amomori (the worlds strongest Japanese booze) and redbull...next thing we new, we were rocking out in islands one and only kareoke booth.

I went on a little adventure, exploring the amazing old neighbourhoods on Kume Jima....felt like a different world

さとうきび! Sugar cane everywhere!!!!

Really, nothing about this felt like Japan....except that tree.

All the houses which looked empty with no windows, all had voices coming from the inside, except this one. But I am still not convinced that it was uninhabited!

Laundry day.

Our last day on the beach. We found this little piece of heaven without a sould in sight!

This is what I want Shibuya to turn into!

We waited all day for the tide to go out so the sea snakes would leave us alone and Leon could swim to the other side!

It was so hard to walk away from this gorgeous ocean!

Pineapple Fields!

Sayonara Okinawa Pineapple Party!

Still hoping that Shibuya warps into Okinawa overnight….

A girl can dream can’t she???

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Truth. Not Copy.

In a time when ideas are being recycled, designs are being replicated, and big cities millions of miles away from each other are starting to look the same; true individuality and authenticity can sometimes take a little bit of effort to find.  When I come across people doing exactly what they are inspired to do, when I can feel their passion even when they aren’t in the room…That is beauty.  That is truth.  That is what I live to love.

Here are 2 videos that have really inspired me recently.  Watch, feel their passion, then go out and live yours.

“Let yourself be silently drawn by the strong pull of what you really love, it will not lead you astray”

~Rumi

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Oh Oh Oh Okinawa….part 1

I think I have a serious addiction to the sun.  When I am in Tokyo and it is sunny I have this pull, something makes me feel like I HAVE to be outside.  It’s not just that I want to be outside enjoying the weather, but that I MUST.  Like it is my duty, like I owe it to someone (still trying to figure out who?).

Last weekend I fulfilled my sunshine duties on the beaches of Okinawa in Southern Japan.  We went to Kume Jima, a strange little island that is like some kind of time war;  but I can’t figure out what time it’s stuck in…there are old houses that look like they have been there for a 100 years, there are tacky resorts with early 80s flare, on top of one of the mountains there are Castle ruins from 1314, there are little Japanese izakayas serving more kinds of seaweed than you can imagine, and yes, the island has 1 karaoke booth, which we obviously occupied one night.

In case I didnt love Japan enough before, I went south and my love grew deeper!  Here is some of what went down on our mini break in The Land of the HOT Rising Sun…

Quaint little town at dusk

The cutest man with the chubbiest cheeks preparing the most delicious meal

The best seaweed dish of the trip!

Took a boat to heaven....I mean a sand island

I'm the king of the castle...You're the dirty rascal!

ocean pools filled with tropical fishies!

Create your own Jungle adventure...

I think these were family graves...found all over the place in the most random places

Stopped at an abandoned-looking shop for some local beers and a sun set

1 beer = 150¥. Cheaper than the combini!

Takoyaki & Manga!

Them clouds were crazy...and we didnt know they were bringing in the next days creepy storm

The sweet old lady who served up the brews thought we were coming to watch the planes, when we were really there for the sunset. But I gotta say, the brief moment of that plane taking off was pretty awesome!

I became obsessed with these little crabbies! They are a little like me...traveling around with their homes on their back, sometimes changing for a prettier "house" which also doubles as an outfit. These 3 helped each other warp up to the next level.

More Okinawa adventures to come….

X

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Look a Lil Further & You Might Find Royalty

There are so many amazing artists and artisans in Tokyo and the whole of Japan, sometimes we just need to get a little lost and travel longer than we normally would to see what they are doing and learn about what inspires them.  So on Saturday night I parked my bicycle at Shibuya station and jumped on the train bound for a place I had never heard of in Tokyo called Oomori.  Recently I have been a bit of a bike maniac and have been challenging myself to see how long I can go without riding on public transport, but I must say that I happily gave up on my own competition to support my friends Daphne & Avu and see what they had been creating.

With my dodgy map that I had drawn because I am stuck in the 90s and dont have an iphone, I slowly made my way down the quiet suburban streets…

Spotted this beauty on my walk from the station. Thought this gorgeous young thing resembled me in my tender youth...

Something about going further and further into the burbs in Tokyo, you see more and more animated characters doing the advertising for restaurants & shops....It's working!!!

And finally I made it…but first a lil background check…

I met Daphne Mohajer when I was in Tokyo last Autumn and we immediately had a million things to talk about.  First of all, her tattoo of fabric scissors layed out on her arm assured me that we would have a mutual understanding.  You don’t fuck around with fabric scissors.  They are just too important and have been at times, the most valuable thing in my possession.  Beyond a mutual appreciation for scissors, we are also both Canadians (shhhhh, don’t tell anyone).  Most people can’t guess where I am from, even when at home in the Great White North, and I generally like to keep it that way.  But Daphne was awesome and we could crack jokes that I never get to crack since I have been living away from the Mother land for the past 6 years….she is kind of my first Canadian friend on the road!  Wooohooo!  Anyways, besides all that nonsense, she is also one of the raddest girls, most talented designers and creative women I have ever met.

So as I bang on and on about how much I love her, obvisously her boyfriend Avu is genius too.  Together they put together their first joint art show which “Explores the theme of Celebrity and ‘Who gives a fuck about a royal wedding’ by making a giant king and queen out of garbage and textiles.” at Dorothy Vacance , a quaint shop worth the the treck to Oomori, Tokyo.

Me and the gorgeous genius Daphne. I must say I felt quite ridiculous wandering the streets of Oomori in this insanely non-wall-flower-esque jacket that weighs a million pounds!

Daphne's Queen, along side one of her gorgeous printed dresses & necklaces she made too!

Avu's King, but I am sad to say I didnt capture an image of Avu himself!

Hundreds of pillow printed with sexy & serious images...

Conversing with the wine bags....will you provide us with more???

Gettin' served a fine glass o wine!

Katie & Yuri just hangin' around with the monkeys

After a fun adventure to the burbs, drinking wine from cartoon lips and chit chatting on the street on a balmy summer eve, we all headed back to the bright lights of Shibuya.  I collected my bike and rode to the Tokyo Dandy 3rd Anniversary Party!  I was so eager to be back on my bike and so anxious to dance that I had a bit of a brain-body melt down and I actually fell off my bike.  I wasn’t in any kind of accident, I just fell over.  Turned up the party with blood running down my leg and tried to forget about the pain caused to both my body and my ego.  I was a lil distracted and only managed to leave the party with 1 photo.  The lovely & masqued Leo Candycane, along with Emiko from Dressed Undressed and my favorite Champagne friend U chan from Faline

What a night!  What a mix of people doing great things in this great country!

XoXo

Amber Joy

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The Best Place at The Best Time.

Last Saturday was a gorgeous sunny summer day in Tokyo and I spent the morning lounging in the sun in the park, studying Japanese.  It was difficult to tear myself away from the chilled out state that I worked so hard to calm myself into, but once I was on my bike cruising down the hot pavement, I could feel my Saturday Power start to rise up again.

I wasn’t exactly sure what was waiting for me at my destination.   All I knew was that Hors Pistes was some kind of design workshop supporting the arts and experimentation put on by the Centre Pompidou.  It was the opening day and the contageously colorful Andrea Crews was hosting Saturday’s workshop and opening party with the help of the oh-so-insanely innovative Yoruko Banzai.  Yohei (Banzai Brains) is one of my oldest friends in Tokyo, so I was going to help him out and make masks at his workshop.

it was great to see so many people getting creative at M Space & Bar in Ebisu.  M is a space that I have grown to really love and appreciate, as sometimes it is tough to find places that support and exhibit amazing artists in Tokyo.

One of the crew from Andrea Crews

Some of what was created at the Workshop

The dress rehersal

Little did I know that come nightfall, I would be dressed in one of the wild dresses created on the Andrea Crews side of the workshop, be donning the red monster mouth mask that I made with Banzai…and be the Ringleader of the whole Banzai opening party performance.

Yup....that's crazy me! Photo from neonmag.com

All I can say is that, thank God I had a mask!  It allowed me to turn into some crazed lunatic leading all the other masked maniacs in front of all room full of party goers.      Since I was in the show I couldn’t get any pics, but see more pics here!

After transforming back into my regular self and popping on my usual 90’s rappers girlfriend outfit, I jumped back on my bike and headed for Ni-chome (aka Gay Town) to see the Trippple Nippples perform at Fancy Him.  The streets were packed with people and it was the first true sign that summer is here and Tokyo is ready to SWEAT IT OUT all the way until October!  Yessss!

The day I met Yohei (Banzai) over 5 years ago was also the day I met Qrea, Yuka & Nabe…aka the Trippple Nippples.  On that day I helped them fill rubber gloves with milky booze to squirt out at the Audience at one of their first ever shows at MEAT (cult party in Tokyo).  Here’s a lil throw back to 5 years ago…

Trippple Nippples back in the day at MEAT

Yuka and The Fashion Ramone...aka Gallermic

I know that the Nippples ALWAYS guarantee an amazing show and unforgettable performance, so no way was I gonna miss this!  Bumped into Yuka in the street and she made me smile and giggle, cause I love her so much!

Such a good look for you Yuka!

Trippy!

Genius burkas made by the lovely Daphne Mohajer!

I Still LOVE YOU!

Qrea was working her magic on the other side of the stage and it was so hectic on the dancefloor I couldnt get to her!

just a little glimpse of what what happening out on the streets...

Riding home I bumped into the YATT boys, more old friends in Harajuku at 4am.  What an amazing day in Tokyo and a solid reminder of all the rad friends I have in this incredible city.

I Still ♡ You Tokyo!

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