Hyper Japan is a big Japanese culture event held every year in London (aside from the last couple of years) and it showcases everything from traditional Japanese crafts and kawaii fashions to anime related products and local artists.
It was definitely on a slightly smaller scale than in previous years, but I had such a fun weekend and I’m looking forward to sharing with you some of the kawaii products and amazing creators I discovered over a couple of days at the event. This post has my highlights and next week I’ll share my favourite kawaii artists in more detail.
There were a few big stalls focusing on all of the cute character goods, with Tofu Cute and ARTBOX having the most on offer. I picked up some cute Suatelier stickers from ARTBOX, but they also had a ton of Pusheen merchandise and Rilakkkuma too. Tofu Cute were selling a lot of products with their original designs and they had a lot of Japanese snacks available too.
Fashion & Jewellery
There were a lot of stalls selling kawaii fashion and accessories, with Dreamy Bows (who stocked ACDC RAG) and Yoyo the Ricecorpse’s colourful character clothing seeming to be the most popular. The bright and bold jewellery from Kam Creates and Sstutter’s statement animal designs were amazingly creative.
The kimonos from Kimono Prêt-à-Porter and Fuji Kimono were really beautiful too. I actually got to see the kimonos from Prêt-à-Porter worn on stage at the fashion show, where they showcased their easy to wear kimono designs.
There were quite a few stalls demonstrating traditional Japanese design techniques, including Oxidate Design and Nijiyura Europe. Doki Japanese Tableware had so much crockery available that had been made in Japan, with both traditional and cute character designs available. I also discovered Kimono Kraft, who recycles vintage kimonos to create incredible bags and accessories.
I was completely drawn to the Miffy x Matchado stand whilst at the event and managed to get hold of the matcha dorayaki, matcha brownie and the matcha sundae. As you can probably guess, I’m a bit of a matcha fan! Everything they served was absolutely delicious and I’m so glad I’m still able to get hold of their delicious baked goods in their online store.
Fashion Show & Cosplay Parade
In the fashion show we were lucky to see some amazing outfits put together by some very creative individuals. I was very impressed by crunchyumbrellacosplay’s super kawaii look during the individual show and after seeing her intricately decorated nails afterwards, you can really tell how much effort everyone puts into their outfits.
Alongside, we got to see a few pieces put together by some Japanese stores (including ACDC RAG and 6% DOKIDOKI straight out of Harajuku) and fashion brands. Uber Dandy Kimono describe themselves as ‘traditional kimono with a hint of madness’. They take the traditional kimono give it a modern twist, either in the patterns used or the redesign. I absolutely loved them!
The Cosplay Parade was more of a showcase of people’s looks rather than a competition, but some were so well thought out and put together! Some highlights for me were Spy x Family, the big Jujutsu Kaisen group cosplay and the original characters of bubblegum_robots. I also met Bubbles from the Powerpuff Girls (shadowbrightcosplay) walking around too!
I know that the event experienced some challenges and upsets this year, especially on the Saturday, but I’m hopeful that next year the event will be back with all of those creases ironed out. I would definitely attend again, as there were honestly so many lovely artists and creators ready to chat to you about their work and share the parts of Japanese culture that they work in, love, or that completely inspire them.
Emma is an English teacher who travels a lot. Adventuring around the world is her passion, with Japan being one of her favourite destinations. She loves baking, photography, sweet treats, and all things Disney. If Emma was a Pokémon, she’d definitely be a Pikachu.