Harajuku Girls Spotted in San Francisco: Shopping in Union Square

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I’ve long been interested in Japanese culture and one aspect of it called Harajuku, which takes its name from the Tokyo neighborhood that is ground-zero for teen culture and for dressing up in a costume-like mash-up of styles based on pop culture, anime characters, musicians, storybook characters, and others.

Harajuku is fun. It’s dress-up for young adults and a display of world culture as seen through the prism of young Japanese people. Imagine, then, my delight upon seeing Harajuku girls, right in San Francisco’s Union Square, where I had taken my daughter to do some back-to-school shopping. I talked to these young women, and they said they were from the Bay Area. Harajuku is apparently quite alive far from its main district.

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Following are some other sights from our shopping day in Union Square. Window display:

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Street signs and mixed architecture styles, in this old neighborhood:

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Local color:

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And racks of clothes that begged the question, “What year is this?”, as we browsed through Forever 21 (Forever 41, anyone?) while Soft Cell kept repeating on the store’s soundtrack.

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Photos by Susan Sachs Lipman

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5 responses to “Harajuku Girls Spotted in San Francisco: Shopping in Union Square

  1. Just an All-Around GREAT post!

  2. Thank you, Dear! It was a great day.

  3. What would Forever 41 sell? Mom jeans and sweatpants? :)

  4. Yes, totally!

    Great to see you here, Linda.

    • My LO is a skater girl, but I can’t stand thigns with words printed everywhere- like those jackets. I also don’t like those connected shirt/dress skirt thigns. She’s tall and skinny and those thigns never fit right.I love the boys jeans and wonder if they would fit her? Those are cute! She likes a lot of boys clothes anyway. The plaid dress is cute too. I love moto jackets, but I can’t tell what those button thigns are on it or what they say.I’m not a big fan of tons of words on clothes unless it’s a shirt with a saying on front and that’s it.

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