DURAS recently released catalog shots of their new spring lineup. (BLENDA model Reiko Ide looks stunning as usual!) Click the link to see more, and of course, feel free to leave any comments over at the forum.
Ank Rouge recently updated their website with shots of their new spring lineup. (The actual clothes have been up on the 109 shopping site for a few weeks now, too, but seeing clothes on a model is always more fun, right?) Follow the cut for images and commentary, and always, hit up the forum with your own thoughts and opinions.
And on the subject of Buffalo Bobs, Tokyo Telephone has a fantastic fantastic round-up of recent Buffalo Bobs items, how the brand compares to other 109-2 brands, and what Noir’s introduction means for their future.
I don’t think I’ve said this about anything onii-kei related in ages, but Buffalo Bobs Noir sounds actually exciting. Bobs and Transform were always my favorite onii-kei brands, rising above Vanquishes and Fugas with slightly better quality construction and even occasionally tasteful designs. Noir basically cuts out everything I didn’t like about Bobs and puts it in different lines, out of my sight.
Not sure if this signals a mild 109-2 resurgence, or if it’s just another symptom of the inexorable end, but I am happy to have a new(ish) source of black leather jackets.
Buffalo Bobs has overcome its split-personality by simply splitting itself into three separate brands under the umbrella of Buffalo Bobs.
Buffalo Bobs Noir: "Mode" style (this is a succinct way of saying that it attempts to emulate the feeling of high fashion and edgy trends)
Buffalo Bobs Crystal: Host-style.
Buffalo Bobs Originals: Denim and streetwear.
Buffalo Bobs Noir is the headliner right now. The subtitle of “Noir” fits the brand perfectly, combining a decidedly monochrome colour palette with drapes, a looser fit throughout and an overall feeling of “oppression”. While this doesn’t exactly sound enjoyable on paper, it is a feeling that translates to clothing very well. In a lot of ways it resembles a more domesticated version of Julius’ vision of a post-apocalyptic grungy Tokyo, with a price point that makes experimentation a bit easier to attempt (even though Buffalo Bobs is beginning to sell more and more “premium” items).
Buffalo Bobs Crystal is the polar opposite of this, focusing on the rather unchanging ideal of host-style. Shiny suits, fur, glitter, and admittedly cheesy prints abounds. In my humble opinion, this is not a style that is aging particularly well, but those who love it will definitely find themselves feeling at home donned in Crystal wares.
Buffalo Bobs Originals is the most “normal” of the three brands; it focuses on basic streetwear. If it must be classified, I would say that gyaru-o would be the closest you could come to accurately describing it. Many of the previous Buffalo Bobs items fall into this category, and there are some new ones, including … this denim jumpsuit.
The fate of the standalone “Buffalo Bobs” branding isn’t clear; many items are still being sold under that name on the official web shop, even though many other items were renamed. I suspect that this name will continue to encompass “general” items.
Buffalo Bobs has managed to do what a lot of 109-2 brands have neglected to do; they’ve widened their appeal away from their initial demographic without forgetting them (one of the best things about Buffalo Bobs is that they continually restock their most popular items). I don’t doubt that Buffalo Bobs will continue its expansion into more styles as time goes on.
For now, it seems Buffalo Bobs has found its home in the darkness of noir.