Wouldn’t it be fun to be able to wear clothing and accessories that feature a theme you truly feel passionate about? Well, understandably, you may not want to go as far as this young man we featured in one of our previous posts as a leader in otaku fashion, but if you like the anime “Mobile Suit Gundam”, you can now wear Gudam inspired apparel to your heart’s content, and make it look stylish too!
You may have read our story about how Gundam has been made into tofu, but this time, Bandai Co. Ltd., has set up a specialty Gundam apparel shop for all the fans out there who want to dress up fashionably in the spirit of Gundam. The shop, called STRICT-G, has opened in 2 locations, at the “Gundam Front Tokyo” site on the 7th floor of Diver City Tokyo Plaza in the Odaiba Area, and in the Shizuoka Service Area on the Shin-Tomei Expressway.
The shop carries not only original Gundam themed clothing and accessories, but items produced in collaboration with well-known Japanese fashion brands such as EDWIN, JAM HOME MADE and SWANS. And the best part is that these items won’t make you look like a real otaku!
You can see the products on the STRICT G website, and I’m sure you’ll agree that they’re definitely not the typical otaku wear – the people at Bandai have made sure that everything is stylish as well as functional.
There are EDWIN denim jeans with the cut and stitching based on the designs of military uniforms that appear in Gundam, sunglasses from SWANS made in the same color patterns as the mobile suit machines in the anime and also bracelets from JAM MADE HOME that match the colors of the Gundam mobile suit. There are original items produced by Bandai as well, such as jackets with pleats and pockets modeled after parts of different mobile suits.
Bandai has actually been producing their own line of clothing for close to 30 years, so this type of business is not new to them. And their target is not limited to just children. There should be plenty of Gundam fans in the 20-40’s age group who grew up watching the anime and would find Gundam related products irresistible. Well okay, the items don’t come cheap, with jeans and sunglasses costing over $200 and jackets priced at about $400. But you have to admit the products are designed beautifully, and there are probably many fans out there who are willing to shell out that amount of money if it means they can share in the Gundam experience.
According to Bandai, they are also hopeful that they may be able to promote the Gandum fashion line overseas, especially as many foreign tourists, particularly those from other parts of Asia, are expected to visit Diver City Tokyo Plaza. In addition, there may also be a market in countries such as France and Italy where Japanese subculture including anime has gained a certain amount of recognition. There may not be any plans to open more STRICT G stores in the near future, but Bandai is apparently quite enthusiastic about expanding their Gundam apparel line and they already have another collaboration with the military fashion brand ALPHA in the works.
So, we’ll probably be hearing more about STRICT G’s Gundam fashion line in the near future. We may also be seeing a lot more stylishly dressed Gundam fans around! Well, I guess that’s a win-win situation that makes both Bandai and Gundam fans happy!
・Here are some of the Gundam fashion items available from STRICT G:
SHIRT ¥13,440 ($168), CARGO SHORTS ¥18,900 ($236), BRACELET ¥5,985 ($75)
T-SHIRT ¥10,290 ($129), CARGO SHORTS ¥18,900 ($236), BELT ¥12,600 ($157), BRACELET ¥5,985 ($75)
T-SHIRT ¥3,990 ($50)
T-SHIRT ¥3,990 ($50)
DENIM JEANS ¥20,790 ($260)
SUNGLASSES ¥12,600 ($157)
DEERSKIN BRACELETS ¥5,985 ($75)
LEATHER BELT ¥12,600 ($157)