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Ashley Clarke

Journalist based in London & Tokyo

Location icon London/Tokyo

Naomi Watanabe Is Taking Down Sizeism in Tokyo-And Becoming a Fashion Icon

Naomi Watanabe is gazing out from the 46th floor of a slim glass tower in Tokyo, taking in the sunset. Marveling at the endless expanse of lights before her, it's almost funny that the comedian should be so enthralled, considering that the city below is pulsing with people who know her name.

The Business of Fashion
Who's Driving Japanese Style?

TOKYO, Japan - Masataka Hattori knows that his taste captures the zeitgeist like no other and he isn't afraid to say so. "To put it bluntly, I only trust myself. As long as I think it's good, it must be good," says the unlikely tough guy whose sensual styling was a highlight of Tokyo's Amazon Fashion Week, which wrapped up this weekend.

what the closure of fruits magazine means for japanese street style | read | i-D

After two decades spent documenting the street style of Japanese teens across an impressive 233 issues, FRUiTS Magazine announced this weekend that it had printed its last copy. While the much discussed death of print media was perhaps a predictable cause of its demise, the actual reason for the magazine's closure that its founder, editor and chief photographer Shoichi Aoki gave was altogether more surprising.

The Business of Fashion
Japan Wants More Fashion Designers from Abroad

TOKYO, Japan - For young graduates and seasoned designers alike, it sounds like a dream job. Getting hired to work in the Tokyo design studio of Comme des Garçons, Sacai or one of Japan's many cult streetwear brands gets people like Ellie Connor-Phillips very excited.

is male beauty the next step for body positivity? | watch | i-D

Grace Wales Bonner fall/winter 16 The term 'male beauty' is, in many ways, an oxymoron. Men, multi-faceted beings though we are, are slaves to an unwritten rulebook thick with things we shouldn't really be doing in order to preserve our fragile masculinity. You know, things like wearing skirts, or painting our nails.

Bed j.w. Ford Tokyo Spring 2017 Fashion Show

It's always a little awkward when a newcomer to the runway has a name that nobody knows quite how to say. Bed j.w. Ford (simply referred to as "bed-ford," and not "bed jay-double-you ford," in case you were stuttering), is one such case.

How Kawaii culture is changing the world

While Japan still retains fame for its rich cultural history and a bent for futuristics, over the past few years the home of sushi, sake and Sailor Moon has been redefining itself as something slightly more... cuddly.

The Foreigner Flipside

By Ashley Clarke | Posted on January 1, 2016 Any foreigner who remembers their first time in Japan will remember it well. It's not so much that we have entered somewhere we are not welcome, but rather a sense of finding ourselves in a kind of futuristic fairyland.

Make-Up Made Me a Feminist

It started in my mother's bathroom. I was sixteen, it was summer, and I was stood in front of the mirror with my sunburnt hooter staring me in the face. 'Just try a bit,' Mum had said, 'It'll make it look better.' I did try a bit. And then a bit more.

Trending at London Fashion Week: Culottes

As the A-line skirt is dropped in favour of the A-line trouser, we assess the pros and cons of the fashion industry's latest love-in BY Ashley Clarke | 16 September 2014 By default, the spring/summer 2015 shows of which we are currently in the throes should roughly dictate what we'll be wearing come next year.

The fashion handbook to 2015

Goodbye 2014, hello 2015. We salute the big fashion stories of this year and look forward to the next year's headlines BY Lisa Armstrong, Ellie Pithers, Sophie Warburton, Ashley Clarke | 02 January 2015 Photo: Rex Features As seasons come and go, its hard to keep your finger on the pulse.
The new season updates you need to know about

It's all in the jeans Denim heads from around the world salute 'the most important fabric of the 20th century' in Amy Leverton's book Denim Dudes (£16.95, Laurence King). Hitoshi Uchida (pictured, above left) owns an old-school denim shop in Tokyo. 'I compare denim to growing trees,' he says.

Should you wear suncream every day?

We're told to cover up, and slip, slop, slap. But is it really necessary to wear SPF everyday? Photo: WIREIMAGE Sun exposure is one of beauty's biggest dilemmas: we all crave the salubrious glow the sun gives, but fear the havoc overexposure can wreak on our skin.

Logomania: low-high is the new high-low

Logos have become the focus of fashionable humour. As the runway starts referencing knock-off fashion and mass consumer brands, are designers redefining what luxury means? BY Ashley Clarke | 09 July 2014 Photo: Isidore Montag Trends in fashion tend to start at the top and trickle down.

From bimbo to Bojo: the blonde evolution

As Boris Johnson makes a bid for parliament, is his political destiny written in his hair? Photo: Tolga Akmen/LNP/REX Challenged only by Michael Fabricant, Boris Johnson boasts the most admired head of hair in British politics. And now that he has thrown his hat back into the ring for a seat in Parliament, its medium-term future in the spotlight seems secured.

New exhibition to put powerful women and their wardrobes on the map

A new exhibition headed for London's Design Museum will explore the relationship between powerful women and their wardrobes BY Ashley Clarke | 03 July 2014 Photo: STEPHEN LOCK Baroness Thatcher famously said that she wore her Sunday best seven days a week, so that she was always prepared.
Six of the best gifts for dogs

Dressing your dog is, let's face it, a minefield - nobody wants to have man's best friend looking like Paris Hilton's tutu-toting chihuahua circa 2001. The key is to look like you're not trying too hard. Barbour does good waxed coats if practicality's your prime concern, but for something a bit more modern and fun, American Apparel makes these dog hoodies.

The Problem With Feminism in RuPaul's Drag Race

I'm not saying we need to dismantle drag culture and reprimand queens guilty of saying hunty and fishy as vile misogynists of the patriarchal agenda (god forbid), but I definitely am saying that if you're going to impersonate women, then it's only right to respect women too.

Is Fashion Criticism Dying Out?

All publicity is good publicity, or so the old maxim goes. But in the fashion press, the idea of publishing a negative review of a fashion show isn't something that gets realised very often.

Charlotte Olympia celebrates the World Cup

Accessories designer Charlotte Dellal has created a capsule collection of flag-emblazoned clutch bags to celebrate the World Cup BY Ashley Clarke | 27 June 2014 Football and fashion don't typically make the best of bedfellows. David marrying Victoria is likely the closest they will meet, and I warrant that you'll never see Cristiano Ronaldo on any reputable best-dressed list.

Front row tickets for Milan Fashion Week to be auctioned off for £55,000

Tickets to some of fashion's most exclusive catwalk shows sold to raise money for artists' centre BY Ashley Clarke | 23 July 2014 Top fashion show tickets are hard to come by. Strictly invitation only, doors are fiercely guarded by no-nonsense bouncers and clipboard-wielding PRs.

Todd Lynn on what makes a good high street handbag

The London Fashion Week designer expands his collection for Debenhams by launching a handbag collection BY Ashley Clarke | 03 September 2014 Designer and high street collaborations are everywhere, and no high street store has a designer-collab portfolio fatter than Debenhams. Todd Lynn's womenswear collection for them is going particularly well: according to the store, it has proven a 'big hit' with customers, and is now expanding to handbags.

Hoi Polloi's Midnight Supper

To ensure London Fashion Week went out with a glittering bang, an intimately raucous midnight supper was held at Hoi Polloi, the recently opened Bistrotheque restaurant nestled in the Ace Hotel London. The star-studded affair was not only held to celebrate the end of fashion week but also to launch the Shoreditch-based restaurant's new Supper Service (10.30pm to Midnight; 1am Thursday to Saturday).

Generation Next

As Nicola Formichetti's eagerly anticipated 'second drop' hits the stores, his much-hyped collaboration with Nick Knight continues to send his loyal followers into a frenzy online. Handpicked by Formichetti himself, his inspired online casting process turns the notion of global campaign stars on its head.

Ponystep | #DIESELTRIBUTE Launch Party

East London's Hoxton Gallery was the setting for Diesel's latest unveiling: #DIESELTRIBUTE - Nicola Formichetti's debut capsule collection for the Italian denim brand. Selected pieces from the highly-anticipated collection adorned the gallery walls, and a steady flow of champagne & vodka kept everyone in the party spirit.

Vauxhall Presents: Made in England

Building on their already impressive list of collaborations (which includes Louise Gray, Gary Card and Fred Butler), the forward thinking people at Vauxhall have joined forces with Katy England - one of the world's most coveted and successful stylists - to create a new short film.

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