Branded: Bad Girls Go Shopping

  • Jan Bardsley
  • Hiroko Hirakawa


The Japanese fascination with high-end luxury goods has captured worldwide attention for good reason. Japanese have become by far the largest group of consumers of American and European designer-brand fashion goods, their purchases accounting for 40 percent of this multi-billion-dollar global market.2 In 2002, a Merrill Lynch analyst stated that the dozen largest fashion houses in Europe owed one out of every three dollars in worldwide sales to Japanese consumers.3 Websites for leading brands such as Cartier, Chanel, and Louis Vuitton include Japanese-language pages and many high-end boutiques abroad regularly employ Japanese-speaking sales personnel.4 Among these brands, Louis Vuitton has been particularly successful in Japan since it was first promoted in 1977 by a new magazine for young women, JJ: By 1999, an estimated 40 percent of Japanese women owned at least one Louis Vuitton product5 and more than half of Japanese women in their twenties had a Louis Vuitton handbag.6 When Louis Vuitton opened its flagship store in the stylish Omotesandō shopping district in Tokyo in September 2002, it earned $1 million in opening day sales.7 Store openings for Hermès and Prada in 2001 were remarkably successful as well.8


Japanese Woman Brand Store Career Woman Luxury Brand Brand Fashion 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Laura Miller and Jan Bardsley 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jan Bardsley
  • Hiroko Hirakawa

There are no affiliations available

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