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One of a Kind Tailor Made Shirts from [FUJISAN FACTORY STORE] are Items You’ll Want to Wear 5 Years & 10 Years from Now♪
post : 2019.11.27 20:00
Everyone has their own standards when selecting clothes, but how do you usually pick what to wear? Comfort, color, shape, size, whether it looks good on you, how you would coordinate it with things you own, these may be some of the factors you take into consideration. Some may simply choose through inspiration.
Some time while ago, a book suggesting the “ten-item wardrobe” became a best seller. Did you get a chance to read it? When we think of France and its people, we may think it’s a country full of stylish people, but according to the book, many French people do not own dozens and dozens of pieces of clothing. Rather than having a full wardrobe of less expensive clothes, it suggests that by carefully selecting perfect fitting, high quality clothes, you can enjoy great style.
In this article, I’ll introduce a great shop for our readers who, despite an overflowing wardrobe, find themselves frustrated when trying to get ready to go out, thinking, “I have nothing to wear!”
Near the Sakurazaka Theater, a movie theater with a long history in Naha, is FUJISAN FACTORY STORE, a shop specializing in tailor made clothes. They cater to customers who come with a picture in their minds for a piece of clothing, and they make it all from scratch.
With Tomoko Higa as the shop’s representative, the team of five women, Kyoko-san, Kimiko-san, Satomi-san, and Mika-san, run this small shop. From the fabric, shape of the collar, length of the sleeves, the type of buttons and any other requests, big or small, they can work with you to create something special!
Tomoko-san says, “You know how people take magazine clippings and such when they go get their hair done so that the stylist has a clearer image of how to do your hair? Just like that, our customers tell us what they imagine the piece of clothing to look like, and that’s how we take orders.”
The sounds of shears cutting fabric and the rhythmical hum of the sewing machines echo throughout the small shop. As they focus on their creations, I couldn’t help but watch them through my camera lens, amazed by their skills.
Everyone that works there are all local Uchinanchu (Okinawans). They decided to open their shop in Okinawa out of their intentions to “be useful for the local people in our home island that we cherish”. Among the five, there are those who attended and graduated from special schools focusing on sewing, and also those who had no experience in the field until they started working at FUJISAN FACTORY STORE. Despite that, they all share the same thought, “for our customers to enjoy the clothes we make for a long time”. They said, “It’s unfortunate for the clothes if they’re simply discarded after little use. We hope to offer something special that you’ll enjoy no matter what the recent trends are, and something that you’ll cherish and wear for a long time.”
The original, tailor-made shirts are often made with fabric like cotton or hemp that has breathability and absorbs sweat. Tomoko-san says, “We select fabric that’s comfortable to wear, even in the hot and humid summer of Okinawa.”
The shop offers another special method of ordering clothes which is very popular with their customers. You may have a piece of clothing that you think, “It was one of my favorites, but over time, the color has faded and I can’t wear it anymore!” Bring that item to the shop and they’ll create the pattern from the original and make something exactly like it (and if you want the exact same fabric, the shop asks you to bring the fabric). If you bring fabric that’s different in color and material, you can have your favorite item in the same style but with a different expression.
How to arrange and make clothes is unlimited. You can take home an item that’s one of a kind. Tailor made shirts start from 10,000 yen and takes about a month and a half to two months to finish (prices differ according to type and design). If you’re in Okinawa only for a short time, don’t worry. They’ll ship the finished item no matter how far away you live.
If your tailor made shirts from FUJISAN FACTORY SHOP needs repairs such as a lost button or tattered collar, touchups are often done free of charge (depending on the condition of the item), and they also do resizing of clothes at a reasonable price (again, it may be done free of charge depending on the condition). By maintaining clothes in good condition, you can wear your favorite clothes for many, many years to come.
The shop also offers already made shirts, one-piece dresses, pouches made with patchwork fabric, hats, Sangwa (Okinawan talisman that the locals have long believed to cast away bad spirits), and others. Of course, they’re all original designs, handmade by the ladies of FUJISAN FACTORY STORE. The Sangwa are made with leather and Japanese Washi paper, and are popular as souvenirs.
Also popular among the many visitors to Okinawa are the hairpins and brooches designed by Bingata artist, Rie Kagawa. The brooches are charming and look lovely on bags and hats too.
“Making something requires patience and consistency. It’s kind of like climbing a mountain. There’s a very special view at the top that you can only see and enjoy after doing your best to get there. That feeling when something is complete, it feels like that sense of accomplishment when you reach the peak of the mountain.” That’s how the shop was named Fujisan, meaning Mount. Fuji.
“We make each item with great care and thought for our customers. We always encourage each other to do our best.” The ladies, when at work, are very serious and they work very hard. At the same time, though, there’s a tender and warm atmosphere in their workplace and shop. The items made at the hands of the staff here are sure to become something you’ll cherish for the rest of your life.
You can purchase the next trendy style that comes around, and after the fad ends, the items may be buried deep in your closet…or, perhaps you’ll opt to have clothes that you truly love and wear for a long, long time?
FUJISAN FACTORY STORE
Address: 3-2-33 Makishi, Naha City, Okinawa
Hours: 10:00 to 17:00
Closed: Sunday & Holidays (Irregular Saturdays)
Okinawa CLIP photo writer, Sachiko