Girl Gaze Tokyo - Ivy - Text and Photography by Chenshi Pu for YEOJA Mag


Gurl Gaze Tokyo

Moving away from her hometown and to Japan in order to pursue her dream of working in the fashion industry, Ivy shares the transformation that occurred to her after she came to Japan.

Please introduce yourself.
My name is Ivy and I am from Malaysia. I have been a pattern-making freelancer for ten years.

Why did you decide to come to Japan?
Because I wanted to live in Japan, so it would be dream come true if I could marry a Japanese man.

How did living in Japan change you?
Instead of “I was changed because of it,” I’d rather think it is the Japanese culture and environment that is ideal for my personality. I think the foreign students that I had encountered here have remolded my perspective and aesthetics.

How is your experience of working in Japan as female?
“Pawahara” (the Japanese phrase for power-harassment) that has appeared within Japanese soap dramas does happen in real life, but I am glad that I am not some faint-hearted, inexperienced foreigner that can be bullied easily at my workplace, so I was not treated with unjust attitude. Luckily, to finish my duty on time is the principle I follow at work, so other people could not find any defect from my work and use it against me. Overall, it is pretty chill.

How has your style transformed over the years in Japan? Under what influence did that transformation occur?
You may not believe it, but I was into gyaru fashion long time ago. Later on, I started to get into the business of purchasing clothing items from orders of people whom do not have access to the stores, and as a result, I gradually got familiar with streetwear. I think my style now is definitely diverse; mainly I mix and match different items to complete my entire look. My business partner, aka my roommate, has been the major influence in terms of this style – to mix and match.

Girl Gaze Tokyo - Ivy - Text and Photography by Chenshi Pu for YEOJA Mag
Photography: Chenshi Pu

Does one’s outfit indicate the person’s personality?
Perhaps the outfit represents the person’s feelings at the moment instead of their personality. My outfit depends on the person I am going to meet later and the impression I want to give to that person, thus my personality will also adjust to my outfit; there is a mutual relationship between the two.

If so, what does your daily outfit say about you?
It says a lot about my current stage in my life and my mindset right now.

Girl Gaze Tokyo - Ivy - Text and Photography by Chenshi Pu for YEOJA Mag
Photography: Chenshi Pu

Do you think people nowadays tend to dress up for self-expression or solely to impress other people?
Depends. After all, maybe people themselves cannot really explain their purpose of dressing a certain way either. There aren’t many things that are definite and absolute, therefore I can’t really answer this question either.

Is there any style you want to try but are somewhat afraid to try out?
Recently, I have started to grow a thing for a sophisticated style of fashion.

Photography: Chenshi Pu

What specific style do you think will never go out of style?
Staying true to yourself.



Original photography by Pu for YEOJA Mag. Check out Ivy on Instagram. For more Gurl Gaze Tokyo, click here. For all Gurl Gaze articles, click here.