Every month, Metropolis talks with a Tokyo resident about their cultural agenda. Suguru Ishibashi, owner of Shimokitazawa’s hip MUD vintage clothing store, tells us about what he loves about the city.
Tell us about yourself.
I used to work for a vintage shop in Harajuku for nearly a decade and am now running my own vintage shop MUD in Shimokitazawa, which I hope to be a cultural hub for those who love fashion and music.
Tell us about your own shop.
Every item is carefully chosen by myself. All of the clothes are sort of my collection. Plus I can explain why these are great products because I’m proud of each of them.
What are you passionate about?
Doing what I love in my own way. My shop is not just a vintage shop. I don’t want it to be one of those vintage shops in Tokyo. Music culture is as important as vintage culture for me.
You stand in your own shop seven days a week. What drives you to do that?
It’s probably my love of fashion. I always think about fashion and sometimes even my wife tells me I’m a bit too much. (Laughs) Also, every day a lot of new people come to visit my store. I don’t want to miss those people. I love meeting new people and the inspiration I get from them.
What do you like and dislike about Tokyo?
How Tokyo informs people from outside of Tokyo. There are a lot of intriguing people in this city.
What’s your favorite area of Tokyo and why?
Definitely Shimokitazawa. I used to live in Shimokitazawa when I moved to Tokyo. It feels like Shimokitazawa is the only local town in the center of Tokyo, and it has diversity. It’s a very special place for me.
Any differences between Harajuku and Shimokitazawa?
Yes, there are. Shimokitazawa is a very young city in terms of people and it feels like fashion/vintage culture hasn’t fully grown up yet.
What is your ultimate goal as a store owner?
I hope people come to my store not only to shop but to meet people. I like meeting cool people and everyone’s welcome, whether you’re a fashion maniac or music freak. Also, I want young people to wear more vintage clothes.
What song comes to mind when you think of Tokyo?
Quruli’s “Tokyo” for sure. I used to listen to it a lot when I moved to Tokyo.
What’s the best thing about working in a vintage shop?
Being able to see artists. I was so excited when Vampire Weekend and The Drums came to my store in Harajuku.
Best bookstore and vintage shop?
I like photo books so any bookstore that has them really. Also Disk Union and Tower Records are essential places for me to dig out new music. Shimokitazawa’s Film is one of my favorite vintage shops in Tokyo. I always find myself going there when I’m walking around Shimokitazawa.
12pm – 9pm (Mon – Sun)
2-33-2 Kitazawa, Setagaya-ku