The Blerdcon Experience with DC Kawaii Style

Alternative fashion at Blerdcon was welcomed and inspiring both to the community and those looking to explore it. Check out the event recap of all things DC Kawaii Style at Blerdcon 2019

DC Kawaii Style really popped off this year at Blerdcon. From hosting the con’s first ever JFashion show to comm members taking the stage with panels of expertise!

If you didn’t get the chance to experience it, this recap is perfect for your visual needs.

At this point,  we’d like to throw our name in the hat as the community to continue to bring Jfashion and kawaii lifestyle to Blerdcon –

We can attest! Having alternative fashion there was welcomed and inspiring to both the active community and those looking to explore.

Community Panels

We had so many members come out and share their knowledge this year. With a total of 6 community member run panels it goes to show we have a lot to talk about inside and outside of Jfashion.

Here is a list of the panels run by our community members.

Killer Show + Shinobi Cosplay doing a thing ^.^

Do It for The Culture: Intro to Afro Kawaii

How to Survive as a Plus Sized Lolita

Why Am I Crash Bandicoot Orange?? Troubleshooting Make-up for J-Fashion While Black

So Goth We Were Born Black [18+]

Black Femmes & Creative Writing

Ask a Black Female Tattoo Artist

FIRST Jfashion Show EVER at Blerdcon 2019

Saturday Evening, we conquered the stage and the kawaii way reached the next level!

A full house of Blerdcon attendees got to experience the delightful fashion from the brands: Kawaii Carnival, A Gato Designs, Un-Re Designs, and Noble Ghost

As well as individual personal kawaii styles including dolly kei, hime gothic lolita, gyaru-o, amekaji, pastel goth, kawaii kink, aomoji and yami kawaii. All of this on one stage, can you imagine?

It was fun and love how collective the Jfashion team (Sweet Bitz, ipukekawaii, Weloveteetee) worked to keep everything together and giving direction as needed.

And our dynamic MC, Cola is a kawaii treat in person and truly an icon.

pastel + goth love

Later was a Q&A for models and brands. And our community wass outstanding in providing authentic spaces to interact with Jfashion styles firsthand.

Uplifting on many levels, nothing is more beautiful than seeing the culture of kawaii spread like this. Therefore even for everyone’s first, we’re happy to say the fashion show was a success.

Casual Meet at Blerdcon

After a full weekend, we had such an excellent turnout for a casual meet in the lobby. The goths were being goths living their best Adams Family life. While pastel cuties sparkled.

This intimate space was a good casual meet bringing kawaii lovers together for the chance to make new friends, see old ones, and decompress from a wild weekend.

Blerdcon 2019 was a kawaii success and we can’t wait to see what adventures happen next year!

Til next post!

Keep it kawaii ^.^

My Kawaii Personal Style Fashion Contest

Deposit hearts for Jaded Island and Kuma in Kawaii International’s ‘My Kawaii Personal Style’ fashion contest! ♡ ♡ ♡

Hi everyone!
Our kawaii family, Jaded Island and Kuma entered
Kawaii International’s ‘My Kawaii Personal Style’ fashion contest!

And you know what this means ~

We want to show our support!

So do us a solid between now to July 10 and stop by to deposit some hearts on their looks ^.^

Kawaii International Fashion Contest

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The goal of Kawaii International is to examine and share the past, present, and future of the Kawaii aesthetic with the world. Beginning as a small subculture in Japan, Kawaii has become a significant and influential part of Japanese culture and a global phenomenon. Kawaii culture knows no boundaries of race, religion, age, or gender. It embraces individuality and values diversity. We’re looking for someone who understands, loves, and lives the message of Kawaii culture: the next Kawaii Leader.


We made it SUPER easy for you to deposit some hearts daily for Jade & Kuma.

Just click their image!

And we left some nuggets in case you’re new to JFashion and wondering about their personal kawaii styles. ^.^


Jade’s Kawaii Kei

Shaping her own style, Jade serves in a ‘foxy’ story teller kei riddled with pink energy ~

She’s a walking and ever-changing OC (original character) bringing her fiction & fantasy words to life.

Kuma‘s Gyaru (Gal) Swag

Kuma kills it in Gyaru. But is definitely one of the area’s leader in manba and yomamba styles.

And loves to educate people on the history of the fashion and it’s importance along the way.


Still here?


And don’t forget to bookmark the page so you can show some love DAILY until July 10 for who we consider two of the DC’s area’s local kawaii leaders <3

Thank you, always for your support!

Harajuku Fashion Walks, History + Showcase of Japanese Street Fashion in DC

Let’s take a journey to where it all begins, the best showcase of Japanese street fashion. Here’s the History of Harajuku Walks

If you have ever wondered why all these people start walking around dressed so vibrantly, cute, and freely, this is the post to learn about one of the most important events with J-fashion communities ~

Stop your day right now, and let’s have our first Kawaii Way lesson in Jfashion history.

Imani poses at Moshi Moshi Nippon clock by artist and sensational kawaii fashion icon, Sebastian Masuda

The History of Harajuku Fashion Walks

The first thing you need to know about Harajuku walks is its origin!

Jfashion, the common name for “Japanese Street Fashion” sprung out of youth in Japan and is what refers to a collective of different styles and trends that can be found during Harajuku walks.

These walks occur in the Harajuku district in Tokyo.

And the street, Omotesando (O-mo-teh-san-do) is the blossoming origin of these popular walks ~

When the athletes came to Japan in 1964, the street was overwhelmed with people trying to see the athletes who stayed in a hotel at the time. Later the street renewed its popularity when the LaForet Fashion Mall opened up in 1978.

The street further inspired fame when in the 1980s folks in the band scene and visual kei encouraged the space as a spot to hang out and meet up.

Going to a Walk

If you are blessed and highly favored, you might have the chance to join a Harajuku walk in Tokyo, they usually happen once a month. If not, then come out and start participating in Harajuku walks with local communities like DC Kawaii Style. Harajuku fashion has inspired fashion everywhere in the world. So much so, that often during these Harajuku walks in Tokyo, you’ll find a healthy mix of foreign Jfashion enthusiasts and lifestylers participating. Harajuku walks are the perfect space show off your outfits and socialize with like-minded people.

What to Know When You Join a Harajuku Walk:

Your Harajuku style is produced from you ~

Your mind is the driving force for this vibrant style, and it can be limitless.

The purpose of Harajuku Walks is to provide a space for freedom of expression. That space is for anyone who feels they are an artist, independent spirit, or just loves fashion trends. This style is retaliating against social norms for jobs, clothing, and attitude.

Some of the popular jfashion styles (which is not to be confused for cosplay) you’ll see during a Harajuku walk are:
• Visual Kei
• Gyaru
• Kogal/Ko-gyaru
• Ganguro
• Goth Lolita
• Sweet Lolita
• Decora
• Cyber-Punk
• Mori-Girl

There are so many styles, and often new ones are created on that historical street. And welcomes your personal style.

Fashionably it is an honor to walk down that historical street, but if you want to start closer to home that’s okay too!

If you have experience with Harajuku walks that you want to share, leave a comment on this post! We will be sharing more on the style, culture, and even J-fashion tips on The Kawaii Way.

While indulging in J-Fashion and kawaii lifetsyle, knowing the history of the movement is an empowering piece. Because the more you know, the more confident you become.

And confidence is the best feel for infectious Kawaii Empowerment.

Dig Deeper

Want some good reading on Harajuku Fashion Walks?!

Be sure to check out these reads  ~

Mookychick | “History of Harajuku Fashion

Japan Info | “Harajuku Fashion Walk: a Must-See for Fashion Lovers

Check out our past Harajuku Fashion Walk photo galleries.

photo from Moshi Moshi Nippon

D.C. Kawaii Style Harajuku Fashion Walks

We got you covered with a more accessible experience ~

D.C. Kawaii Style celebrates Harajuku by gathering for our largest event – Harajuku (in DC) Fashion Walk DC –  twice per year.

Ambiance and aesthetic are driving forces for kawaii culture – from coords to events. #AestheticsMATTER !!!



p style=”text-align: center;”>So our walks seek to create a nostalgic aesthetic.

AND a way to commune IRL, meeting new friends, trading tips & tricks for your coord game and taking all the coord snaps, together ~


Inspired and ever so grateful to the original Harajuku Fashion Walk, welcome to the tradition that is DC Kawaii Style’s 🌸HARAJUKU (in DC) FASHION WALK🌸

Grab your best coord, a picnic basket of goodies, some games and let’s enjoy the day together !✨

All events are easily accessible at DC KAWAII STYLE. COM

Enjoy our content?

Make a kind donation to our community’s mission + programming growth! We got GOALS mama! <3

Maeykoh Menhera for ACDC RAG

This kawaii friends announcement is in support of @maeykohmenhera’s #acdcragdesigncontest entry


p style=”text-align: center;”>Hi everyone!

Maeykoh (comm member & Menhera artist) entered the ACDC Rag T-shirt contest!

We’re HUGE on talking mental health within the community and supporting each other’s journeys. An added bonus is that one of our fav styles collectively is yami kawaii. But you can’t indulge without looking at and talking Menhera.
That’s a topic for another post soon ~

BUT for now you can support this conversation by voting for our community Menhera artist’s competition design for Harajuku style brand, ACDC RAG.

Please stop by and show some love 💖✨

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#repost @maeykohmenhera ・・・ Here is my entry for the #acdcragdesigncontest This design is based on my own thoughts on medication and dark thoughts. The back of the shirt reads “I want to die” while the front says “medicine.” Sometimes the pills work and sometimes they just push the thoughts to the back of the mind and hide them. . . . I had a lot of fun making this design and I hope you all like it as much as I do. . . . #acdcragdesigncontest @acdcragdesigncontest #menhera #menherafashion #menheradesign #tshirtdesign #shirtdesign #harajukustyle

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A Kawaii Friends Give-a-Way

This kawaii friends give-a-way is in support of Art Pastel Kelsey’s Poke J-Fashion Trainers Kickstarter

Three cheers for our first ✨EXCLUSIVE Kawaii Friends Give-a-Way✨

We’re SO EXCITED to share this give-a-way collaboration between
Quirk ConArt Pastel Kelsey x DC Kawaii Style

This kawaii way fun is in support of Art Pastel Kelsey‘s awesome J-Fashion campaign ~

About the Project: This project is to fund my Series of Pokemon themed Lolita fashion Enamel Pins. This project has been in the works since early 2019 and I am pleased to announce it to the world. I love pokemon, it is one of my most beloved game series and I have been in the Lolita fashion community since 2014. Pokemon and Lolita are two interests that hold a special place in my heart so naturally they were going to combine in some way. This project is the result of my love and creativity and I hope you will enjoy my artwork.

ENTER RAFFLE HEREa Rafflecopter giveaway

☝️Share on Instagram with a caption telling us your favorite Poke J-Fashion trainer.
Don’t forget to follow/ tag @quirkcon + @artpastelkelsey + @dckawaiistyle


Who are the Friends?! 

 Quirk ConArt Pastel Kelsey x DC Kawaii Style

What Do I Get?! ♡

2 FREE tickets to Quirkcon 2019 + Afro Kawaii Zine (features art by Art Pastel Kelsey)

♡  How Do I Enter?! ♡

1. Make a Poke-Lover pledge $1 or $5

2. Share the photo + caption (in blog post) via Instagram

3. Follow + tag the post to @quirkcon + @artpastelkelsey + @dckawaiistyle

✨ENTER HERE✨ >>> Rafflecopter giveaway

When Will I Know?! ♡

winner will be chosen by Art Pastel Kelsey
and will be announced on our Instagram, 5/17 (FriYAY)



p style=”text-align: center;”>*EVERYONE who pledges as a Poke-Lover will receive a thank you image by the artist
** $5 partons will receive surprise exclusive items + artwork

A Word from Imani K Brown

DC Kawaii Style™ is a growing community with members from varying backgrounds that engage respectfully with others while learning and exploring Japanese Culture.

Kawaii Empowerment from the Founder of DC Kawaii Style:

DC Kawaii Style™ is a growing community with members from varying backgrounds who engage respectfully with others while learning and exploring Japanese Culture.

The community brings Kawaii to the immediate DC area but connects people from around the globe with the culture of cute. This community encourages finding ways to bring your heritage and background and mixing it with Kawaii. I am an artist who explores my heritage while understanding the cultures of others.


The importance of accepting oneself has grown into an empowering career and way of life. I strongly encourage that others in the communities I interact with and those I don’t to engage with other cultures respectfully and in a way that doesn’t hurt anyone. My experience as a black Tattoo Artist and entrepreneur have seen so much growth. Each piece of my past comes into play as I build not only my Community, DC Kawaii Style™, but my career. The choices of my past, for my brand and the way I engaged with my heritage still exist in some spaces that might alarm those who have only seen the person that I am now.


I don’t dismiss my past. Instead, I ask, that you engage with it to understand the importance of Afro Kawaii in art, community, and style. From there you will see how I have used Afro Kawaii and tattoo therapy to build both  the Community and my own self-esteem. I share publicly today. Rest assured that my past is but a piece of the colorful impact I have had in my lifetime and a stepping stone into the vision I have for DC Kawaii Style™.


I will address any issues with open arms and a guide informing people about DC Kawaii Style™ so that the communities outside of this one can learn more about heritage, culture, and empowerment through kawaii.

– Imani K Brown / ipukekawaii

[MODEL CALL] J-Fashion Show @ Blerdcon

We are seeking INDIVIDUALS +
BRANDS – who want to share their kawaii looks & apparel. ALL Japanese street fashion styles welcome ~


We’re working really hard to bring a J-fashion track to Blerdcon with the help of friends
Sweet Bitz Apparel and Kawaii MUA Tee Tee


Kawaii Models + Brands Wanted!

We are seeking
♡ INDIVIDUALS – who want to share their personal kawaii look and
♡ BRANDS – who want to share their kawaii apparel

ALL Japanese street fashion styles welcome!

Welcome to The Kawaii Way Kick Off!

The Kawaii Way is both a fundraising campaign + educational space organized by DC Kawaii Style™ for kawaii culture enthusiasts.

“Everyone has the opportunity to make a better life, but not everyone knows how to. For those who happen to know, help those who don’t.”

Welcome to The Kawaii Way, by DC Kawaii Style™

Welcome to DC Kawaii Style‘s cute blog space – created to share our conversations and creative lifestyle of kawaii lovers that help shape the cult of cute’s philosophy. We call it The Kawaii Way!

We’re excited to unveil our long-awaited educational space in this digital world.

We focus quartly on topics such as

Here we’ll take extensive looks at cute culture history

and for the J-fashion lover in you, we will introduce and discuss styles & trends as well as explore how to define YOUR own kawaii.

We’ll also introduce other cute creatives in the stratosphere  – from bloggers to brands …

all while sharing our lofty dreams of more kawaii in DC.

The best part is that we’ll be able to learn TOGETHER!

With so much to share, we hope this platform becomes an excellent resource to learn about Kawaii – the cult of cute / how it builds bridges between cultures / and helps with metal health.

The Kick Off

To kick off this new space, we welcome you to share your own kawaii style!

We are excited to collaborate and partner with fellow cute culture lovers in our local communities and online spaces.

Before we leave you ~

we invite you to grab some debut FREEBIES!

It’s our little way to welcome you no matter how near or far, with open arms.

We hope you’ll come to express yourself and take an active part in sharing The Kawaii Way.

— DC Kawaii Style Family


  • DC Kawaii Style kawaii community swap meet
            DC Kawaii Style kawaii community sakura matsuri DC Kawaii Style kawaii community


[About The Kawaii Way]: The Kawaii Way is both a fundraising campaign + educational space organized by DC Kawaii Style™ for kawaii culture enthusiasts. It aims to gather resources that would help the organization materialize proposed organizational goals and events that promote and empower individuals through the kawaii way of life. In line with our mission of promoting kawaii culture as a way of life, The Kawaii Way serves as a tool in making kawaii possible through fundraising projects and workshops. Help us put the “fun” in fundraising to make kawaii happen, together!

More Kawaii in DC: Japan’s Cult of Cute Comes to the Nation’s Capital

Let’s take a journey to where it all begins ~

Hi yah! I’m Imani K Brown – community founder and active member, coming to take you on a journey of where it all begins for DC Kawaii Style™ and how we’ve made it to this journey of non-profit status.

Happy Wednesday and welcome to

We can’t wait to share more in kawaii with you – from street fashion to art and community. We’ll have you covered with more ways to interact with us even if you aren’t in DC ^.^

YOKOSO! (welcome ^.^)

Break out the tea & cookies and put on your cutest kigu. Time to curl up for a story of bringing more kawaii to Washington, DC.

{ 2014, A Start to Kawaii in DC }

With DC Metro Lolitas

DC Kawaii Style x DC Metro Lolita Kawaii Community

It’s hard to think DC Metro Lolitas – formed with the help of fellow lolita Cassie, the support of Charm City lolita community & the work of a few close friends – is already five years old and it is still growing beyond belief. *bless my frills*

Metro Lolitas was formed in 2013 and partnered with Geek Girl Brunch, DC Chapter to bring together DC’s first ever Harajuku Fashion Walk ^.^

Since lolita communities can be cut throat and leave negative effects on people who just want enjoy exploring the fashion, the inspiration for growing Metro is based on the sentiment that we all have to start somewhere.


From that, friends and I had dreams of an overall kawaii community (not just specific to Lolita) where people could talk J-fashion, share kawaii events, and make friends with similar interests all around the city. As a kawaii girl from the hood, I also wanted to find ways to touch the Black community with J-fashion and kawaii culture. (hi Afro Kawaii, we’ll talk more about that soon!)

So we got to work!

With Outreach Workshop Opportunities Happen

kawaii in da hood

In 2014, I was given the opportunity to teach an arts and crafts class, specifically to at-risk youth, at Randall Community Center.

And decided to use the opportunity to see how youth felt about learning kawaii culture through art, crafts and D.I.Y.

To my surprise, it was a MAJOR success!

kawaii in da hood

DC artist, Alicia Cosnahan (also known as Decoy) visited and brought some of her girls for a joint session (or a few hehe) and anime artist Niko visited to help the girls design their own fabric and talk kawaii.

Kawaii in da Hood Was Born

DC Kawaii Style x Kawaii in da Hood

Later came the idea, #KAWAIIindaHood (Kawaii In Da Hood), where we focus on teaching D.I.Y. to inner city youth. The goal of this is to give inner city (what most label at-risk youth) a chance to create and understand that they can transcend their circumstances, through cute culture-related hobbies.

Once labeled at-risk, I want to be able to use my life (upbringing, circumstances, gifts, and my trade) as an example to help youth who are negatively labeled understand that they are greater than their labels, circumstances and stereotypes.

kawaii domo

With our first organizational opportunity at E.L. Haynes for their Wellness Day, I found a cute DOMO-kun DIY perfect as a start. In my head, the NHK mascot was the perfect bridge. There’s more on the D.I.Y. day here.

Also, I was so pleased to know that all students voted our class the best for Wellness Day 2014. *so honored you guise*

Can you believe so many kawaii creative ideas have come along since creating a lolita community?!

Welp. 🤷🏾‍♀️ Please keep reading <3

{ 2015, Serious Steps to A Kawaii DC }

Starts with Kawaii Tattoos + Kawaii Art for Community Efforts

This would be the year I started taking my kawaii aesthetic seriously.

Not only was I exploring Japanese street fashion but also my mental health and tattoo therapy. And doing way more kawaii tattoos.

kawaii tattoos imani k brown

I became transparent of my hobbies, kawaii culture, and how I define MY kawaii.  And the more I was open, the more my dreams to build a kawaii space + grow a community took hold.

Also I knew this journey will take money, so I budgeted a portion of my income from tattoo and started selling my own art to fund the community until we can do better, collectively.


Imani’s dreams be like:

I want to explore kawaii fashion and art, art therapy, and how all these things make me feel. Can they make me better? Are there others out there like me?

What about a kawaii art gallery. I would also like a private tattoo studio.

And I REALLY want to support my kawaii friends and their creative dreams.

Ohhhh what if we had a space. Like a clubhouse?

How do we even promote kawaii in DC? >.<


But as the good saying goes, ain’t nothin’ to it but to do it.

So we did! ^.^

The Birth of DC Kawaii Style™

dc kawaii style

Thinking on all of these feels and talking to DC Metro comm members we thought maybe a public community and platform would be fun. Plus #KAWAIIindaHood is seasonal. So, here it is – we created DC KawaiiStyle™.

※A community that seeks to introduce & promote the philosophy of kawaii (cute) culture as a fun, happy, & positive lifestyle alternative.

  • Our First Convention

imani k brown

After meets & events like Big Bus TourInternational Lolita Day Brunch x Fashion WalkMagical Girl Brunch, we thought to keep the ball rolling as best we could.

Having always wanted to do conventions, we applied to Waku Waku +NYC – the first J-pop culture convention for the East Coast. And for us, it was a great time to start learning convention circuits and intertwining those goals.

Everything was great and now to make sure the community is alive and well in DC (of all places haha)

  • Our Inaugural Tea Party

kawaii tea party

Ain’t no tea party like a DC Kawaii Style Tea Party ~

People from communities all over came to kick it, kawaii style!

Our sweet treats and hemp tea were the best things poppin! Everyone’s co-ords were on fleck and there were a lot of smiles.

It felt like a sunny day in Harajuku, I swear!

The day’s feelings definitely made me want to push harder to make this feeling happen always, in DC.

  • Continuing Creative Community  Outreach

Outreach never fell by the wayside because we were communing <3

There were plenty more opportunities in tow, which included  more wellness at E.L. Haynes and Be Beautiful Foundation.

  • International Sister Communitities and Support

I didn’t know DC Kawaii Style had a cheer squad and gained a TON of support from friends local and abroad, thanks to my good friend and kawaii sis Rainbowholic.

We officially became affiliated with Kawaii Philippines.

And thinking so much of our efforts, they included a listing of us in their Kawaii PH book, Beyond the Cutest Dreams. (file this under a million things I would have NEVER imagined)

DC KawaiiStyle: KAWAII Affiliations copy

{ 2019, Sharing the Kawaii Way }

DC Kawaii Style has had tremendous success in growing with recent milestones like becoming an award winning community.

And we’re all very excited to share The Kawaii Way with you!


Download the DC Kawaii Style Press Kit

to learn more about the community, accomplishments, our embedded niche communities and all that we as an organization has to offer.


p style=”text-align: center;”>Maybe there are cool ways we can share in the kawaii way, TOGETHER!