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Q: Woman's Intimate Apparel in Japan ( Answered 4 out of 5 stars,   2 Comments )
Subject: Woman's Intimate Apparel in Japan
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: stanatglamorise-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 05 Jun 2003 08:22 PDT
Expires: 05 Jul 2003 08:22 PDT
Question ID: 213397
I am trying to identify mail order catalogs who sell woman's initimate
(Bras, Shapewear)apparel in Japan. I have been approached by Peach
John who does sell intimate apparel by mail order catalog.  But I am
trying to find out who else does.
Please supply:
names of catalogs
Web sites
Subject: Re: Woman's Intimate Apparel in Japan
Answered By: angy-ga on 06 Jun 2003 02:39 PDT
Rated:4 out of 5 stars
Hi, stanatglamorise-ga !

Of course, Western style underwear is relatively new to Japan. An
article on the move to the wearing of Western style lingerie in Japan
by Kaori Shoji can be found at the IHT site at:

This tells us that:

"Japanese women only started wearing Western-style underclothes about
70 years ago. Until then, they wrapped themselves in layers of kimonos
and let that suffice. .This all began to change as the result of a
department store fire in 1932 in which 14 young women were killed. The
women, dressed in kimonos, had escaped to the store's roof. When they
tried to climb down a makeshift ladder, they could only use one of
their hands since the other was needed to keep their kimonos from
flapping in the wind and exposing their lower extremities. Thus
handicapped, they lost their balance and fell to their deaths. .Today,
lingerie is considered the chicest of all clothing, simply because
it's concealed."

The article goes on to discuss Peach John's and their immediate rivals
Amo's Style and The Kid Blue.

Amo's Style, a division of Triumph, has its catalogue online at:

You will need to download the support for Japanese characters to your
computer if you want to view the pages properly, and reading Japanese
would certainly help.

Kid Blue's current catalogue - the Bounee High collection - is
accessible online through:

The site uses Flash. The models are distinctly less childlike, and the
text has good English. Click on "inner wear" for "underwear". The
garments are stylish. Click on them for more detail.

I am unclear whether it is possible to shop online, or whether you
would need to contact your nearest shop. Shop addresses and phone
numbers are listed on the site.

Another company which include items of lingerie in its general
merchandise mail order catalogues is Nissen Co., Ltd. -  79,
Nishinochaya-Cho, Kisshoin Minami-Ku, Kyoto 601-8381 601-8381 JAPAN
	+81 75 682 2000 +81 75 682 7241 . Their website, where their current
catalogue is online, is at: profiles them at:,_ltd/profile/
They write:

"Nissen Co., Ltd.. Involved in the mail-order retail sales business
and has grown into the third largest company in its market in Japan.
The company handles a broad range of merchandise including clothing,
consumer electronics, formal wear and jewelry. Its direct sales
division operates a store-independent direct sales organization
designed to allow the consumer to view the merchandise before buying.
The division has developed a network of over a hundred centers across
Japan. Nissen also provides credit services and insurance. Mail-order
sales, credit service and insurance accounted for 83% of 2000
revenues; direct sales of Japanese kimonos and other luxury goods,
17%. The company has eight consolidated subsidiaries one each in Japan
and Hong Kong. Overseas sales were less than 10% of 2000 revenues."

In the catalogue click on "Inner Collection" to find lingerie. Click
on pictures to find more details. It would help to be able to read
Japanese, but you can find your way round the site without. Brands
seem to include  Triumph again.

Similar is CECILE CO., LTD. Profile at:,_ltd/profile/

	"CECILE CO., LTD. - 10-20,
Taga-cho 2-Chome Takamatsu 760-0063, Kagawa 760-0063 JAPAN 	+81 87 862
6325 +81 87 835 4432
	Cecile Co., Ltd.. Provides catalog mail-order services. Handling
clothing and household goods. Outerwear accounted for 30% of 2000
revenues; household goods, 28%; lingerie, 25%; fashion goods, 7%;
knitted hosiery, 7% and other service, 3%."

Their site is at:

Scroll down, and you will find a picture of the printed catalogue. 

An NEC IT case study of Cecile is at: 

It describes the addition of on-line shopping to the existing mail
order catalogue, and how it was implemented:

"Cecile Co., Ltd. one of Japan's largest catalog mail-order shopping
companies, operates the "Cecile Net Club (CNC)" targeting E-commerce
site users, and has attracted 630,000 members. It has implemented a
mail distribution system that enables rapid distribution of large
volumes of mail to facilitate distribution of a mail magazine for CNC
members. ......

Four times each year, Cecile sends out catalogs through extensive
direct mail operations. Shimoda compares the features of mail order
catalogs and the mail magazine targeting CNC members.
'In the case of catalog distribution, there is generally a peak in
purchasing one or two weeks after the customers receive the catalogs.
The purchasing peak in the case of the mail magazine appears within
three days of distribution. This response speed means that we can
accurately recognize the best-selling products, which represents a
very important function for us; by utilizing E-mail, we can use this
information in test marketing activities.' ......

For many customers, the arrival of Cecile's catalog is a very real
reminder of the arrival of a new season. And many customers order
products via the Internet after selecting the desired item from the
traditional catalog. Shimoda talks about the integration of catalogs
and IT.

'For the past two years, we have been studying broadband web sites and
E-mail operation methods, keeping a close eye on the developments in
broadband infrastructures. Even so, we feel that catalogs will be an
essential element of our business in the future as well. Our customers
look forward to being able to relax and look through our catalogs at
their leisure. '"

Finally Maple Drive are happy to ship to Japan.:

They specialise in lingerie, and their range is very extensive,
glamour oriented and includes wigs and body shapers. There is an
approximate currency converter on the check-out pages, and their
shipping charge worldwide is extremely reasonable.

Thank you for an interesting question.

Search terms:

lingerie mail order Japan
catalogue lingerie Japan
catalog lingerie Japan
Amo's Style
The Kid Blue
stanatglamorise-ga rated this answer:4 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $10.00

Subject: Re: Woman's Intimate Apparel in Japan
From: saabster-ga on 05 Jun 2003 09:12 PDT
while I don't know this to be true, there may be a cultural difference
in that it may be seen to be inappropriate to purchase intimate items
like lingerie via a catalogue in Japan. It might make sense to check
Victoria's Secret's catalogue to see if they accept orders
internationally and use them as your demonstration model. It also
seems likely that an established business with the financial
wherewithal would most likely seek out a new market (if Japan is seen
as a relatively new market with high potential)
Subject: Re: Woman's Intimate Apparel in Japan
From: royzemi-ga on 13 Jan 2004 00:24 PST
I've been in Japan for close to 20 years and specialize in retailing
here. Most women buy underwear through catalogs because a) there are
relatively few stores specializing in these items, b) it is less
embarassing for them. Some companies, for example Knickerbox and Etam
have both attempted the market, but had problems. Marks & Spencer also
tried here. One of the biggest issues is sizing -- the majority of
Japanese require much smaller sizes than usual in the West. Victoria
Secret, for example, would have to completely re-think sizing and
styling to make a go of Japan.

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