Three Outfits to Round Off 2021 Festivities

December has flashed by in blink of an eye and the holiday season is just around the corner! For many here in Japan, the season calls for little celebrations with loved ones and friends, enjoying the romance of the illuminations around the city and big corporate functions to round off the year. For these types of occasions, our Umeda stylist Yumi, has her three outfits recommendations to inspire your style!

Elegant for Romantic Dinner Dates

Being the last month of the year calls for making the occasion grand and extra memorable, and what better way than splurging on a fine dining experience with that special someone. For a romantic date outfit at that dinner rendezvous, we are keeping it warm, elegant with a feminine class.

With a nod to warm Christmas evenings by the fireplace with its rich red tones, a Tartan Print Dress feels just right to match the romantic dinner mood. Especially in our cache-coeur design, the dress brings out a feminine bodyline with its cinched waist and flared skirt. Completed with gold accessories and a clutch, you have a sparkling and glamorous outfit that also looks great with that glass of wine in hand – champagne or red. Don’t forget a thick warm coat (and add faux fur for an extravagant touch) to cover you to and from the restaurant or while you are taking in the colorful lit backdrops of the evening.

Yumi’s Dinner Date recommendations

Chic for After-Office Hours

While it is the month for plans and festivities, it doesn’t mean we don’t have work to think about too! The all too familiar balancing act of work and get-togethers can be a hassle for many, and even more so when you have to put together an party outfit that is office-appropriate too. Because let’s face it – who wants to show up to a party in work attire or have to go back home to get changed? So for the office and the girls night out after, how about something clean, modern and fun with blue and silver?


Being a color which portrays trust and reliability, blue is a safe bet for the office and an eye-catching piece to wear every day too. Accented here in our Sapphire Lip Dress, the bold print balances bright colors with neutrals for a easy integration in and out of work. Paired with silver and a lapel jacket in white or black, it softens the print and keeps it sharp for the office environment.

For that extra ‘edge’, here Yumi wears our vegan leather Riders Jacket in white. It’s lightweight, stretchy and easy to wear out all night and machine-washable too for accidental spills!

Yumi’s Work-to-Party recommendations

Poised for Formal Functions

Dinner dates and get-togethers with friends are great, but sometimes the occasion calls for prim and proper dress and formality, such as the end-of-year corporate party or a ceremonial family gathering. During such occasion, it’s easy to go straight for black but if you want to ease up on the strict appearance and still look tidy in front of colleagues and esteemed company, then a simple solution is navy.


Evoking an air of confidence, intelligence and authority, a top-to-bottom navy ensemble is perfect for setting the tone. Opt for a jacket with elegant details such as this, with gentle ruffles to frame the face and add feminine touches yet still has you looking sharp and polished. Over an A-line Dress and you have a simple go-to style to keep you comfortable for long evenings and sorted for similar functions to come.

Yumi’s Formal Function recommendations

However you celebrate your year-end, just like our clothes, may you celebrate with elegance, style and ease!

With love from Tokyo,
kay me

Adjusting to New Pandemic Work Routines and Changing Seasons in Japan

With the warm temperatures of summer fleeting, this marks the second year of Japan’s COVID-present autumn just around the corner. Nearly a year and a half later, the effects of the pandemic on work life in Japan are still prevalent but surely recovering. In the beginning, many companies opted for strict teleworking to lessen the chances of contraction during transportation as well as in the office. Compared to the prior year however, we can observe positive changes such as the 26% full-time teleworking rate dropping to 8% (Mitsubishi Estate Co., Ltd.). This means that many people have begun to slowly transition back into their offices with the utmost caution by implementing time-adjusted work hours as well as flex work hours.

Like teleworking, time-adjusted work hours and flex hours in Japan allow people to have more control over their work schedule. Time-adjusted work hours are where employee schedules are separated so their beginning time and ending times are spaced apart to avoid overcrowding. For example, some people may begin their workday from 7:00-15:00, whereas others may begin their workday from 11:00-19:00. In both cases, the employee still follows the typical 9-to-5 workday. On the other hand, flex hours work in a similar way where the company has ‘core hours’ where all employees must be present, and the rest of the hours are scheduled freely as long as they total 40 hours per week.

With the adjusted work hours as well as the changing of seasons the question that arises is how to dress properly for in-office days that are not quite cold enough for heavyweight fibers, but not warm enough for lightweight fibers? Workwear can be tricky during the transitions of seasons, especially in autumn as the mornings and nights are exponentially colder than the daytime. With the newly implemented work style, the temperature difference can be even more extreme than before. Today, we will explore three easy ways to effortlessly transition your summer wardrobe into cozy autumn wear.

Coming back into the office, one stressor people may remember is how many of us cannot change the office thermostat settings. Often times, offices are notorious for being chilly in order to prevent computers and other electronics from overheating, especially during transitioning seasons where it is warm during the day. One way of comfortably transitioning your summer wardrobe for the fall is switching from a light underdress to something more heat-retaining to stay cozy even in a dress around the office. kay me Warm Underdresses are light and breathable, yet heat-retaining. For transitioning months, we recommend the camisole underdress, which can be worn under any of your favorite kay me dresses without worrying about the design being disrupted.

With the rise of time-adjusted work hours, many people opt to leave their house either earlier or later than the rush hour. As an incentive, railway companies such as JR have begun implementing a point system for people who commute during these ‘off-peak’ times. These collected points can be used to pay for items and services within the station malls, or exchanged online for items. For those who leave early, they are met with colder temperatures going to work and warmer weather when leaving from work. Those who leave later in the day are in the opposite situation. As a solution of being exposed to polar opposite temperatures during the workday, an option would be layering with knitted items such as cardigans and knits. Not only will this option provide extra warmth whenever needed, but the look of knit adds an instant look of coziness to any outfit! By choosing rich colors such as bordeaux and mustard, any simple dress can transform into the perfect autumn look. Try our comfortable and soft Kanazawa-knit Crewneck Cardigans available in gorgeous autumn colors such as Mustard and Gray Melange.

For those constantly on the go in and out of the office, sometimes carrying an extra layer like a cardigan or jacket may not be the most convenient. Especially when traveling on foot, the body naturally heats up and the extra layer brought for warmth just becomes a nuisance to carry. In those cases, we suggest wearing materials that can assist in regulating the body temperature for constant, optimal comfort. This dream-like material, called Outlast, has actually been developed for NASA in order to maintain a comfortable temperature even in space. This thermally adaptive material absorbs, stores, and releases heat for optimal comfort. At kay me, we have taken this technologically advanced material and have created a stunning suit collection, perfect for autumn! The Soy Milk x Pinstripe Docking Tuck Dress is a gorgeous piece that features a feminine top complete with delicate tuck detailing at the bustline and ¾ sleeves. The skirt is made from Outlast material that provides soft shape support and warmth when needed. The combination of the two creates a breathtaking ensemble-like dress which can also be paired with its matching jacket to instantly transform the outfit into a suit!

With the new normal of work life in Japan evolving constantly through COVID-19, adapting to and overcoming frequent changes has been a challenge in itself. The last thing that you want on your mind is worrying about how to stay comfortably warm or cool throughout your day as you return to the office. In retrospect, many women have taken the opportunity that teleworking and adjusted work hours have created by indulging in improving their skillsets. According to Paranavi, since the State of Emergency was announced last year, an average of 40% of women displayed an interest in improving their skills for their careers, and 32% of them have used their free time to advance their skills. This incredible statistic holds much hope for the future of women as they still face their challenges no matter what the environment is around them.

At kay me we wish to continue supporting women through these challenges by providing luxurious comfort and providing solutions to all stressors caused by clothing. All our fully machine-washable pieces are stretchy and ethically made in Japan and we offer free global shipping as standard too! Visit us here.

Attending Weddings in Japan

Like many other countries, the most popular season for weddings in Japan is right around summer time, especially after tsuyu. From traditional Shinto wedding ceremonies, western-influenced “white weddings” (where the bride wears a white dress and the groom wears a white tuxedo), to a mixture of both, Japanese weddings vary greatly in style from couple to couple, which makes for an incredibly exciting experience to attend every chance you get!

To make sure you enjoy the most out of a wedding in Japan, we look into the etiquettes, things to watch out for and how weddings during the year of COVID has shifted.

Being Invited

Japanese weddings closely follow the same format of any other wedding with speeches, exchange of rings, delicious food, and even a cake-cutting ceremony. The invitation list is more intimate than western weddings, where usually only close friends, family, and bosses and coworkers are invited. These invitations are usually only for those invited and do not include a plus-one not only to cut costs, but to also keep the invitation within the bride and groom’s supervision. The after-party of the wedding is reserved only for the newlywed’s personal guest list, rather than the formal list of the initial wedding invitation, and oftentimes take place in smaller venues such as restaurants or Japanese pubs. As these events are exclusive, it is always seen as a great honor to receive invitations as it means that the newlyweds perceive you as a close friend. But being a guest at a Japanese wedding could also bring forth a number of responsibilities that many may find stressful.

Stressors of Japanese Weddings

According to MyNavi, the top three reasons Japanese people feel the most stressed for attending weddings are giving speeches, deciding how much to give for the wedding gift, and what to wear. The largest factor being speeches, over 80% of the surveyed people answered that they felt immense pressure to have to deliver a speech that would be captivating and entertaining. The second most stressful factor, deciding an appropriate amount to spend on the wedding gift, comes in at nearly 65%. Unlike other countries, Japanese weddings do not have gift registries or even a custom of gifting objects. Instead, it is customary for wedding attendees to gift the newlyweds money. This may seem like a wonderful way to cut time on shopping for gifts or worrying that the couple would not like their gift, but as a general value is not set, it can cause stress in deciding on an amount.

According to the Zexy 2020 Trend Report, the most popular amount to gift was 30,000-40,000yen from friends and coworkers (97.7%), and 50,000-100,000yen from employers and family (47.2%, 57.6%). As these gifts can be quite expensive, this is another reason why the invitation list is kept at an intimate level to not burden those who are not as close to the newlyweds. In return, each guest is given a gift when leaving the reception. In 2020, the most popular items that were given were gift catalogues as well as small snacks such as cookies and cakes. These gifts range from 5000-6000yen per guest, and totals up to 300,000-400,000yen in fees (Zexy). Gift catalogues are a popular return or ‘thank-you’ gift in Japan where a prepaid catalogue full of items ranging from specialty foods to home appliances are handed to the recipient where they can choose the desired item they’d like to receive. By opting for gift catalogues, the guests do not have to worry about carrying heavy items back home, especially if they plan to attend the after-party, and they can also choose the best gift for themselves.

The third stressor, deciding what to wear, is a conundrum almost 63% of people face. In Japan, it is not only acceptable but it is actually preferred for wedding guests to wear darker colors such as black and navy, whereas in western customs these colors are avoided. At Japanese weddings it is best to avoid bright or bold colors and prints as it may be distracting and could potentially take attention away from the newlyweds. For women, dresses in neutral colors that provide modest coverage both to the shoulders and down to the knees is preferred, as well as close-toed shoes. Some women also opt to wear a traditional kimono as well. Despite the intimate guest list, weddings in Japan are still treated with high formality, which is best attended in appropriate formal attire. As formal clothing can be uncomfortable, especially when worn for prolonged hours like a wedding, kay me dresses are the perfect solution as the stretchy material provides day-long comfort. A recommendation that we have for weddings is our classic Navy Gather Dress, which is made from a breathable triacetate blend fabric, perfect for the hot summer months! The cut of the dress is modest, yet chic and feminine, and photographs beautifully from any angle.

Pair the dress with our 29-Pocket Wallet Bag that can be transformed as a clutch and hold all of your wedding guest essentials (including business cards!). The bag is available in an array of colors, including champagne gold, which is a perfect way to add a subtle pop of color to your celebratory outfit! Transform the bag from a clutch to a crossbody when attending the after-party to keep your essential items close to you while keeping both of your hands free.

Weddings during COVID-19

With events in the past year being heavily affected by COVID-19, weddings in Japan have slightly shifted in order for guests to safely celebrate the newlywed couple. Some of these changes are of course the implementation of masks, hand sanitizers, and maintaining social distance, but also how guests attend the wedding. According to Cross Marketing, in a demographic of women aged 30-60 only 34.8% attended weddings in person during 2020. Instead, they opted for sending letters and packages to celebrate the newlyweds, had live calls during the wedding, or attended the wedding ceremony virtually. Interestingly, in the same demographic range of men, the physical attendance rate was 54%, and a way those who chose not to attend in-person included holding a celebration event virtually hosted on a gaming platform. These innovative solutions served, and continue to serve, as a safe and convenient way for people to still attend or celebrate the wedding. Not only has this new style of wedding attendance served its purpose during these trial times, but it has also allowed family members and friends who cannot normally attend these celebrations due to health, location, or any other complications, to join the celebration with a few clicks.

Although attending a wedding alone may seem intimidating at first, it serves as a perfect opportunity to step out of your comfort zone and to network with other guests who are most likely attending by themselves as well. There may be a number of stressful factors as a wedding guest, especially when you are in unfamiliar settings, but in Japan it is custom for weddings to have a set itinerary and tight-knit schedule that is sent to the guests prior to the wedding day to avoid any confusion and to answer questions guests may have. Slip on your favorite kay me outfit to feel confident, beautiful, and comfortable all day so you can just simply focus on enjoying the wedding and celebrating the embarkation of the couple’s new life together!

Make getting ready for your next special occasion fuss-free and easy with our latest selection of machine-washable, stretchy dresses.

5 Cozy pieces for Remote Working

As working from home is becoming the new normal, figuring out what to wear to keep it professional yet comfortable has been a new topic of concern for many. So here are our 5 work from home pieces you can wear for casual and formal remote working styles.

Stay cozy and ready to be active with First Class hoodies

Whether you are off for a quick run to the grocery store or need to buckle down at the desk, or even relaxing on the sofa watching TV, a warm and cozy hoodie will keep you ready for any at-home situation.

Keep your legs covered with a Long skirt

While the webcam will only catch your upper half, it is easy to forget about your lower half. One of the top issues for career women when working from home is getting chilly legs. So keep them warm and covered in a long skirt. And you’ll never know if your lower half will need to make an on-screen appearance for a video call, so keep it light and flash a bright print long skirt to the camera.

Slip on a natural Long dress and you are set

For a casual work-from-home outfit you can complete in one-two-three, simply slip on a long dress and you can focus on your work and errands. And with a feminine print it looks great for online video calls too.

Add a chic touch with a Relaxed material

You can relax and be video-conference ready with the right material and design. Go for materials that feel soft on the skin like a cushiony-soft jersey or a fleeced lining for extra warmth. For material that wicks away moisture and keeps you cool, choose 100% cotton jersey. Combined with a simple design with a relaxed silhouette, you can stay truly comfortable and mobile and still look presentable for online meetings.

A Knit outer brings out the best of both worlds

When you want to maintain a true professional style from home, then look no further than a (machine-washable) knit cardigan or suit jacket that will keep you looking sharp and focused without compromising your comfort. And for true work-at-home advantage, you can easily take it for a spin in the washing machine and have it ready for another day!

To read more about the top concerns women have when working from home or to see more work-from-home styles, take a look at our recent survey results here