Eri Wakiyama opens the door for our photo shoot, clad in last night’s makeup, messy mermaid hair and an oversized, shapeless dress. “I forgot you guys were coming,” she says as she fans herself in the 90-degree heat and humidity. Heat and all, she still gives off a look of effortless coolness. The 24-year-old Comme des Garcons employee evokes a look befitting of her name—an air of edge mixed with an airy Eri.
When did you first start getting into fashion?
Really into fashion, maybe middle school, but I knew I was into fashion in second grade because I demanded to get a perm. I was like 6 or 7 years old and I got ear piercings at that age too.
How do you get your mermaid hair?
I don’t own a comb and it’s permed. The trick is to not use a comb. Keep it all natural.
Designer to live in for the rest of your life?
Comme des Garcons.
What styles are you into now?
I don’t know what I’m into now because every day changes for me. Whatever I’m feeling. But I always feel like my designs specifically gear towards punkish and romantic. So it would always be something that relates to that.
The Fahionable Bystander: Eri Wakiyama
Eri the mermaid swims in Comme des Garcons and World Cup inspired couture.
How do you choose to wear something when you wake up in the morning?
Right now the weather, since it’s super hot. The mood. I really don’t think about it the night before it’s just whatever comes.
Where do you get most of your clothes?
Right now since I’m working at the store most of my clothes come from there. I try to find vintage pieces from Comme des Garcons because the company has been running for almost 40 years now. I collect t-shirts. Ebay, vintage stores.
A mixture of Sid Vicious and Marie Anntoinette. If they fused together and they had a baby. That’d be my ideal little character. I also feel a spiritual connection to Yoko. We were born on the same day. That’s where this hair comes from. I want a John. I’m a lonely Yoko.
What period would you time travel to for the style?
The end of the revolution. The 60’s. The whole hippie movement. I’m interested in that period of time. I’m not really into the bohemian style but I’m really into the attitude.
Describe your style in one word.
It would just be Eri.