Walk into any supermarket or inexpensive restaurant in Japan, and you’re sure to notice the racks of free, pennysaver-like magazines for visitors to take. They really come in handy when you’re looking for new employment opportunities, new and used vehicles, or you’d like a coupon to try out a new restaurant or salon.

But this time, one free magazine in Nagano Prefecture is shaking things up by offering a stylish look into the lives of some of the older residents around the area. If you’ve ever seen those Japanese grannies rocking purple hairdos, you’ll know right away what a brilliant idea they’ve struck upon, and they’ve even put up some promotional videos on YouTube to prove it!

Tsuru & Kame, which translates to Cranes & Turtles, is a free magazine that aims to show off “Oku-Shinano style”, or the lives of the elderly residents who have still “got it” as they carry on the traditions of the mountain and farm villages of Iiyama City in Nagano Prefecture (also known as Shinano). Both the crane and the turtle represent long life in Japanese folklore.

Not only is each issue full of some of the choicest looks around the area, they also offer a glimpse into the daily routine of the older generation, following them as they take their daily medication, ride scooters, or work in the fields.





Never have arthritis and dentures looked so glorious!

If you’re into Japanese retro, here’s an amusing ad the magazine released to promote their fourth volume over the summer.

Although produced and distributed in Nagano Prefecture, apparently copies of the magazine have even made their way over to Taiwan. You can also find issues at select bookstores and cafes around the country. But don’t worry if you can’t track down a copy, because much of their content is also posted on Tsuru & Kame‘s official Tumblr.

Wrinkles and fake teeth may not be society’s normal standard of beauty, but not everyone is lucky enough to live long enough to gain those badges of honor. If you’re curious about a different perspective of Japanese fashion or to hear more from Japan’s older, wiser population, we encourage you to check it out!

Source: YouTube/Tsuru & Kame (1, 2) via Japaaan Magazine
Top image: Tumblr/Tsuru & Kame
Insert images: Tumblr/Tsuru & Kame