Killer title isn’t it? Sums it up too. But there’s more to it than first meets the eye – or so I’ll have you believe.

In Japan, 23 May is kisu no hi (キスの日), in other words ‘Kissing Day’. Some trace the origin of this day to the first Japanese film to feature a kiss scene, Hatachi no Seishun, which was apparently released on 23 May 1946. Admittedly the lead role placed cellophane on her lips before kissing, but thankfully there’s no mention of that in Kissing Day. Whatever the origins, 23 May happens to be our anniversary. How kawai can you get?

Kissing Day: two bums come together

Now, we’re like most couple who still believe in the odd bit of romance: we like to celebrate our anniversary in style. There might be a spot of the afore-mentioned chaste kissing, maybe a little gift and some gooey love words exchanged. This year, we actually spent the day together at the beach in Kamakura…

Swimming with whatever evil lurks beneath…

Dancing on the beach…

And meeting savoury characters in Kamakura.

But we were both looking for something a little more permanent, something we could hold onto and that would track our progress through time. So we thought up the Annual Exchange of Clothes.

Me as you, and you as me… in 2015. Madame is wearing a Muji trench coat and a Michael Kors bag. No clue what the rest is. Monsieur is wearing grey pants by Levi’s, white Onitsuka Tiger shoes, a shirt by Kooples and a jacket by Pine.

 

Every year, we dress up as each other, carefully selecting clothes that we feel best represent the other throughout the past year. As you can see, my darling looked pretty smart throughout most of 2014, while I looked like… well, a bloke. My wife tried her best to look hard and male-ish for the picture: I’ll let you be the judge of how well she fared. For my part, I reckon I look quite hot (and no, I didn’t shave my legs).

‘Girls who are boys who like boys to be girls who do boys like they’re girls who do girls like they’re boys… Always should be someone you really looooove…’ says Blur. Monsieur is sporting a sweater by Still by Hand, pants by Common Tempo, and Y-3 shoes, and carrying a Gudetama bag and laundry detergent. Madame is wearing a skirt by Uniqlo/Ines de la Fressange, some top and hat, a bracelet by Hermes, a bag by monsieur mishiba and shoes. (2016)

 

We stepped it up a notch in 2016 year with a few more accessories, including laundry detergent (I have a complicated love affair with my washing machine), bags and bracelets. The making-of was quite exciting too – especially for passers-by and our gay neighbour who was quite fluttered.

Photo shoot in front of our cosy little home in Tokyo (2016).

So there you have it. I coyly suggested we do that a little more often, but my sweetheart looked at me weird. Oh well! can’t wait for next year…