Sunday, November 24, 2013

G-Shock #46: G-Shock x Be@rbrick and Be@rbricks Galore at Concrete The Hague.

I got a little problems with timing deadlines. I had an article planned for today, but I didn’t had the everything complete here in time for photography, so it all has to wait another week. I promise you, next week's article will be a great one! In the mean time I got quite stressed, but fortunately Gerard Nijenbrinks (Horloge Platform Nederland) and a mysterious friend called B-Shock inspired me on an idea to do an other unplanned article and helped me along the way.
Photo's above by B-Shock, taken at the Be@rbrick x G-Shock release party at Concrete.
On 27 September Casio Nederland launched the Second Medicom Be@rbrick Collaboration G-Shock for their 30th anniversary of G-Shock with a great party at Concrete in Den Haag (The Hague). I was very tempted to go to this launch party, but it’s a 90 minute drive. As I normally work pretty late, it would not have been easy for me to get there in time. After I saw live pics of the party by B-Shock, I was pretty jealous. Sapporo beer and fresh sushi. Those guys at Concrete know how to throw a release party!
Since G-Shock Benelux became active, I have heard the name Concrete dropped many times by people of Casio and G-Shock Collectors. Unfortunately, I didn't know if I should contact Concrete, as they had a quite arty website, but no web shop. With the release of this G-Shock x Be@rbrick model, this has also changed. Now the website is pretty clear with a quite extensive web shop (see photo above).
Impression of the Concrete Store in the Papestraat in The Hague. 
Look at that "My First Be@rbrick" watching you when you enter the store.
Photo's above made by Gerard Nijenbrinks for 50 Gs
There was a good reason that Casio chose Concrete for the launch party. Concrete is not only a selected G-Shock Trend Store, you find a large collection of Be@rbricks and other designer toys too. Also you can find a fine selection of urban fashion and sneakers. The first Be@rbrick Collaboration G-Shock model, by the way, was in The Netherlands way launched by Gorrili in Rotterdam, who has a similar collection of G-Shocks and designer toys.
My little Be@rbrick and Kubrick box.
A small selection of my Be@rbrick figures. On the right 2 Pepsi x Star Wars 70% Be@rbricks, which I  were attached to Pepsi bottles in Japan.
I love my glowing Kiks TYO x Kinetics Be@rbrick.
An Aki Hoshino Kubrick and a TRON Kubrick x Be@rbrick duo set
Medicom Toy is a company founded in June 1996, located in Shibuya (Tokyo). They are specialized in designing figures and toys for movies, television, comics and games. In 2000 they launched the “block type” Kubrick figures, followed in 2001 by the Be@rbrick figures. The first Be@rbrick figure was a special Kubrick, created to celebrate the 100th birthday of the teddy bear. All Be@rbrick figures are made up of 9 parts, with moving head. hands, wrists and legs. The basic design rule is that all 9 parts stay intact. Only the print differs. This sounds pretty limited, but with use of all kinds of prints and materials, there are even wooden Be@rbricks, there have already more than thousand different bears been released. With all the different color combinations and brand collaborations, collaboration with G-Shock is a pretty obvious good idea. A lot of the Be@rbricks are sold in blind boxes. A buyer does not know which model he gets. He or she only knows which series it’s from. This makes these cute Be@rbricks highly collectable.
I always find interesting new be@rs, like this new metallic Gloomy Bear version. Might end up on my wanted list soon.
A basic Be@rbrick is 7 centimeters high and referred to as 100%. As they come in different sizes, they are often referred to their size. Usual other than 100% sizes are the 400% and 1000% size, but there are also 50% and 70% size. When I was visiting Japan in 2010, a 70% be@rbrick was given away with a bottle of Pepsi. In the past there have been made a 150% and a 200% model, but these sizes are very unusual.
For this 2nd collaboration a DW-5600 is used. This black model has a white face plate and a negative display. It’s a little bit pity it has a negative display, because it means there is no special backlight design in the background, but it contrasts nicely with the white face plate. The case has a plain glossy black bezel with white lettering. The straps are glossy black with white stars, flowers and the typical “@” signs. On the back of the watch a big bear head, filled with an “@” is engraved.
The DW-5600MT-1 comes with the 3229 module, which means that the internal calendar is programmed until December 2099. As the DW-5600 is a basic model, you find basic functions on board. An Alarm Function with Hourly Signal, a 24 hour Stopwatch function and a 24 hour Countdown Timer.
The package is very unusual. The box is a huge. It is a cube with sides of approximately 16.5 cm. There are bear head shaped windows in the box, that give you a view inside the box. The actual watch box inside is a black bear head. When you open the head, you find the watch on a good quality watch stand, which can slide out of the head. A pretty clever designed construction.
My furry night company during the 2 hour photo shoot won't move from my side. 
The Be@rbrick x G-Shock is in The Netherlands only available at Concrete, so that is where I got this watch from. It retails for €129.-, which is a good price for such a cool collaboration model. This model is of course available in other selected stores in Europe for the same retail price. As a G-Shock collector it would be also very interesting to try to get the second G-Shock Be@rbrick. I have myself also a small modest Be@rbrick collection as I have bought some of these figures from time to time. Unfortunately I couldn’t find this second G-Shock Be@rbrick in The Netherlands, but I couldn’t resist. I have bought a 100% in Hong Kong, which means I will get it here in about 14 days from now. At the moment you still can get hold of these bears pretty easily. If you live in The Netherlands or Europe, you can try Concrete at Actually it was the same way I got my watch. As I got this idea Friday afternoon, it was all a bit hasty, but the service of Dirk (I heard he is huge Be@rbrick collector) at the web shop was great. Even though I was a bit late, he managed to get my watch in the mail in time, so I got it Saturday afternoon. As I also own the first Be@rbrick G-Shock for their 30th Anniversary, I am pretty happy to have them both. It’s a nice set together, black vs White, DW-5600 vs DW-6900.
I like to thank Gerard Nijenbrinks, who works near the Concrete store in the Papestraat in The Hague and made a series of photo’s of the store and B-Shock for additional photo’s of the Be@rbrick G-Shock Launch photo’s on September 27, 2013. You both have been an inspiration to write this article. Also a big Thank You! to Dirk from Concrete for getting my watch here in time, the press note and the nice be@r. Thanks!

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