akiko fukai

From Kimono to Comme des Garçons

With school finishing up for the both of us, we found it necessary to further our knowledge on fashion by attending industry events, all the while hopefully extending our networks.

We were lucky enough to be able to grab the last couple tickets to what ended up being a packed house.  Akiko Fukai is a Japanese fashion historian and took us through from its history all the way to what we know it as today.

Here are a few points we found interesting from the event

We’ve all heard how fashion transcends cultures but it was interesting to see specifically how the Kimono from Japan influenced Western culture whether it be famous painters such as André Derain to innovative fabrication and motifs used by Chanel. 

Japanese designers spend 80% of their resources/energy in the creation of innovative fabrics

Akiko mentioned how there were preconceived notions of Japanese fashion being only for the runway, but showed us that there was more than meets the eye. Renown figures in Western culture such as Steve Jobs and Michelle Obama wore pieces made from Japanese designers throughout their everyday life such as Issey Miyake and Junya Watanabe.

The Japanese approach design as a ready-to-wear art piece, having no concrete rules and allowing abstract imagination to take form in articles of clothing. This was interpreted by Westerners as Hobo-Chic as Yohji Yamamoto brought his unique silhouettes to the fashion table.  It was an emphasis on shapes created by clothing, regardless of the shape of the wearer.  This was a turn in the direction in women’s fashion as the beauty and elegance of the female body was reinterpreted by Yohji and other Japanese designers.