The Tokyo Menswear Label Making Vintage Patchworks Cool Again

The Tokyo Menswear Label Making Vintage Patchworks Cool Again

by Dylan Kelly

Shinichiro Ishibashi, the Japanese designer at the helm of Tokyo-based label KUON, has been fine-tuning his signature vintage patchwork aesthetic for the past four years. Last season, he debuted a well-rounded Fall 2020 collection with an intimate presentation in SoHo during NYFW, placing the brand in the international marketplace and setting the tone for future collections.

This season, his plans to return for September's fashion shows were cancelled due to the pandemic, and in lieu of a live debut, Ishibashi is welcoming the Spring 2021 collection with a peaceful short film set in a tranquil forest. In fact, Ishibashi cites inspiration for the collection from the traditional Japanese aesthetic discipline KACHŌFŪGETSU, a term which directly refers to the appreciation of nature's beauty.

Models walk amid the greenery and stand under towering trees, and showcase the masterful craftsmanship present in each garment. Soothing music underscores the change from frame-to-frame as each new assemblage sees light for the first time.

Rooted in this collection are the Japanese stitching techniques of boro, sashiko and sakiori, which served to elevate the intricate and dominating patchwork that appears throughout. Within the range, wide-legged denim pants and dual-tone striped t-shirts boast a casual look, while draping trench coats and button-downs of mixed textiles provide more elevated styling.

Earth tones and subtle floral prints define the colorscape, and the eclectic melding of fabrics stresses the organic nature of each style. In conscious collaboration with local manufacturers and craftsmen, Ishibashi confidently instills a heightened sense of singularity across the entire line.

Catch the full KUON video, below.

Photos courtesy of KUAN