Revealing Yohji Yamamoto

And the winner is…

Yohji , born on october, 3rd, 1943, is a Japanese designer based in Tokyo and in Paris.
Yamamoto owns the Japanese Medal of Honor, the Ordre national du Mérite, the Royal Designer for Industry and the Master of Design award by Fashion Group International.
Yohji Yamamoto became internationally renowned as a fashion designer in the early eighties for challenging traditional notions of fashion by designing garments that seemed oversized, unfinished, played with ideas of gender or fabrics not normally used in fashionable attire such as felt or neoprene. Other works revealed Yamamoto’s unusual pattern cutting, knowledge of fashion history and sense of humour. His work is characterised by a frequent and skilful use of black, a colour which he describes as ‘modest and arrogant at the same time’.

Central to Yohji Yamamoto’s work are the textiles. ‘Fabric’ he said once ‘is everything’. Each one of the fabrics used in his collections are made to his specifications by different craftspeople in and around Kyoto in Japan.
Yohji Yamamoto’s custom-made textiles use a variety of traditional Japanese techniques , as “Shibori” and “Yuzen” ,and other more common weaves such as gabardine and tweed. 
*Shibori: is a particular method of dyeing cloth by binding small areas with either silk or cotton thread and using a wooden bucket to isolate areas to be dyed. Due to its intricate nature, it is one of the most work-intensive and expensive ways of dyeing. Yohji Yamamoto used this technique in his Autumn/Winter 1994-5 and Spring/Summer 1995 womenswear collections.
*Yuzen: is a dyeing technique which originated in Kyoto in the 1700s and is traditionally used for Kimonos. It consists of over 20 steps including design, drawing, gluing, dyeing and decorating. Yohji Yamamoto uses this dyeing method frequently, often through non-traditional motifs as can be seen in his Autumn/Winter 2009-10 menswear collection.
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Yamamoto was involved in a relationship with fellow Japanese avant-garde fashion designer Rei Kawakubo of Commes des Garcons fame.
Yohji and Rei Kawakubo

Over the years Yamamoto has also worked with a number of collaborators in different fields. In particular his work with now famous fashion photographers such as Nick Knight, Paolo Roversi and Craig McDean has resulted in now often iconic fashion imagery.
Yamamoto’s daughter, Limi Feu, has followed in his footsteps. She debuted as a fashion designer at the Tokyo Fashion Week in 2000, showed in Tokyo from 2000 to 2007, and debuted to critical acclaim in Paris in 2007.

Yamamoto black suits – spring 2009 


And here is a video of an interview of Yohji to “London College of Fashion” at the “Victoria & Albert museum”. 
This video is kinda long, but is very rewarding!! We can see Yohji talking a lot about his life and inspirations, and about fashion, something he openly says to hate.
Hope you’ve enjoyed it!

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