Issey Miyake’s creative director Satoshi Kondo drew inspiration from the space-saving methods the brand deploys when shipping its designs for his spring/summer 2021 collection, which incorporates super-compact knitwear, and techy outerwear that can be worn in multiple different ways.
Below, British Vogue’s fashion critic Anders Christian Madsen shares five things to know about Issey Miyake’s spring/summer 2021 collection, revealed in a film during Paris Fashion Week.
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The collection was informed by the idea of compressing clothes
At a time when few are able to travel the way we did before, at least we can still ship clothes around the world. For the spring/summer 2021 collection, creative director Satoshi Kondo was inspired by the way Issey Miyake packs its garments for shipping, and chose to translate those ideas into his designs. It included a technique he called To Go, by which performance-like outerwear can be entirely compressed into its own decorative pockets.
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A gallery provided the backdrop
There was a Night at the Museum vibe to the Issey Miyake film, which followed a group of models making their way through a gallery space filled with the brand’s designs – some of which came to life through digital effects. A series of dresses featured patchworks of painterly motifs, which Kondo used to evoke the idea of wearing a work of art. Eventually, the film imagined a runway show, with clips illustrating the techniques behind intricate key pieces interspersed with the looks.
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New inventions were unveiled
Among the collection’s key pieces was a techy gilet named Form Body, “made by moulding fabrics into a soft shell that envelops the body”. Outerwear grouped under the title Out A Piece featured garments constructed from several pieces of fabric which can be zipped together differently, allowing the wearer to wear them in multiple different ways.
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Knitwear was entirely compact
Kondo debuted a new type of super-compact knitwear. “Stretchable like a sponge,” the pieces look body-conscious but refrain from constricting the physique, thanks to an advanced technique which also allows the wearer to roll it into compact, travel-appropriate forms.
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A poem was the final flourish
A nod to the era we’re living through, Kondo included a poem in the show notes emailed to the press. Like the collection, its title was Unpack the Compack. “When you open what is delivered. When you untie what is wrapped,” it began, followed by several verses. “When things transform, our perspective changes too,” the poem concluded. “And with this change we feel the beginning of something new.”
This article was originally published on British Vogue.