Japan is well known for amazing technology and application of technology into daily life. One only has to ride a shinkansen to be amazed by the innovation of Japanese engineers. However, how much have you heard about Japan being known for inventive fashion design? For those in the know, Issey Miyake is a prominent Japanese designer who is known not only for his art but even his fragrances.
This Hiroshima-born graphic designer has pioneered Japanese design and art. One of his first experiments was playing with methods of pleating that allowed for movement and flexibility, resulting in movable fabric that felt like wearable art. His influence is felt everywhere from clothing, fragrances, and design. However, one of his most famous innovations can be seen on ladies’ arms all across Japan – the bao bao bag.
No, this does not stand for the ubiquitous yummy buns sold at convenience stores, but an actual bag that is both beautiful in design and function. Drawing on the design concepts mentioned above, Issey Miyake’s brand was able to make functional bags that have fluid motion. Taking cues from Japanese origami along with fashion, the design encompasses his tenants of having “shapes made by chance” so one can “roll it, fold it, lay it down and hold it”. The triangular foldable design is quite malleable and beautiful at the same time.
This type of style was also shown off in his clothing design of fashion shows past. By taking Japanese concepts and making them useful and even wearable, Miyake has definitely elevated form and function. For those interested in his designs and who want to learn more, he is the co-creator of 21-21 Design Sight, a museum and research center in Roppongi that is open to the public. Its recent Zaka exhibit was quite a hit, again featuring his designs applicable to useful things around the house for daily living.
So if you want a piece of Japanese art and fashion, make sure to check out these special bags ASAP! Happy shopping!