RED Valentino, an affordable adjunct band of the Italian couture label, has launched its aboriginal flagship boutique in Tokyo’s Aoyama district. Behind the avant-garde glass-fronted exterior, wall-length egg-shaped “Snow White” mirrors, adamant castle-like aperture handles and best keepsake boxes are akin with 21st-century acrylic floors and a behemothic LED video awning — it’s a techno-princess dream world. Alike the bathrobe apartment — which are spacious, ablaze and furnished with checky vinyl chairs — are ancient like a bedchamber from a affected bogie tale.
The clothes are in the aforementioned vein: ruffles, amaranthine tones of blush and bows abound. An aboriginal anorak and brim fabricated from cardboard nylon, abundant with cape tucks and applique trimming, was a standout amid the offerings. Prominently displayed in the advanced windows is a point d’esprit pinklace dress, an Aoyama abundance exclusive, accessible for ¥111,300.
The Italian-made characterization launched in 2003 with the name RED actuality an acronym for “romantic aberrant dress.” It is a applicable moniker as red is an iconic blush for the Valentino stable, founded by above artist Valentino Garavani. Despite his retirement in 2007, the RED band has managed to steadily aggrandize with a aggregation of all-around authorization locations from Warsaw to Dubai, and the Tokyo annex is aing its sister flagship in Rome as the alone standalone boutiques in the world. (Misha Janette)
RED Valentino, 5-2-11 Minami-Aoyama; Minato-ku; (03) 6427-9174; www.redvalentino.com
Since aftermost year, Rakuten Ichiba, the online marketplace, has been accessible for business in assorted countries and regions, demography added and added Japanese appearance and appurtenances overseas. It opened its doors to English-, Chinese-, Korean- and Taiwanese-speaking barter with its bounded “e-boutiques” and complete shipping.
Are you attractive for adorned “forest girl” cardigans? For Momotaro jeans? Or how about Shibuya-style mori-gami wigs? All are accessible on the local-language Rakuten pages, and they all rank aerial in sales in Hong Kong, Britain and Canada.
Before, the better hurdle for across Rakuten barter was the accent barrier, but Rakuten is auspicious the abundant food on its pages to construe their sites and appoint English writers to accomplish themselves added global-friendly. It is additionally accouterment them with e-mail templates to affluence transactions.
These sites are entered into a “Welcome Program” that signifies the food can handle across business and they are offered aboriginal affirmation on promotional contest about the world. Still in its infancy, the translations and aeronautics are at times clunky, so an online advice account such as Google is a recommended backup. Still, it is a alpha to not alone solidifying Rakuten as a all-around player, but additionally seeing cross-border sales become a reality. (M.J.)
For added information, appointment en.rakuten.co.jp.
Designer Masaaki Homma of Mastermind Japan, berserk accepted amid the affluent elegant-punk appearance fan set, has appear that he affairs to cease assembly on the brand’s 15th ceremony in 2013.
It is accepted ability that Japan has been inexplicably clumsy to aftermath a globally accustomed affluence appearance and affairs brand, but it is arguable that Mastermind Japan has flirted with the aristocratic degree with its ¥10 actor black fur jackets and diamond-encrusted watches, which advertise out in a heartbeat.
“Luxury is not bent by aftertaste or style; it is about quality. Period. My items are complete in Japan and the abstracts are the complete best of the best. No one can altercate with this,” Homma says, apropos to his detractors who altercate that his street-punk appearance is not up to snuff.
But the abutment of Chanel artist Karl Lagerfeld and comparisons to the affection of Hermes accept ensured advantageous business for Mastermind Japan throughout the world. He alike staged a above appearance appearance and bright in Hong Kong for 500 aristocratic guests aftermost November. So why bandy in the anhydrate now?
“It’s accurate my aggregation is activity through a ‘bubble’ appropriate now, abnormally in Asia. But I fabricated this accommodation as a affiance to my customers: That the Mastermind pieces they own won’t abatement in value, and that they won’t affliction affairs from a cast that overstayed its welcome.”
Homma alludes to brands whose pieces end up in arrangement basements or in secondhand shops at a atom of their aboriginal value, black the defalcation of his coach Yohji Yamamoto.
“I don’t apperceive what I will do next,” he says. “But if I anytime appear aback to fashion, it won’t be in the aforementioned accommodation because added factories in Japan are closing. That is a far added grave amount to discuss, I think.” (M.J.)
For information, appointment www.mastermindjapan.com.
.efiLevol is a adolescent Tokyo-based appearance cast that has been on our appearance alarm for some time now. Established in 2006 by Central Saint Martins alum Takuya Tobise and above select-shop client angry designer/director Seiji Akutsu, the characterization fuses humor, gimmicks and cartoon in its access to men’s, women’s and uni apparel.
Previously alone accessible from online food or baddest boutiques, such as United Arrows and The Contemporary Fix, the .efiLevol team, has absitively to booty the attempt and accessible its own abundance in the backstreets of Nakame. About hidden from view, the bunched boutique offers a air-conditioned ambit of accoutrement and accessories and a curated alternative of books and music. It additionally stocks some attenuate accommodate items and bound copy pieces such as t-shirts and bread cases.
There’s additionally a tiny garden area, which is anon to be adapted into a amplitude for barter to relax, accept coffee and read, while adequate the store’s airy vibe.
The brand’s spring/summer 2011 collection, called “Tokyo Resort,” debuted at aftermost season’s Japan Appearance Week adjunct Apartment Link. The show, forth with their performance-art appearance abstraction video, served to admonish us that Tobise and Akutsu’s eccentricities, alloyed with a beginning use of gingham analysis and aboriginal patterns, accomplish them one of the capital’s best arresting prospects. (Paul McInnes)
.efiLevol, 1-9-6 Aobadai, Me-ku, Tokyo 153-0042, (03) 6416-0634; www.efilevol.com.
Although Milan and Paris are the best accustomed all-around appearance hubs, it’s London and New York that are currently bearing outstanding aptitude in menswear. Their abatement 2011 shows offered some absolutely agitative collections from J.W. Anderson and E. Tautz (London) and Band of Outsiders and N.Hoolywood (New York).
Tokyo, on the added hand, seems to accept about abandoned about menswear, with aloof a scattering of brands assuming as allotment of the capital Japan Appearance Week (JFW) schedule. Expect boastful shows, however, from Phenomenon and Yoshio Kubo, who will accompany acquaintance and action to proceedings. Relative newcomers Molfic should additionally affect with its minimalist and anatomic signature.
Off-schedule highlights accommodate Discovered, the androgyny-loving Banal Chic Bizarre, and aptform, which blends attitude with technology and has been one of the best technically and artistically able brands in contempo years.
Tokyo additionally manages to allure some arch macho models to JFW. Aftermost division saw both Adrej Pejic and Sen Mitsuji airing for labels such as Davit Meursault and Izreel. Let’s achievement they acknowledgment to aroma things up a bit in the aing annular of menswear shows in the city. (P.M.)
The JFW official afterwards affair at Chateau Robuchon and Le Baron de Paris on March 25 is accessible to the public. For added information, analysis the JFW website: www.jfw.jp.
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