Design Catwalk
Ichiro Suzuki . Wearing a suit or maybe two

Two weeks ago I read an article about the process that drives many innovative ideas, seems that mixing seemingly disparate concepts together is, most of the time, a successful tool to get brand-new projects. Thinking about this assumption I remembered that the word brunch is a mixture between breakfast and lunch and that maybe they were right. So I found a connection with the work of Ichiro Suzuki, a designer who presented a collection where he mixes different styles creating a truly unique result.


A lot of people, even designers, think that being a womanswear designer is a lot harder than being a menswear designer, simply because of the variety of elements, volumes, shapes that compose a woman’s wardrobe. To me, it is a very simple-minded statement. Trying to do something innovative yet wearable in the field of menswear is so difficult exactly because, not thinking about the typical designers’ experimental exercises of pure concept,  men have a limited amount of garments and shapes in their closet: trousers, jackets, sweaters and a few more.

Ichiro Suzuki is a Japanese-born menswear designer based in London. He graduated from the London College of Fashion in 2006 with a first-class degree with honours, after which he joined Savile Row bespoke tailors Henry Poole & Co, where he has been trained in the art of cutting. His creations are a marriage between sartorial tradition and innovative design. About his training as a bespoke tailor, he says:

I did enjoy working there and was surrounded by very skillful individuals. Time spent with these tailors was never wasted and every single day I would learn something. However, as time went by, I began to ask myself if I really wanted to pursue a career as a tailor. Developing a collection got me into fashion design and the idea of becoming a creator grew in me. There must be a lot of tailors who can cut and tailor better than I do, so I thought: “I could be replaced with other people”. I was drawn to fashion design instead. Its diversity and the fact that you can inject and translate ideas and personalities in your creations attracted me.

In 2012 and 2013 Ichiro participated to the important ITS (International Talent Support) competition with two menswear collections inspired to this idea, winning the Fashion Collection of the Year prize in 2012. 2013 collection is called The Devil’s Cloth: The Invisible Becomes Visible,  inspired by the book “The Devil’s Cloth”, written by Michel Pastoureau.

Looking back on the history and the link between patterned, spotted, especially striped clothes and the idea of diversity in the Middle Ages, People in striped clothes or varieties (various), as medieval latin calls it, were normally described as something impure, aggressive, immoral, or deceitful. Striped clothes constitute the usual attribute of the traitor and they all disturb or pervert the established order. There is a huge gap between our contemporary sensibility – which turns “variety” into a positive value, connoting youth, cheerfulness, and an inquisitive mind, where the clothes become the privileged medium for bringing your personality – and the sensibility of people of the Middle Ages, who invested above all in that notion of pejorative values.



You may also like these articles: