Curious Trends


Folding in fashion

From origami, to kimonos and furoshiki, the Japanese are masters in the art of folding all manner of materials. With the strong influence of the Far East in fashion and design this year, it’s likely we’ll be seeing more beautifully folded fabrics in garments on catwalks over the coming months.

Here's a snapshot selection of designs featuring folds by Japanese fashion designers, as viewed at the Barbican’s current exhibition Future Beauty: 30 Years of Japanese Fashion:

Creative folds are on display in almost every design at the exhibition...

Folds ranging from loose kimono style pleats

To the trademark crunched pleats of Issey Miyake

And Ohya’s honeycomb style designs, along with concertina style ruff collars

Sculptural folds by Yohji Yamamoto

Structured folds by Rei Kawakubo

Amongst the most recent of the exhibits, are some very novel dresses by Issey Miyake. Miyake is currently involved with experimental projects, the newest of which, 132 5, is a series of intricately folded polygons made from sustainable recycled PET (polyethylene terephthalate/used plastic bottles). This transforms into clothing when placed on the body, addressing the needs and concerns of contemporary society.

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