Comme des Garçons turns 40

Luxury Japanese label Comme des Garçons is marking its 40th anniversary. The company is launching a temporary, guerrilla-style collection called Black, harnessing the style, edge and the originality of its founder, said the Herald Tribune’s Suzy Menkes.

Comme’s founder and creative director Rei Kawakubo created black as the color of fashion’s rebel yell. According to the Tribune, Ms. Kawakubo, 66, is one of the great fashion forces from the last decades of the 20th century to now. Integral to her success is that she is too original to be pigeonholed — although others may see her as a symbol of feminism, judging her by the chic severity of an unvarnished face under a straight fringe, complex but plain clothes and flat shoes.

The guiding force of a fashion life that stretches way beyond clothes is an urge to think forward, encapsulated in new projects this month — from the “Black” stores to a collaboration with Vogue Nippon and an exhibition at the Paris store Colette.

“It is true to say that I ‘design’ the company, not just clothes,” Ms. Kawakubo told the Herald Tribune. “Creation does not end with just the clothes. New interesting business ideas, revolutionary retail strategies, unexpected collaborations, nurturing of in-house talent, all are examples of Comme des Garçon’s creation.”

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