Taro Horiuchi (En) 1/2

“I didn’t want to make a statement with impact, and wanted to make creations in a very quiet place.”

-Could you explain the concept for this collection?

Faith, nature and time –I worked around these 3 keywords to create this collection. The graphics for this collection are numbers from 0-9, drawn by hand repeatedly, and it is this sort of straightforward repetition that brings beauty. Also, as a collection, I wanted to use Gray only and see what I could do with that.

-What were the reactions from buyers and the press after the trade show?

The response I got from the press was good, but the buyers told me that the prices were too expensive. The quality and the design were excellent they said, but they pointed out about the price. But I don’t plan to change that and I don’t really see any point in lowering the prices either.

- So you don’t plan to make any changes about that.

No, not for now. I want to play the game here, to break through in this ballpark, so.

-What was the most important thing for you in this collection?

Not to make it “loud”. I didn’t want to make a statement with impact, and wanted to make creations in a very quiet place.

-Your garments are beautiful but because of the lack of impact I thought there were many details that wouldn’t be noticed unless actually worn. Maybe it would have been better to have models?

Clothes have to be worn in order to really “get” them, and I think that’s fine, in a way. I won’t be doing a cat walk for the next season either, but I plan to make a video so that people can see the items that I make, as well as look at the clothes in motion when worn by a person. Plus I plan to have one or two models at the installation too.

-So your next collection will be shown at a very spacious venue like the one you used for this collection?

I think doing installations suits me more than doing shows, -showing my work through space, garments sound and smell to show my work as a whole.

-What aspect did you elaborate on for this installation?

To show things that you cannot in a show, through the installation space. To come up with things you can do using the system inside a space. For example, with video, sound and the sensation of stepping on Eucalyptus leaves. The garments themselves are very simple so to put weight on adding extra elements and creating extra value was I think the best way to show my work, and it would be difficult to do a show with these clothes too. Ideally, it would be best to do a show and an installation.

-Where do you think you stand in today’s market?

Looking at my clothes from a domestic brand’s point of view, think my stuff is expensive for a young designer, even compared to brands that are selling well, but I think I am in between that and courtiers. It’s hard to come up with how to do things in that position, but to I think the most productive thing to do would be to show my clothes to the public. It is very hard to have your own store, but I hope to make something like a showroom.

-You mean, not for each season?

It’s okay to have concept or ideas for each season, but I don’t think wholesale is the only way for selling clothes. For example, I’m thinking that a customer can come into my atelier and order something to be delivered two months later. Things of high quality can’t always be in your hands immediately. I hope to meet the needs in that way too. I think today’s fashion is too much like a one-game-match, where the stores make you buy things without giving you real time to think about it, which is probably the stores strategy. I don’t want to make my challenges in that sort of place. I want to create things that customers want even if they have to wait.

-Could you talk about the demographic of the customers who actually made orders this time?

There were two types. One was middle age money class who spend substantial money on clothes, and the other was the creator type who liked my concepts.

-Did they match the tier you were aiming for?

It would be great to have the creator types to like your stuff and buy them but they don’t necessarily have the money, so it’s very idealistic to have the two types and carefully nurture the balance. I also think that many of the wealthy people know about real quality and good garments, and can tell the value just by feeling garments, so I think that is very important too.

-Yet, I felt that the clothes were a bit too slim for that class.

Yes, that is a very good point. I’m not interested in only making slim designs so I’m thinking of creating beautiful lines in larger garments.

-Were the lines slim for this collection because that is what you felt is most beautiful?

More like that was close to what I wanted to create. Still that is not a limited thing. Obviously, there is a range to my imaginative world and that is something I chose for this time, but I think it’s possible to make a shift from there. In terms of function, I put the weight on ventilations rather than the comfort of the fit, so that is another point to fix.

to be continued..

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