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Monday, January 26, 2009

Design heroes: Kenzo Takada

Kenzo Takaka
Kenzo Takaka - by thevintagelaundry on

In 2006 Japanese fashion genius and founder of Kenzo designed a collection of crystal for Baccarat as well as a housewares line of luxe tableware, bedding, pillows and even playing cards. Kenzo also launched a unisex fragrance in June of 2008 to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the fashion label. It is called Vintage and was created with the idea of capturing some of the spirit of the seventies, the decade that saw Kenzo Takada enter the couture scene in Paris...... The purple bottle decorated ... with a hippie peace-and-love sign can be bought in four differently designed outer packages - and I love it all!

Born: Kyoto, Japan, 1940

Studied: Takada was one of seven children and developed an interest in fashion through reading the magazines of his sisters. He quit Kobe University to try to become one of the first male students at Tokyo's Bunka Fashion College (Bunkafukuso Gakuin). His parents did not approve of his career ambitions and he had to work part-time in Tokyo to support himself while he did evening prep courses in design. After some six months, he was finally accepted to the prestigious college and the kind of determination that got him there was to serve him well in the future.

Kenzo Spring 1999Takada's first work borrowed heavily from traditional Japanese styles but it was his 'big silhouette' designs which drew worldwide attention. His designs made him something of a trend setter for young fashion. In Japan, he is highly regarded as a pioneer who introduced Japanese fashion design to a world audience. Always very selective of his fabric, Takada in recent years has moved into the design of furniture coverings and household items. In September 1999, he announced that he was handing over the reins of his fashion house to his assistants.

Each week I plan on making installments on this series called Design Heroes. My goal is to profile iconic designers who have made waves in the design world and have personally contributed to my style sense - I hope you enjoy!


Alkemie said...

I absolutely adore Kenzo houseware!