ON FAST FASHION :
“The people in the poor towns of Bangladesh or Vietnam, they don’t wear fashion so they don’t know what they are making. So naturally they cannot put their spirit in the clothing, so it comes out like shit!”
“now there are so many … fashion …. shitty clothing …. just competing …. how cheap and how sexy … cheap and sexy. cheap and sexy…. wasted … wasted … real designer has to be more stronger”
“they are wasting costume, like toilet paper. I am praying, don’t waste clothes. But the general trend in the fashion market, in the world became like that. So i am asking to myself, Yohji, you didn’t work enough. So this is my fault. Its quite easy to criticize the fashion movement. But as a fashion designer, if i could be more stronger, maybe ….. ”
Let me talk like an old man. Young people, be careful. Beautiful things are disappearing every day. Be careful.…You don’t need to be [shopping at fast-fashion stores], especially young people. They are beautiful naturally, because they are young. So they should even wear simple jeans and a T-shirt. It’s enough. Don’t be too much fashionable.…The brand advertising is making you crazy. You don’t need to be too sexy. You are sexy enough.
ON COLOR BLACK :
Once upon a time black became a fashionable uniform. Around 1990. fashion people started wearing just black, it became a uniform for them. There are so many types of black. Some of them are ugly. There’s blue, red and green shades of black. The sunlight makes them look different. There’s a whole world of black – sometimes i get bored with what i have and start looking for a new black that i find exciting.
Black is the end of color. Wearing black is like saying, ‘I will not bother you, and please do not bother me.’ And sometimes, when I am making clothes, I concentrate too much on the patterns and fabrics that I forget to use colors.
ON ACCESSORIES :
“My understanding is that the word accessory can mean an accomplice in crime. This implication makes me hate accessories even more. I wonder how in the world people can bear to have those things around their necks and on their wrists, the reasons for it evade me. The display of ornaments and decorations in Europe seem to me nothing more than a frivolous game played with the cultural heritage that one race has looted from another. The fact that it is shiny, it is rooted in its value as a commodity. I will never understand how gold came to be the foundation of the world’s economy. I dislike pearls as well. The shells cracked open, and the asymmetrical ones are discarded–the practice strikes me as unseemly.”
WABI SABI :
Many journalists kept saying, “Yohji, why are you making such dirty clothing?” ‘ he is saying, referring to the way his clothes come in many shades of black and can often look worn in, a little distressed around the edges. ‘But I was seriously thinking that those are beautiful compared to the established style of garment from other famous designers at the time. Dirty is good.’
ON FABRIC :
“i want people to keep on wearing my clothing for at least 10 years or more, so i requested the fabric makers to make a very strong, touch finish. It’s very close to designing army clothing. One reason why young people love second-hand clothing is that it has a character, or it has a story already, or it has some human message. So i’m always close to second-hand clothing or army clothes.”
Read about his fabric: He is known for the longevity of his fabrics. He keeps the cottage industries that specialize in techniques that master the weave of long lasting fabrics alive.
Yamamoto recounts that he was inspired by old French war movies starring actresses in army uniforms . ‘I found that so sexy. The body is protected. And covered. In a very hard way. And so you are forced to ask yourself “what’s inside?” When you have no freedom, your sexuality becomes stronger.’ Again, this subtlety of observation and the implicit nuances regarding sexuality go against the Western notion, expressed by the designer, that ‘Dolls … this is what many men want women to be … just dolls.’
“…looking at people passing …. and for me … can be male or female, the people wearing some baggy swingy clothing … they look so sexy … because i imagine whats inside … young people showing too much, its so direct … i feel no sexual attraction … so please hide it … ”
This is as much as i could steal from the books to put online. I hope he continues to inspire people, esply fashion designers. He is one of the few designers who really cares … about women, about environment, about his craft, …. If anyone is looking to purchase his books, i recommend ‘Yamamoto & Yohji‘. It is the most comprehensive book from what i have seen. I would have been happy to own just that one book of his. Links to: Part 1 & Part 2.