It was with a certain amount of sadness that we sat down to watch Araisara’s final show at Tokyo Fashion Week – after making her name here in Japan, Arai is off to pastures new in Europe for her next collection.

According to an overheard conversation between a couple of buyers seated next to us, the Araisara brand is pretty huge in Switzerland, and it’s easy to see why the Swiss have taken to Arai’s stunning designs. This collection featured beautiful flowing fabric and the signature watercolour prints that have become a favourite of fashion fans looking for a little extra artistic flair. Models kept it simple with relatively bare faces and pulled-back hair, and this really allowed the clothing design to take centre stage… along with the Japanese flautist, cello and piano player who provided the musical accompaniment to the catwalk show.

This was indeed a sensational presentation: not only were we treated to fantastic high quality fashion design, we were also listening to a charms musical performance and towards the end a powerful citrus smell was realised into the air (it was a bit lost on me – I thought someone behind me had opened a packet of lemon drops!). Scentsational, I think you’ll agree.

It was a huge audience who packed the room completely, and it just goes to show how wide an appeal Araisara has: it’s elegant, feminine and with a distinctly Japanese mastery of colour and pattern cutting. I think what I really like about Araisara is that the clothes are meant to be seen moving. I’m not exactly a pro-photographer, but I’ve tried to capture some of the movement, and I hope it gives a sense of action. As much as I love exhibitions and showrooms, seeing clothing on a mannequin unfortunately doesn’t really allow for the kind of 3D experience that a runway shows does, and I think that’s something I need to become more aware of in the future as someone who writes, thinks and dreams about clothing.

I love the open back on this otherwise down-to-earth jacket.

Inspired by tradition Chinese patterns, this purple and gold combination was the star of the show.

Probably my favourite Araisara outfit thus far…

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2 Responses to Araisara – A/W 2012 Collection – A Swan Song in Tokyo

  1. Andrew says:

    What a great collection! I don’t normally get as excited about women’s clothes, but there are some really great pieces in here. I especially love the long black dress with the white flowing top, but also the subtle prints and the flowing fabric everywhere. I think it’s also cool that some of these look so different in the back than in the front–at the least there are the jackets you mentioned, plus the skirt in the 3rd video. Which, by the way, I never would’ve known was so short in the back if not for the video, I love that you guys have started including those!

    It’s probably just the flowy fabric and my lack of a larger frame of reference, but this reminded me of Yohji Yamamoto a little bit too.

    Oh and that purple color is awesome.

  2. Rebecca says:

    @ Andrew – Great to hear from you again! I’m really glad you liked this collection – I think it’s wonderful. I know what you mean, I get a little… tired of seeing just dresses sometimes, but I’m a huge fan of Araisara’s style. 🙂

    Ah, I see what you mean about Yohji: maybe it’s the sense of movement?

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