It is easy to forget in the midst of Fashion Week as Anrealage rolls out exoskeletons that wouldn’t fare all that well on the Yamanote line, that by and large Japanese designers tend to produce shows that don’t include anything (even for the purposes of styling) that won’t hit retail. This is amplified multiple times over in the case of menswear and even more so in the case Yoshida Roberto’s brand Headl_iner whose rock theme collections never stray far from the street fashion script. His personal love of motorcycles, roots in Okinawa (hence the leopard prints) and taste in music give his work direction, but by and large his goal is to give men the real clothes they want and can wear from Aoyama to Kabukicho. This time his goal has been solidified in a collection that aims to set a new standard for the men of Tokyo, a laudable aim indeed given that no-matter how well dressed the majority are in great streetwear, there is always a tendency to bung in a bit too much unnecessary detailing, cheap leather and poor quality denim.
All Headl_iner asks of Tokyo is that the leather is good, the silhouette is simple and that you wear it with pride. With that in mind, lets see what Headl_iner would like the base level of Japanese fashion to look like.
For this collection they have collaborated with German eyewear masters Mykita for those beautifully boxy blue frames that make what would otherwise be entirely conventional modern.
The double buttons on the waist-coat are a nice dandyish touch, but the real star of the outfit are those boots with the great denim topper. The flash of the blue looks fantastic in an all black outfit and would lower the temperature perfectly for summer.
Headl_iner can never resist a splash of his home colours from Okinawa.
The metal hardware on this jacket, right up to the fasteners that frame the collar are a nice step forward, without losing any ice cool credibility among the fans of the brand.
It was a shame that Headl_iner didn’t hold an open catwalk for their collection as in previous years, but for their stripped back approach I can’t help but think that it will have shown the people who want to see it exactly what they want to see – rather than an elaborate show that sends the wrong message.