In the midst of our Tokyo Fashion Week coverage, I thought I’d take the chance to have a little break from runway shows and high fashion for just a moment, and sit back and relax with the latest collection from one of my favourite Tokyo womenswear brands; Katie.
I don’t believe I’ve talked about Katie before (hey, there’s only me and Samuel running Tokyo Telephone!), and more’s the pity. In terms of clothing, Katie is hugely popular right now with the kind of girls you’re likely to see on RidSnap: a little bit arty, very cool, and who probably also shop at Nadia, G2? and Bambi & Faline. I’ve mentioned this kind style a little before when I was discussing Jouetie’s latest collection, but I’d go out on a limb and say that Jouetie is influenced by the Katie girls rather than the other way around…
Katie’s manifesto is pretty great, and if I can quote from the website: TAKI & LINDA’s brand “Katie” was born with its core theme of “Girly & Rock steady”. The collection is inspired by TAKI & LINDA’s love of music, movie, artists, punkband… and more! Katie seeks a style which has a girl’s charm. Any girl has a specially power, that is “pretty” side and “dark” side. Katie fans are aged between 20-30 and are working girls, fashion people, band girls and many other kind of cult girls!
So what can we glean from this? It’s a slightly older target market that you might expect, and judging by the profusion of photos of Courtney Love, kinderwhore and riot grrl imagery on the shop blog, it’s pretty easy to see where Katie is coming from. I think it’s kind of easy to bemoan the lack of a feminist movement in Japan (yes, I’m more than happy to call myself one), but it is there, it might be a little different from the kind of feminism I’m used to in the UK and on the internet – perhaps we could say that, like much of Japanese culture, it’s a little more subtle. Feminism and fashion in Japan is something I’d love explore further at a later date, here’s hoping I get the chance!
This collection from Katie, titled Angelic, is an assortment of vintage-inspired and mostly pastel-coloured items: sheer dresses, florals, chubby cherubs and even a few feathers make an appearance. It’s a great representation of current female street fashion in Tokyo, and it’s a look that popular across the city; from Harajuku to Koenji.
I think it would be doing Katie a disservice to refer it solely as kawaii – yes, it is cute, but there’s more depth here than your average pink and sparkly retailer.