I have been writing about the menswear shows of Tokyo Fashion Week for another publication at the moment and it has really got me thinking what a completely different beast men’s is from women’s fashion.  While there are a couple of brands in the men’s world who sneak on in of a season and fire a revolution of a silhouette at the unsuspecting men of the world (I am looking at you Rick Owens!).  The vast majority of men’s, and in particular Japanese men’s is governed by the simple process of refinement and perfecting existing ideas over revolution.  In that way seasons run into each other, popular items are re-released with only slight alteration and by the large the designer gets to cater towards the fans providing them quite literally with what they want.

KiryuyriK, whose designer Masakatsu Takayanagi polished his art at Bunka and under the might of Yohji Yamamoto is resolutely of the refinement over revolution camp dedicating himself to sharp comfortable fashion that is undeniably cool and well within the vast majority of men’s comfort zone.  That is not to say there is nothing to get your heart racing, since last season he has been experimenting with kilts / skirts, pushing a new form onto what seems to be a willing Japanese market.

KiryuyriK’s clientele is clearly ravenous for his work with seasons selling out on launch and rarely making it to sale.  Thanks to the evident Japanese popularity KiryuyriK has started turning up in a good number of foreign boutiques including Luisa Via Roma and H.Lorenzo catering towards male fans of credible fashion who want something a bit more casual without ending up in pure streetwear and at the same time strong and aggressive without arriving in the dark industrial wastelands of Julius and the gang.

As a whole there is a faultless level of detail in the work.  It is actually pretty dense to rival even the likes of the brands in Mens 109, but where this differs is that the quality is quite simply “there”, nothing looks cheap and I can assure you that in person the materials do live up to the highest of expectations.  In short this is the brand that most casual street brands wish they were, they have the strength of a ravenous fan base behind them willing to spend the money to allow them to create with quality and the dedication to allow the designer to just get on with it and design exactly as he would like (seeing pictures of the chap, I would say he basically designs for himself – and no bad thing).

Definitely check out and like KiryuyriK’s Facebook page here which has plenty of English content and if you look very hard amongst their very stylish client photos you might even spot a certain someone from our friends at Harajuju

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9 Responses to KiryuyriK S/S 2012 – Endless Refinement

  1. brad-t says:

    Aha, thank you!

    Yes, I became a very big fan of this brand. The shoes I got are just glorious. I have a few items pre-ordered from this season (the black crinkle suit and grey drape printed t-shirt) and I can’t wait for them to arrive. Vol. 2 was just revealed as well and there are some cool pieces.

    In my brand writeup for Kiryuyrik I did mention that …

    “Kiryuyrik’s collections tend to be evolutionary rather than revolutionary; pieces and themes are re-used from season to season.”


  2. Samuel says:

    @ brad-t

    Sorry for the similarities! You just really can’t avoid it, especially with this particular brand.

    Glad to hear you have found a brand that echoes your style philosophy at the moment and well done for getting on the case with pre-orders. I think even being based in Tokyo I might well struggle to get hold of much Kiryuyrik, particularly the non-basics like the kilts etc,


  3. brad-t says:

    Ahh don’t worry I’m not criticizing you. I’m happy to see this brand get some more exposure.

    Yeah I’m about to pre-order from Summer 2012 now 🙂

  4. Samuel says:

    @ brad-t

    Order away! I think it is pretty funny that in this day and age it is still pretty easy for us to be the only two people to write about a brand in English when they are such a big hit in Japan. But that is why I started this site all the way back when to actually get useful info out there and share with the world what would otherwise stay on this little ol’ island.


  5. brad-t says:

    Well I think you and I are very much doing your own things … I am basically trying to provide consumerist perception and exposure, more of a curation of retail items. You are doing really in-depth looks at collections and providing a perspective that living in Japan allows you to provide. We make a good team, haha!

    I posted this article on the Kiryuyrik FB page and it was well received 🙂

  6. Tokyo Telephone says:

    @ brad-t

    Agreed, what always gets me is your ability to pretty much nail a collection in a couple of of items. And more importantly, it is really practical, which for many men is what they need to get started. So many people look at an over-styled lookbook and just say – no – whereas if you isolate it to a neat jacket or pair of jeans they are more likely to get involved.

    Thanks for the share btw 🙂

  7. brad-t says:

    Wow, thanks a lot. I really appreciate it.

    Did you hear anything about Shade by Shellac? Can’t find anything online …

  8. Samuel says:

    @ brad-t

    No problem, as for Shade by Shellac I went to the opening of the store and you know what – it looked exactly like a a real Shellac store. Prices were at the highest end of 109 Mens really, 50000 yen for a leather jacket etc, t-shirts for 6000-8000 and so on. They clearly had just cut the quality of fabrics a bit to lower the price, but the designs were pretty much on the level of Shellac proper – I will do a proper report sometime soon.


  9. brad-t says:

    Wow, sounds pretty much perfect. Can’t wait to see it.

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