roomsLINK is the biggest trade show of Tokyo Fashion Week, and as such offers an unparalleled opportunity to see all the latest developments in Japanese fashion all in one place. For us it is a great opportunity to bother designers, feel fabrics and hopefully put some of the collections in a wider context. By doing so you get a sense of where trends are likely to be going, and on that last score this season’s roomsLINK made things very obvious indeed.
On entry to were greeted by an installation by the Akihabara based Gokai boutique, who had created a tented area packed with an assortment of technology and iconography which incorporated work by Balmung, runurunu and Bodysong. Up to the next floor and the official media cafe had been taken over by the Dempa Gumi who we last saw at Akihabara Fashion Week. And who were the very first designers you saw in the fashion area? Mikio Sakabe and Jenny Fax’s conflicting visions of Japanese school girls.
Without a doubt pop culture was the key theme of roomsLINK, and as we made our way around we couldn’t help but spot more and more references and flourishes in the most unlikely designer’s work. Join us in a walk around the event space:
Jenny Fax’s shojo manga inspired prints.
A Korean brand who produces “moral” fashion, i.e. carbon neutral, no-fur or leather, etc
The young designers areas were positively heaving with pop-culture references, although the designer of this dress did claim Christianity as her influence, but you do have to wonder whether that might have come through an anime lens.
The official media area had been made over to look like the Dear Stage bar in Akihabara, much to the amusement of our guide who was showing us around.
It might have been a bit of a shock to some attendees who didn’t really know where to look, but the theme was a perfect play on what the designers were actually producing.
Fugahum wallets inspired by Neon Genesis Evangelion (the creative director has recently started working for the Eva brand – Radio Eva)
A hand-painted gorilla skull for the same talented designer.
Fabulous work from the constantly controversial Jenny Fax.
More Pop culture imagery from Fugahum.
Flea Madonna’s mix of light and dark imagery was a big hit,
as were these fantastic cuffs that walked the same tightrope between cute and fetishistic that most Tumblr with “Kawaii” in the title do.
Some young Taiwanese designers’ work.
And a bizarre dog creature with taxidermy elements created by the male half of the Shiroma design partnership.
The Alice Wild collaboration line from Makin Jan Ma and abc was looking fantastic this season with a pleasant amount of cartoony colour blocked clothes.
The figure that occupied our table where we had a drink after we made it out – there was no escape!
I hope you enjoyed that journey through this particular trend from roomsLINK, we are going to highlight one or two more key themes when we get the time, so stay tuned for those very soon. In the meantime let me know what you think of the pop culture and otaku inspired fashion above.