One of the most liberating moments in fashion is when you actually stop trying to look good, and try searching for an aesthetic that is all your own. After all, the logical conclusion of dressing to look good can lead to the Stepford Wives perfectionism of CanCam, or my personal path that saw me spending hours in the gym, too long on sun-beds and many lost hours spent with straighteners. However, I do think you have to explore that path to know where it leads (as long as you remember to turn back), and hopefully it leads you to be confident enough not to seek approval and just have at it. Take for example the case of Rei Kawakubo – true confidence is giving no explanation, asking for no praise or assessment, and just giving and creating for no other purpose than the process itself.
What I am getting at is that this collection from Toga is for men who are not scared to throw a curve ball and express themselves, not in an exuberant Harajuku street kid way, but in the manner of a credible adult. This season we find Toga picking up where it left off last season toying with ideas from Japanese menswear from the 50s and 60s, but in the mood to take a lot of risks as we build to the end of the lookbook.
We start conservative enough, with the strong shapes that the main Toga women’s line is known for, but this time earthed in classic menswear.
Toga Virilis is unashamedly luxurious, but at a really nice price point (if you are in Japan that is) for such quality. It always surprises me that no big department store has a great selection of Toga, but then again that gives you a chance to go to their very cool flagship right in the heart of Harajuku.
Love the high waist and bowling shirt combo.
And now things get interesting.
The high neck leather riders vest on the left is a perfect example of Toga at the top of their game, pulling uncanny twists on classics but making it seem natural.
The official Toga homepage is here, and while I know that this is not to everyone’s taste, if I have inspired some of you to give this brand a closer look, then my work here is done.