Fendi Utilizes Traditional Japanese Techniques During The Construction Of Their Latest AW22 Couture Collection.

This season’s collection intersects raw couture tradition with the modern, drawing parallels between the East and West.

Exhibiting the rawest origins of couture traditions, Fendi’s Autumn/Winter 2022 Collection was approached by Artistic Director of Couture and Womenswear, Kim Jones, and the craftspeople of the FENDI ateliers as a palimpsest. Jones summons the focal point where iterations, transparencies, and fragments of the past make up the present and move subtly into the future. Gone are the grand edifices, instead replaced by a softer, more yielding feeling of simplicity and agency for the woman in the clothing.

“This season, I wanted to step away from Rome, or at least I wanted to place Rome in a global context. In this collection, we look at fragments of different cities, namely Kyoto, Paris, and Rome. The fragmentary nature of things is echoed throughout the collection, like snatches of memory or the impression of things past, present and future.” – Kim Jones.

With Kyoto, the cultural capital of Japan, as the focal point, fragments of kimono fabric from the eighteenth century became a foundation for the future, as both recreations and reinterpretations within the collection. Japanese techniques such as Kata Yuzen, which has remained unchanged for centuries, and Rope Mountain, an abstract reinterpretation of traditional fabric fragments, were utilized during the construction of these fabrications. These techniques both ground and signify the collection.

Made in Kyoto as traditional silk panels, here they are sliced and asymmetrically reformed in floor-length dress silhouettes. The cascading Acer palmatum leaves from the fabric design – named “Ode to Autumn” in the 1700s – find various forms throughout, particularly in the proliferation of delicate embroideries that reach a crescendo in the final tulle gowns of the collection.

Parallels are drawn between East and West, masculine and feminine, the natural and the man-made, tradition and the modern, right through Autumn-Winter. The Kata Yuzen dresses are echoed and find their continental counterpart in the sinuous, glittering crystal cages that more reflect the architectonic spirit of Paris in their construction and fabrication, yet still ultimately frame and yield to the body.

A sense of French ‘Japonisme’ and art deco ornament in the flou is fused with a more Italian take on the tailleur in the Vicuna, leather and fur work. Nods to masculine codes of tailoring are found in Vicuna fabric suiting and cognac calf leather pieces, with their structures, emphasized internally and at times externally. There are also personal pleasures, just for the wearer in the construction of many of the items – internally, traditional Japanese fabrics are used as linings and quiltings in suiting as well as underpinnings in dresses.

Watch the full show below:

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