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Tilda Swinton and Raf Simons are in Tokyo promoting the Italian film “I Am Love,” in which Swinton stars. Simons and his team at Jil Sander designed all of the costumes for Swinton’s character in the movie, which will be released in Japan on December 23. On Tuesday, Swinton sat front row at a fashion show for Jil Sander’s spring men’s and women’s collections, held at the Kisho Kurokawa-designed National Art Center. Models wearing the brand’s minimalist, tailored designs walked a long, white runway that snaked between the museum’s giant cement cones. “To have a show in the museum of art is fantastic because Raf is also an artist,” Swinton said on her way out of the venue.


This story first appeared in the October 26, 2011 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

At a cocktail party after the show, Simons marveled at how painless the show had been to put on, thanks to the organizational skills of the local team. “With Japanese dressers, it was very, very easy. I didn’t have to do anything,” he said. He also talked about his experience designing for film for the first time. “It was very different, and very much about colors,” he said. “The idea was to make [Swinton] stand out in this bourgeoisie Italian kind of world.” Simons mentioned that he would welcome the chance to design for the big screen again, saying that great costumes “can make a movie really stand out…can make it exceptional and memorable.”


Jil Sander’s chief executive Alessandro Cremonesi said that he and his team have big plans for Asia in the future, particularly in mainland China, where the company plans to open 5 to 10 stores per year over the next few years. “Asia for us is a priority,” Cremonesi said. “We are pushing our development and expanding our distribution here, as well as negotiating and signing negotiations with Chinese partners.”

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