Perhaps the most atmospheric presentation of fashion week took place at a beautifully lit shrine. It was a chilly but welcome change of pace from Shibuya Hikarie, the rather generic office/retail complex that is home to most of the week’s runway shows. Mikio Sakabe and Writtenafterwards’ Yoshikazu Yamagata oversaw Tokyo New Age, part of a retailer-driven initiative called Shibuya Fashion Week, that showcased the work of four young designers. It was a fascinating peek at some of the names likely to be seen in future editions of Tokyo’s fashion week calendar.
Distinctly Japanese themes dominated: Keisuke Yoshida showed a sweater depicting a scene in a karaoke parlor as well as a button-down shirt with extralong sleeves and an undone tie tucked through the waist of a pair of trousers — the latter perhaps a sendup of Tokyo’s drunken salary men. Rin Rinka incorporated kimono fabric accents into her creations, which included wide-legged pants and a cropped motorcycle jacket. Soshi Otsuki turned out pieces that referenced Buddhism, including jackets embellished with flowers reminiscent of those on Japanese temples and a sweatshirt bearing the face of Buddha himself. Finally, Kotoha Yokozawa produced pieces with a futuristic feel — including a gold lamé dress with pouf sleeves and pants in transparent vinyl — while her leather coat with an abstract multicolor lining was her strongest and most wearable look.