Rei Kawakubo invited editors and buyers to a chilly make-shift painted green room and played out a quintessentially entertaining collection inspired by teenagers and Technicolor cartoon characters.
The enchanting collection explored Kawakubo’s signature slouchy silhouettes, opening with a textured pink coat and leather cap that sprouted rabbit ears. The story continued with a medley of pink, yellow, taupe and red roomy outfits worn on young boys wearing awkward and curly bobbed wigs.
Adolescent was clearly a theme as boys-in-tailcoats, long blazers, floppy jackets, capri-length drop-crotch pants and over sized hoodies were presented with a careful softness. Interior fabrics and oddball colour combinations explored Kawakubo’s fascination with taste and texture.
Innocence and naivety seemed to be the thread for the collection and the non-contrived approach was refreshingly brilliant – both beautiful and slightly disconcerting. Stephen Jones who crafted black caps sprouting Mickey Mouse and Bugs Bunny ears endorsed Kawakubo’s kitsch capers.
Kawakubo prophesying a fey approach to menswear isn’t a new direction but the exploration of textures and complex hues is intrinsically Comme. The designer has a magical ability to capture the moment in menswear and the audience was spell bound by her latest contribution.
Later this year Comme des Garçons will open a New York-based version of their Dover Street Market store proving the canny ability of Kawakubo and her team to on one hand present activist fashion and simultaneously build a hugely commercial business.