One of my favourite stores to browse slash research for young Japanese labels is Wall in Harajuku’s La Foret (part of the H.P. France boutique group in Japan), not least because it’s right by the entrance on the ground floor and because the staff are always so brilliantly dressed. On this last trip, the thing that caught my eye was an installation by Tokyo-based designer and textiles artist Yuki Fujisawa and her delicate ombre and foiled Aran knits. UK’s Katie Jones isn’t the only Aran knit nut in the world as Fujisawa has for the past few years, been taking vintage Aran knits, mending and then re-dyeing and printing them in colours that she calls “invisible”.
“I believe in the power of hand making textiles, as it adds strength to materials. Through this strength, the material is able to possess with in the quality of invisibility,” says Fujisawa on her bio page. The hand is evident in the way that she carefully creates hand-dyed colour gradiations, exploring every subtlety there is in the combination of pastels, brights and the natural cream of the Aran knit. On top of these sublime colourscapes, Fujisawa highlights the relief patterns of the knits, with just the right amount of screen printed metallic foiling, which is all done by hand at her atelier.
It seems Fujisawa believes in gestating one solid idea and developing it to its full potential as this “Sweater in the Memory” project has resulted in a series of sweaters that fully explore the dream-like colour schemes of Fujisawa’s imagining, inspired by both the natural and the unnatural world. Some of the earlier incarnations where Fujisawa dip dyes fluffy angora knits reminds me of the homespun knitwear that used to be sold in a shop in Camden called Stitch Up that existed in the late 90s, where I would go and coo over brightly coloured hand-dyed thermal vests. Fujisawa’s work evoke that same feeling of a well-loved, well handled piece of knitwear – something that you would want someone else to inherit.
Fujisawa’s output doesn’t end with her fixation on altering old Aran jumpers. A quick look at her past work and Instagram and her eye for magical colour combinations extends to nostalgia-tinted installations and limited edition accessories. In particular, Fujisawa has worked around the theme of Aurora (Borealis) to develop both art projects and fashion pieces, constructed out of diaphanous ombre chiffon that look either like the digital texture of Apple screen savers or all the nuanced colours of a sparkling sea or a vivid sunrise. For instance, she’ll dye the colours of a skirt and call it 4.00am, as she seeks to “confine the moment before the morning” in a garment. Or she’ll be inspired by the hues of vintage photography and try and colour her work in similar faded tones. She pits the man made against the natural world with deft observation and it makes for the sort of eye candy that you could see gracing countless curated Tumblrs and Instagram accounts.
Unfortunately, Fujisawa’s work, like most Japanese designers that I lust after, is stocked solely in Japan. Oh well, that’s what social media is for isn’t it? Indulging in the act of obsessively admiring from afar, sending hearts and likes, thousands of miles away.
SOURCE: Style Bubble – Read entire story here.