DRESSCAMP Spring/Summer 2006 - Hottest Ticket in Town

Rip up the rule books and move aside for the new enfant terrible of Japanese Fashion. Toshikazu Iwaya and his DRESSCAMP label exploded onto this year’s Tokyo Collection

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This was the hottest ticket in town and the tent took two hours to fill with Tokyo fashionistas and several well known socialites and celebrities. They were all in attendance to view the mischievous collection from the designer who is causing the fashion world to wake up and behold the new Japanese Alexander McQueen.

This extravaganza resembled a football arena rather than a catwalk show. It was crammed full and deafening and had all the atmosphere of a gladiatorial arena. This was an appropriate setting for a truly inspired haute couture show that redefined what fashion should be about.

Toshikazu Iwaya unveiled both a Women’s and Men’s collection entitled “Cowboys and Indians – Mata-Hari”. Indian headdresses, Hawaiian skirts, checked cowboy shirts and hulking studded black leather boots topped off with tiny red glittering hats led the Men’s show. Police and Pimp hats and rolled up tight denim jackets put the finishing touch to this phase and it could have been mistaken for a YMCA video. However this is what the DRESSCAMP label is all about – teasing glamour and outrageous exhibitionism.

The Men’s segment culminated in hooded boxing robes in red and black with long, thin black neck scarves. This air of machismo was settled with the male models parading down the catwalk in Popeye t-shirts.

The women’s collection seemed the stronger of the two and it was bulging with sensuous glamour and childish trickery. Shin Ya’s hair and Noboru Tomizawa’s make-up created an almost “Star Wars” feel to the show. White frills and incandescent yellow evening dresses mixed with wedding trains and plenty of layers influenced the opening phase.

Iwaya also introduced gingham skirts and Cleopatra gold blouses along with plenty of zebra stripes and intricate floral designs. 80s style “Flashdance” gym shorts and studded denim shorts along with grass-like dresses stood side by side blue pom-pom baby-dolls and wedding cake dresses. The collection closed with an exquisite tableaux-vivant of the models in Mata Hari – like poses and left the audience wondering how anyone can beat that.

DRESSCAMP lived up to its name and gave Japan Fashion Week a real injection of fun and enchantment. The Tokyo Collections can feel safe in the knowledge that Toshikazu Iwaya’s assured creations would not have looked out of place in any of this season’s European shows.

Paul McInnes About the Author

Paul McInnes is a fashion and arts journalist based in Tokyo. He is the menswear fashion editor of The Japan Times, the Tokyo editor of Sportswear International, contributes to High Fashion, Dazed Digital, and JC Report.

Recent articles by Paul McInnes:

Comment (日本語もOK)

Paul tells it well. This was great fun. I should have the photographs up soon!
Kjeld Duits
Nov 1, 2005 (6235 days ago)

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