DESIGNER SPOTLIGHT | CHISTOSE ABE FOR SACAI
Chistose Abe, Founder & Creative Director of Sacai
Established by Chitose Abe in 1999, Sacai connotes themes of femininity displayed through garments that are timeless, yet experimental. From the urban athletic style to the delicate drapes of fine fabrics, the collections reflect influences from daily life and observations of surroundings. The result is a collection of items that can transition easily between various occasions and isn’t only reserved for special opportunities.
Born in 1965 in Nayoga, Japan, Chistose Abe knew she wanted to be a designer by the age of 11. She began her career at World Co Ltd in Japan and later moved on to Comme Des Garcons, where she worked as a pattern cutter until 1997. Abe decided she wanted to break the boundaries of the ‘dressed-down’ style of the everyday woman and create something unconventional yet elegant. The designer started hand-knitting small samples and fusing together a T-shirts and a sweaters resulting in her first Sacai collection in 1999. Chistose Abe quickly became known for taking basic clothing items and merging them with conflicting fabrics to create beautiful hybrid combinations that work with every style. The designer now owns the three popular labels; Sacai, Sacai Luck and Sacai Man.
The brand’s name ‘Sacai’ was taken from Abe’s maiden name ‘Sakai.’ In order to separate her personal life from her design identity she replaced the ‘K’ with a ‘C.’ In her work, Abe never fails to demonstrates her innovative interest in creativity by contrasting textures, unexpected silhouettes and alternative shapes that fall beautifully on the female frame.
Sacai’s Pre-Fall 2016 collection once again demonstrates the distinctive elegance mixed with the eccentric once again; bell sleeved trenches matched with buckle-strapped flares along with over-sized patchwork parkas and back-to-front puffer anoraks. A sporty vibe can be seen within the lace dresses which also imply a cultural cross-over with the mix of vibrant red’s and pink’s. The sudden use of denim has blended well within the collection adding an offbeat touch with raw edges and frayed hems.
Words by: Sophie Wickington