Japanese fashion is becoming a leading one on the world fashion scene. With the influence and the ability to create extraordinary designs and see new perspectives, the Japanese have once again proved that they are one of the most creative nations in the world. For a long time, Japanese fashion did follow the world fashion trends that were set by the European and US fashion capitals. However, over the past few years, this trend completely changed, making the Japanese fashion and trends pioneers in the novelties and setting the bar even higher than before.
These changes do not simply apply to regular fashion trends and styles. This is the case with streetwear and aesthetic fashion styles too. In those terms, the novelty that is combining all of the modern with the dose of traditional Japanese fashion is the collaboration between Tokkou and 4649.
Tokkou is a very well-known Japanese fashion house that specializes in luxury fashion but holds traditional Japanese roots at its core. What makes it truly outstanding and original are the cutting-edge designs that are inspired by the youth subculture called Bousou-zoku. For those who are not familiar with this name, it is a style that was run by juvenile delinquents in the early 1970s.
Seeing the popularity and the demand of this style, as something fresh and new on the modern fashion scene, Tokkou has partnered up with Yoroshiku for a collaboration that will bring out the best of this past style and incorporate it in the modern fashion styles today.
For this collaboration, both the designers from Tokkou and Yoroshiku have expressed their vision and the idea behind it, which resulted in a pretty unique collaboration. Tokkou x 4649 Collaboration is Warugaki. For most of the world, this might sound just like some Japanese name. But, it is more than that. Namely, as Yumi, the 4649 designer explained, the literal translation of the word is “Bad Boy”. Waru means “bad” and Gaki is slang for “kid”. Gaki also means “evil” which is reflected in the artwork of the design itself, through the child/demon split face. On the other hand, the meaning of the collaboration is quite interesting if you take into consideration the style of the juvenile delinquents that were the primary creative initiative.
The idea behind Warugaki
As Yumi, the designer of 4649 explains, this is a collaboration that presents the mixture of the east hip hop and Japanese Bousou-zoku. As a brand, Yoroshiku is deeply influenced by the hip-hop culture and lifestyle, while Tokkou is a brand that is coming directly from Bousou-zoku as a subculture. By Hide, the Tokkou designer, Masa as the owner of 4649, has been supporting the children’s charities for a long time, which the Tokkou sympathizes with. Yumi adds that this mixture of motorcycle enthusiasts with the hip hop fields and was the main inspiration for this collaboration. The focus was on 90’s bad boy records and the Ruff Ryder movement.
The design features
From a first look, you can notice the combination of the attitudes and the aesthetic of both brands. The main idea however was keeping the Japanese roots at the core. Another important detail for the design was the pandemic situation. Namely, as Hide, the designer of Tokkou explains, both the brands felt the results of Covid-19 on their economy and needed to create an image of rebirth from that collapse.
Working in the time of a pandemic and collaborating for that matter is a challenge itself. However, both Yumi and Hide shared that they had pretty fun and interesting moments. Working together on the ideas, sharing the creative inspiration, and supporting each other was maybe the biggest thing that they will remember forever in their mutual collaboration. Their work is shared by donating a percentage of the sales to mental health charity Mind.
The customers behind the Tokkou x 4649 collaboration
This is a collaboration that reaches wider audiences and the ones that appreciate Japanese culture, aesthetics, and authenticity. The target audience remains the same, however, the focus is more on the younger people who are encouraged to wear this collection. The sizes are looser, which clearly shows the adaption of Tokkou through the Yoroshiku brand.
Sustainability today is an important part of one’s brand’s success and contribution to the world and the environment. With that in mind, this collaboration was done with the use of utilized surplus fabrics and garments from past productions. With that, both the brands have given their contribution to sustainability which will continue to be the main and most important part of the production and the sales process.
Through their creative and designing process, the designers share the hope that the consumers and the customers will enjoy this collection as much as they did. They hope they will feel a little brighter and different than before, and additionally, with each sale, help and support the children from disadvantaged backgrounds.