2011 is shaping up to be a landmark year for Yohji Yamamoto, with a retrospective at the V&A currently wowing the critics (and what promises to be a memorable catwalk show for the museum’s Fashion in Motion series next month)

And there was a delicate sense of nostalgia in the air at his Paris showroom today, with a collection that superficially tapped into his distinctively fluid, worn aesthetic, but which – as the show progresses – seemed to be increasingly about memories. Soft, washed out prints – pinstripes, subdued florals, and mottled geometrics – alternated with bleak, vintage-toned military jackets which sprouted extra lapels like sculpted shadows. 

But there was an intriguing ambiguity at work too, with super-wide trousers and chaps slashed to reveal delicately-patterned, colourful underlayers – like a reversed kimono – and long hair swept into elegantly formal chignons and high pony-tails.

The overriding sense was that of a designer exploring the disintegration of the classic male uniform, cutting and layering to create garments which managed to feel defiantly traditional and quietly subversive all at once.

Oh, and they played a Japanese cover version of Madonna’s “La Isla Bonita” at the end. Which made my day . . . 

Images courtesy of

Posted by: John-Michael O'Sullivan


The magazine that showcases new emerging
fashion talent alongside the established.

Sign up below to be kept informed of all our new issues, the trends that are emerging, exclusive fashion films, and the very latest discoveries in fashion & the arts.

You will also be the first to hear about unique competitions and all Fashion156's developments.

I agree to the terms and conditions