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Curiosity Fig.6

​Creative Attire for Hybrid Living

Our original prints of hybrid plants and botanicals are hand-drawn and added to ornate garments, 

then finished using Japanese sustainable fabrics (WASHI and Manila Hemp) and hand-painting techniques. 


All prints depict ‘hybrid imported plants’ in which new flowers are mixed to create an atmosphere of mystery.

All the draft prints are hand-drawn and an illusion of distance is produced through rearranging 

and repositioning the flowers.  


In our work, we blend traditional styles with techniques such as fine print-making 

and draping to add an entirely new dimension to the appearance of clothes, both mentally and physically

KEIKO NISHIYAMAのオリジナルプリントは全て手書きで描かれた空想の植物によって構成されています。今季は’サステイナビリティ’持続可能な生地(和紙やマニラ麻、インドのチャンドリシルク)の生地を用いてデザインされ、着心地もソフトで環境にも優しいコレクションとなっています。

このコレクションのシルエットは全て、’エプロン’をテーマにしています。使用人と主婦の象徴であった、エプロンを通して私の国(日本)で見られる厳しいジェンダーの不平等に触発されています。 祖母も母も、自分のキャリアと家庭生活のバランスをとるのに常に苦労しなければなりませんでした。 今日の日本では、家族を作り、子供を産む女性は、やや多くの支援を受けています。それでも、先進国の中でジェンダー平等とワークライフバランスの基準が最も低い国です。 母の時代、女性が家族の面倒を見ながらキャリアを続けることは、とてもまれでした。当時、主婦はほとんどの場合、エプロンを着用すると予想されていました。しかし、21世紀になぜこれがまだ当てはまるのでしょうか。 エプロンは伝統的に使用人のシンボルであり、女性は家事の仕事に専念することが期待されています。 私はこのようなマインドの基準を変え、仕事と家庭生活のシンボルであるエプロンを’ハイブリッド化’したデザインのドレスをコレクションにしました。 エプロンを完全に捨てるのではなく、平等、勇気、不思議さを残した新しい時代を反映したコレクションです。

This collection is inspired by the stark gender inequalities seen in countries such as my own where the apron – which I want to rethink and reposition – has traditionally been a symbol of the servant and the housewife. 


My grandma as well as my mother always had to struggle to balance their careers and their home lives, causing much strife.


In today’s Japan, women who start families and bear children receive somewhat more support. Even so, our country still has the lowest standards of gender equality and work-life balance among developed countries.


In my mother's era, it was extremely rare for a woman to continue their careers while taking care of their family. That is why my mother was always busy, always rushing to work and coming back late. She prepared all our meals – breakfast and lunch in the morning, dinner late in the evening – in her work outfit, so I never saw her in room wear or fashionable clothes.


As a child, I found it strange my mom should wear her work attire in the kitchen. At the time, housewives were expected to don an apron most of the time. But in the 21st century, why should this still be the case?


The apron has traditionally been a symbol of the servant, and of women expected to devote themselves entirely to their household. 


I wish to change these standards of mind and imagine wonderful attires for women who have both a career and a family. It is time to hybridise the symbols of work and home life in creative, defiant ways. 


Rather than discarding the apron outright, let us re-adopt it into designs that reflect a new era of equality, courage and wonder.

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