It’s hip to be square

Marbbie Tagabucba - The Philippine Star
Itâs hip to be square
Nigo’s sophomore collection expounds on Americana influences with the preppy-meets-nautical elements of Japanese school uniforms.

MANILA, Philippines — The gigantic pennants at the Parisian high school Lycée Carno may say Class of ’23, but artistic director Nigo is deep in his studies of the archives of the house’s founder Kenzo Takada for his sophomore collection.

Nigo, however, is making his mark. All the denim is now sourced in Japan and produced according to his specifications. A swing skirt in the shape that made Takada a household name in Paris in the ’80s comes in unwashed denim. In another all-denim look, the fabric that made Americana is fashioned into gingham patches in different washes; another comes in hickory stripes and wabash, all tailored in that Nigo swagger. The pattern-on-pattern styling makes for a clash of distinct characters inspired by a 1980s show by Takada based on a sports day.

Symbolic of a lifelong quest for learning and travel, Nigo expounds his retro-preppy co-ed debut in January with nautical elements like the sailor collar and cap. It’s a combination embedded in Japanese fashion by way of school uniforms — this time for a French house and recontextualized by a Japanese designer. There’s even a sailor’s duffel in leopard-esque florals based on an archive design and a Japanese school backpack in blue. The school spirit for the French house carries on in varsity letter jackets with middy collars. The waistcoat makes a return covered in patches of Kenzo labels, including long-defunct ones like Kenzo Jeans and Jungle as well as reproductions of Takada-era graphic designs. Indeed, nothing is cooler than knowing your roots and flourishing from there.


Kenzo is at Greenbelt 3, Ayala Center, Makati.


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