Issey Miyake, the pleated in the air of time

by Eva SP on / EVA SP

Issey Miyake did not invent the pleated. The Egyptian tunic, the Greek chiton, the strawberry of the wars of Religion, the Fortuny pleated at the beginning of the twentieth century and then that of Mrs. Grès have, long before his own, marked the history of costume and sewing. But he was the first to have moved it into the field of industrial design and translated it into a concept of easy, washable, universal garments.

The birth of Pleats Please has been told many times. “In the early 1990s, a French friend who had seen our first wrinkles, noticed that they would be perfect for dance, confided a few months ago to the Figaro, Issey Miyake. I then asked William Forsythe and the dancers of the Frankfurt Ballet to test the pleats. The dancers with very varied morphologies expressed themselves with pleasure and with such freedom of movement. It aroused in me the desire that everyone discovered this sensation. “Object design is then omnipresent, in toothbrushes, appliances, trendy coffees and supermarkets. Sensitized to discipline, the general public is interested in the specificity of these new clothes completely cut and assembled before being folded.

Above all, women, far beyond the circle of the trendy, appropriate their models that slide over the body and rebound at each movement, which roll in a suitcase and come out without false creases. In France, the name Miyake joins, thanks to Pleats Please and the perfume L’Eau d’Issey launched in 1992, the club of popular designers (Lacroix, Gaultier, Kenzo). “I have a provincial fashion culture,” says Johanna Senyk, 35, and founder of Wanda Nylon. So that the reputation of a stylist reaches Tours, where I grew up, it was really necessary that his pieces are iconic, that he is for example the guest of the season of La Redoute! And often, it corresponded to a stereotype of woman, we put the creators in small boxes. For me, Pleats Please, it was the notable wife’s dress … And then, two years ago, my fiance gave me one of those vintage pleated dresses, found at the Los Angeles store The Way We Wore . A crazy piece, with almost clownish proportions, which I wear often and each time in a different way. “More or less consciously, this dress plunges it back into the pleated which will become one of the themes of its spring-summer. The technique, which is both artisanal and experimental, has nothing to do with that of the Japanese (in the case of an experimental series): here, the ankle-knotted trousers, the asymmetrical tops, the tube-dresses are doubled in places with tarlatan, Laser cut and resilient bias. But there is something in aesthetics, in the attitude Wanda Nylon, terribly Miyake. As in the collections of Jil Sander, Marni, Paul Smith …

 

And why would it be surprising that stylists reinterpret this now classic? Because since its golden age in the 1990s, the Pleats Please remained the “uniform” of the first clients. Who, since, have grown old. Logically, the next generation saw an old-fashioned product and often, as the experience of Johanna Senyk illustrates, the dress of a notable woman or that of the architect with square glasses. Those under 30-35 do not share the same prejudices. This is evidenced by the success in the fast fashion stores, in recent months, of “inspired” shortened pleated pants. A young girl who knows the trends, met on the Parisian subway, says she found hers at H & M: “I dreamed of a Pleats Please, but I did not have the means. Obviously, this one is not of the same quality, and the pleated already begins to fade, “she laughed.

 

Sold between 190 and 230 euros, the original (with memory form whatever the number of washes at 30 ° C machine!) Has become a statement of style spotted during the latest Fashion Weeks. If in Paris, the two shops of the Japanese label still retain their followers, they have also recruited for a few months young women, French but above all foreign, in search of the most basic pieces, black or white. Same thing at matchesfashion.com: “We have been selling Pleats Please for two years, and a little more every season,” says Ruth Chapman, the founder and co-chair of the UK website. These products are still aimed at an educated client who maintains a relationship with art and fashion. “And at the Galeries Lafayette, boulevard Haussmann, Paris:” The current collections have new shapes and beautiful prints. We have seen a good increase since last month on the stand, and besides the loyal clientele, a share of thirty, mainly from Asia and the Middle East, says Pascale Camart, director of purchases women’s ready-to-wear. Even in our teams, sharp young women have re-interested in this Japanese line, but especially through its iconic three-hole black dress. “A must for design and cool that resonates with the envy of a singular garment, Wear with running sneakers, heels or Birkenstock.

“I designed Pleats Please on a technical and engineering basis, but at the same time I wanted to create a garment that makes people free and happy,” Issey Miyake said today. And when asked about the many pleats on the catwalk, he responds, faithful to himself: “Pleats Please is for everyone, this is my gift, my inheritance. And if other creators are inspired by it, I feel honored and happy. That is a great compliment. ”

 

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