FOR the last decade or so, China has been the focus for many – if not all – luxury brands, leaving little attention for Japan. But that’s about to change.

According to figures consolidated by consulting firm Bain & Company, “the personal luxury goods market grew by 4% at current exchange rates, to €22 billion (SGD $38.6 billion), boosted by a currency-driven rally in the second half of the year and increased spending by Chinese travelers.”

Despite modest growth, Japan still holds the status as a top-tier luxury market for wholesale and high-end labels including Dior, Valentino, Louis Vuitton and Raf Simons with a growing appetite for luxury goods and fashion events that have yet to suffer the rapid decline in demand as in the West.

While the second largest luxury market in Asia is often an inspiration for many luxury brands, it’s becoming a popular playground for major luxury brands to stage high-profile global and regional shows.

This year alone, we have seen several major events from Dior to Calvin Klein, Gucci, Louis Vuitton (happening the first week of December) and most recently Valentino. The coveted Italian brand celebrated its Ginza Sixx store opening with a special presentation of its Pre-Fall 2019 collection, titled Valentino TKY.

Art Installation by Noh-mask Artist Ichiyu Terai

Valentino creative director Pierpaolo Piccioli transformed the Ginza store into an exhibition space where he combined the quality of Italian craftsmanship with Japanese traditional artistry in a series of installations and capsule collections. Here’s a peek at some of the installations and collaboration pieces.

Valentino Collaboration with Doublet

Valentino x Doublet

Winner of the 2018 LVMH Grand Prize. Masayuki Ino founded Japanese streetwear label Doublet in 2012. It offers total coordination from ready-to-wear to accessories under the concept of changing something familiar to unfamiliar as if you replace a part of basic and everyday items with fanciful ideas.

Capsule collection Valentino TKY

Valentino X Manga Characters Inspiration Collection 

Pierpaolo Piccioli selected five animals, taken from the late Sixties’ Haute Couture collections, and infused them with the vibrant and playfulness of the Japanese manga characters and turned into the protagonists of a playful project called Valentino TKY. The butterfly, the tiger, the dragon, the snake and the panther were re-designed with a manga attitude and re-thought as characters of an urban dream. Each of Valentino TKY animal has a peculiar personality, an individual style and a unique super power. The divertissement became a story and the story took life on a Japanese-inspired capsule collection made by female and male items, finely embellished with embroideries, prints and materials that combine streetstyle and couture attitude.

Special project gadgets for Ginza

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