Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake

Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake

Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. AW20 Multi-coloured connected knits.
Issey Miyake, AW20, Paris.

The Issey Miyake Autumn-Winter 2020 collection led by designer Satoshi Kondo, was made up of a series of smaller stories. These stories explored the “words and feelings derived naturally from the process of making things by hand” as a series of mini-collections with interconnected details.

Overall, this resulted in a collection of quite disparate elements and on the surface, you can’t quite picture how some of the looks will live comfortably on a rack side-by-side with each other. However, you can imagine how these different stories of clothes are used by brands as drops of clothes over the course of a season, carefully merchandised to overlap and complement each other in stores. And in a construction sense, you can see how elements echo across the collection and build on the central theme, in this case, the idea of making by hand.

A selection of the different stories have been shown here to give you a sense of the variety of ideas, and the way the construction elements cross-pollinate between garments, and indeed build on previous collections and the A-POC ethos (A Piece of Cloth).

Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Graphic outlines in monochrome pieces define the silhouette.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Black and white pieces with black accents such as buttons and pocket outlines.
Frame A-POC pieces from Issey Miyake, AW20.

A series of graphic looks utilised the A-POC system so that when flat they are playfully outlined and delineated by wide black stripes. When on the body, these stripes outline the shape of the body or highlight garment details such as pockets and collars. The use of black buttons also adds a nice graphic touch, where the geometry of the circles complements the stripes.

Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Double layered garment loops back, with facing visible on bottom layer.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Double layers allow for two variations of collar shapes.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Collar on bottom layer cut as straight band.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Minimal pieces in soft grey highlight the shapes of the double layered garments AW20.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Double layered garments from AW20 can also be worn with top layer tied around the waist.
Shadowing pieces from Issey Miyake, AW20.

Another series of pieces centres on the concept of garments that are comprised of double layers that loop back on themselves. The bottom and top layers often feature separate collar and neckline styles to give the appearance of multiple layers of garments worn together in the same fabrication.

Note that in some cases, the bottom garment layer is finished with a centre front facing, so the facing finishes the front edge and is visible on the garment, rather than being hidden on the inside of the garment out of view. As the bottom layer doubles back on itself, this facing is then also doubled back on itself to be hidden from view on the top/outer layer of the garment.

Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Multiple blocks of knits, knit together in one single run. AW20.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Multiple blocks of knits, arranged in alternate directions.
Kone Kone pieces from Issey Miyake, AW20.

Another series was inspired by the idea of multiple blocks of clay smushed together, resulting in a variety of knits arranged in different directions but that were knit in a single run. This creates tension between the different pieces as the ribs of the knit areas stretch and compress against each other, sometimes resulting in bouncy 3D forms and wavy hems.

Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Red puffer jacket AW20, with closure set in from the outside edge.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Black puffer pieces with splits at knees. AW20.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Trousers with vertical front splits held together with button closure at ankles.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Muted colour palette with classic A-POC detailing.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Fringed texture exploded out as fur.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. All in one pleated jumpsuit, AW20.

A variety of other ideas and pieces were also interspersed through the collection, often building on existing Issey Miyake brand tropes of cut-outs, pleating, A-POC detailing and unusual pattern cutting.

The culmination of the collection was in a series of interconnected knits that were knit as a single continuous run and could be worn by multiple people at the same time. These varied from soft, tonal pieces in neutral colours, to vibrant colour blocking.

Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Hand in Hand interconnected knits from AW20.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Extra slits in knit pieces, AW20.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Shawls and sleeves link to other wearers.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Extra cutouts for armholes so garments can be worn multiple ways, AW20.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Doubled knits for two people, AW20.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Vibrant colour blocking knits in yellow, pink and blue.
Connected Knits and Layering at Issey Miyake | The Cutting Class. Vibrant colour blocking knits in turquoise, pink, orange and blue, AW20.
Hand in Hand pieces from Issey Miyake, AW20.

The Issey Miyake collection description explains this Hand in Hand series as:

Made with a seamless knitting technique, this series conveys the idea of connecting people to people, people to world, and people to the future, in a playful, continuous knit. The pieces in this series have additional openings designed with the intent to be worn in many different ways.

These pieces feature extra armhole cutouts at the underarms to allow the sleeves to be worn loose, and additional slits above the ribs at the wrists. Shawls from one garment link to the garment of a neighbour, and other pieces are designed to be worn for two. While in this finale context the extra openings facilitate the interlinked sleeves and garments by looping from one wearer to the next, as production-ready garments, these openings will still allow for the wearer to playfully arrange the garments in multiple ways. Considering that other pieces in the collection feature garments that are doubled up on themselves, you wonder if the final retail-ready production pieces (such as the knits for two people) will actually also be able to be doubled and worn as multiple layers on the one body.

Images of Issey Miyake Autumn-Winter 2020 from IsseyMiyake.comĀ»

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