Friday 19th March

| BY Claudia Croft

Junya Watanabe: Ready-to-wear AW21

Soo Catwoman is in the air. Iris Law is playing her in Danny Boyle’s upcoming Sex Pistols movie and her iconic swooping eyeliner and cat-eared buzz cut haunted the Junya Watanabe AW21 catwalk. Staged in a Tokyo concert venue that has lain empty through the pandemic, his show was dedicated to the “Immortal rock spirit”.

Watanabe believes there are three sacred totems of that rebellious rock spirit: Versace, Levi’s 501 and band T-shirts. In a trailblazing collaboration, he patchworked Versace’s signature baroque prints onto mod parkas and nylon bombers, or twisted them into toga-style dresses for pieces that will be sold by both designer houses. He also partnered with Levi’s, remaking and transforming 501s from specific, vintage years: 1937, 1947, 1966 and 1976.

He cleverly moshed the jeans onto other outfits so they looked like partially unearthed fashion fossils. Finally, he garnished the look with band T-shirts, reproducing tour merch from AC/DC, Def Leopard, Sex Pistols, Kiss and more. Every piece felt rare, covetable and unique – especially the coats. At this stage in the Covid saga, there’s a sense that conventional thinking won’t save us. We could all do with channelling some F**k You defiance. Junya’s seriously cult and collectable mash-ups tap into that energy.

Photography courtesy of  Junya Watanabe.