[TOKYO, JAPAN] Elevated knitting is a specialised technique that Ryota Murakami has utilised effortlessly to take his Tokyo-based brand Pillings to higher heights. About 18 months ago Murakami won the 7th annual TOKYO FASHION AWARD which provided the opportunity for his business to participate at Paris Fashion Week in both March and September of last year, 2022. On the cusp of the pandemic a few needed changes took place where Murakami included his mother into the mix of designing for the brand and changed it from being an eponymous label to giving it a name that aligns more with his aesthetic.
Finding the light at the end of the tunnel was mainly the refreshing message about this collection. As in find your happiness and feel secure in yourself through taking what used to bring you anxiety and reclaim that angst by building upon those insecurities. Backstage Murakami mentioned the starting point for this season was revisiting a time when his mother sent him to grammar school in a jumper that she knitted herself. Of course other kids found it easy to make fun of him for showing up to school in it but now that specific past memory allowed him to transfer all his emotions into this beautiful presentation.
Out of the 22 looks shown there were 12 looks in total that had the models wearing a knitted sweater that had unusual pocket placements. The pockets were so misplaced that is seemed at first glance that the jumpers were inspired by straight jackets similar to those in psych institutions. However in actuality Murakami had intention to have the models appear to be hugging themselves in a protective state away from anxiety.
Continuing from the musically inclined theme or the upside-down piano displayed on the runway from last season, Murakami incorporated music sheet notes onto a crop top vest this season along with pigeons on one garment and butterfly/moths onto a few other pieces. Throughout the collection you’ll find only two dresses but the rest of the garments had a wide legged pant. With the lack of accessories Murakami made up for it with his intricate way of knitting which created a niche specific brand that knows no limits in being an unconventional designer who is ready to explore new methods.