One of Japan’s most well-known fashion designers, Tsumori Chisato was born in the city of Saitama in 1954. Following her studies at the famous Bunka School of Fashion in Tokyo (the training ground of so many of Japan’s greatest designers), she worked as Chief Designer for Issey Sports, where she was able to work with, and learn from the hugely influential Issey Miyake.
With his blessing, in 1990 Chisato decided the time was right to strike out on her own and launch her own label, which she did, her self-titled collection debuting at the Japan Fashion Week in Tokyo to much critical acclaim. Since this successful debut, Chisato has grown the brand internationally, with her designs being available in her own boutiques and designer outlets and department stores across Asia, Europe and the United States of America.
Chisato’s success is purely down to her hard-work and talent. Her signature style is one of unadulterated femininity, her technical prowess and attention to detail with the intricacies of her designs combining well with the broad sweeps of colour, the luxurious fabrics and the indulgent prints. There is also a healthy dose of cuteness within Chisato’s designs, heavily influenced by manga and the emerging Japanese boho-chic. This has led to a number of awards, including the prestigious Mainichi Fashion Award, a well deserved win that recognised not just her popularity, but her innovativeness.
Although perhaps considered one of the ‘elder statespersons’ of the Japanese fashion scene, Natsumi’s continual innovation and articulation of the evolving Japanese fashion scene has seen her continually wow not just Japan, but catwalks and audiences in Europe, Asia and the United States of America, and this looks set to continue for a long time to come.