Over the last few months I have heard murmuring of a new label that I was told I would love. On a number of different occasions both friends and colleagues excitedly mentioned the launch of Mitsu. As the debut offering lands in LN-CC, I share their excitement and happily introduce the brand to you.
Mitsuhiro Kokita graduated from Central Saint Martins with an MA in Menswear in 2004 and has since honed his design talent through working with the likes of Untitled Men, Ginza Ichibankan and most recently Comme des Garcons. Now, whilst working as a lecturer at Seian University of Art and Design he has launched his eponymous line, Mitsu. Here, he plays with dualities. It strives to blur distinctions of old and new, natural and synthetic, classic and modern. Before we learn more about the label itself, let me share a few of the first product shots with you...
Product shots courtesy of LN-CC
The starting point was a simple tie dyed Rock t shirt. With the help of a dying factory, Kokita experimented with various techniques of bleaching nylon and synthetics. During this period of tie dyeing trial and error, the design talent looked to reimagine familiar classics of menswear. Through the dying of synthetics and the enlargement of iconic detailing, Kokita breathes fresh life in to the trench coat, the pea coat, the hunting jacket and the rain cloak.
To mark the release of the first few products, we caught up with Mitsuhiro Kokita to learn more about the label and the man behind it all. Here we discuss the roots of Mitsu, his desire to create something new and his hopes for the future...
SS: What were your inspirations, your dreams and the driving catalyst behind launching Mitsu?
Mitsu: Basically, I want to create things which excite people in the same way that I was excited by all fashion things since high school. Something which makes your life well is what I want to create. I still do not know how to make it under good balances. I do not know is it possible or not but I'll try. It is difficult to explain my inspirations, dream and etc. because I am still struggling with them. I love fashion and I just want to make fashion in my own way.
SS: Aside from it being your name, what does Mitsu mean to you?
Mitsu: I hope that someday MITSU will remind people of my clothes rather than myself.
SS: The starting point for the collection was the tie dye rock t shirt. How did the collection evolve out of this single garment?
Mitsu: The tie dye rock t shirt is made of cotton, a natural material and it is the inner garment. I wished to experiment with just tie dyed outer garment which are made of synthetic material. I am a bit perverse.
SS: Could you talk us through the process you devised for tie dying the synthetics?
Mitsu: I did not devise it. I just discovered it. It is just the result of a great deal of experimentation and with the informed help of the dying factory.
SS: The collection reimagines menswear classics and breathes fresh life in to vintage garments. Is there a moment or era of style that you are particularly drawn to?
Mitsu: The reason I am drawn to the classics is because that synthetic materials are not classic material. Synthetic material reminds me of sportswear. I just put the sport image to classics and vice versa. There is not a particular era, but I love photos. Like Yamamoto and many others, I just loves August Sander’s photos.
SS: Your design aesthetic is predominantly focused on the detail. What are the details that you wish more men gave more thought to?
Mitsu: I hope you get an atmosphere through details. Detail is detail. Detail is a very important aspect, though.
SS: What excites you about the future of menswear?
Mitsu: Menswear has some many rules. I would like to create a new rule.
SS: Finally, what's next for Mitsu? How would you like to see the label evolve over the coming seasons?
Mitsu: I just started my own brand. So now it’s a time to create a good infrastructure of the brand. I want to create an epoch –making design, but before that, I want to produce good products and continue my brand. If I continue my brand, someday I create what I want and also you want. I am doing things again and again until the day.