By Andrew Shang
N. Hoolywood is growing up — that is, at least for one season. In an apparent 180-degree turn from fall’s homeless youth reference, where designer Daisuke Obana amped up a more-is-more style philosophy, the latest offering boasted a tone of quiet sophistication with a classic American undercurrent.
Obana, a Japanese native, was in the U.S. during last year’s contentious presidential election, which turned his mind to a journey through American history. He looked to John F. Kennedy, whose suave, debonair appearance has become a symbol of a happier, simpler America.
Preppy varsity references — from the bomber jackets and elongated cardigans to university lettering — were indicative of the Fifties.
Elsewhere, military references drew from JFK’s military career while a Marilyn Monroe print was a playful jab at his personal peccadillos. The overall tone was younger, balancing a collegiate spirit with clean, soft tailored silhouettes. “I wanted to put out something very simple, sleek, traditional and refined,” Obana said backstage.
Notable was the designer’s modern interpretation of traditional style. Loosening up classic suits with generous proportions was not only younger (and a big trend on the European runways), but gave way to greater layering potential and a notion of trans-seasonal dressing. Comfortable, professional, elevated — it appears the N. Hoolywood man is gearing up for a sartorial graduation into the working world — or the political one.