Kolor Menswear Spring/Summer 2021 Paris

Juniche Abe said that here he was trying to revive the “elegance, snob, simple, decadent” mood he enjoyed conjuring for a collection back in 2011, but with an altered aesthetic recalibrated for now. If those four elements might seem mutually exclusive, well, not for this designer. His wearable collages use highly technical practice to combine an eclectic abundance of template garments into finished products of great complexity and impact.

Junichi Abe sent classics on a spin, layering child-sized clothing on loose, grown-up silhouettes.

Here Yusuke Tanaka’s dizzying film presentation, a stop-motion taken by 26 iPhones that accelerated or slowed according to the tempo of Kikagaku Moyo’s Smoke and Mirrors, shows that complexity from every angle (and features a great cameo at 5:30).

In an email Abe said he had been especially smitten by the altered drape actioned by inserting undersized garments within generous ones; micro-dosed examples include looks one and six. He added that the effects of the lockdown have left him musing on many notions, including: “Is there any way we can show much more detailed images or feel of fabrics online?”

Certainly it’s frustrating when looking at garments such as his virtually, unable to take them from the rail, turn them inside out and work out what has been combined, where and how, as we do during the usual frazzled Paris appointment. Yet there were different elements to enjoy here: the psychedelia of the music reflected the psychedelia of the clothes, all chaos theory collisions that stretch wearable logic while retaining it, wantably.

Layering was the focus. A kid’s silver windbreaker was thrown over a similar coat, but for adults, in bright orange with purple cuffs. An adult-sized bomber jacket, with a Kolor logo pattern, was layered over an enlarged bomber jacket of the same material. Other looks paired polo shirts and cardigans that were spliced together with flared trousers — new this season for women.

Women’s skirts were long and layered; one had a spray of tulle across the bottom; another a panel of pleated organza attached to the side — red and turquoise. The latter was paired with a shirt that had Con-Crete written across the chest, in a font that resembled the Coca-Cola logo. 

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With his compelling explorations, the designer continues to push the classics into new territory. It’s traditionally worked the other way, but maybe parents should start raiding their children’s closets.

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