When considering the Big Three Japanese designers–Rei Kawakubo, Yohji Yamamoto and Issey Miyake–it’s easy to define the designs of Comme des Garçons and Yohji with empty, generalized adjectives: avant-garde, introverted, shapeless, angry, black, deconstructed, etc. This not only neglects the intricate variety offered by both brands, but also serves as a somewhat unspecific descriptor of their early output. Though Kawkubo and Yamamoto are Miyake’s contemporaries, his label took a much different path to success.

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