Issey Miyake was born in Japan in 1938. He attended the Tama Art University in Japan, graduating in 1964. After school, he spent time in Paris and New York, working in the garment industry in order to further his practical education. He worked with such luminaries as Guy Laroche and Givenchy, both forward looking designers. Issey Miyake returned home and launched his own fashion label in 1970, making it the first clothing company to ever originate in Japan.
Within the past decade, Miyake has stepped back from the day to day operations of the line. He is focusing on fabric research, having turned over the women's and men's fashion lines to associate Naoki Takizawa. However, does keep oversight on all aspects of the fashion house. This ensures that his unique vision and style remains true to his ethos. Issey Miyake is constantly furthering the technology of fabric to benefit us all.
The clothing label can never be called boring. Throughout the years, the focus has been on bridging western and eastern influences. Origami shaping strongly informs the clothing line from season to season. Add into the mix unique fabrics such as ikats and nubby weaves. It makes for interesting visual texture. Ever one to push the limits of fashion, he brings all these dichotomies together and turns them into harmonious works of art.
Miyake is most famous for his Pleats Please line. The clothing is constructed then pleated to allow for maximum amount of movement. Another line that exemplifies the origami aspect is the Piece of Cloth line. A single piece of cloth, starting with a single thread, is shaped into a garment. Normal garment construction calls for cutting out different shapes out of cloth then sewn back together. Piece of Cloth is a complete departure from standard garment construction, making it unique in the fashion world.
Issey Miyake has stepped back from the clothing lines that gave him his fame. But his lines still move forward, both in technology and style, under his steady guiding hand.