For the first time in Comme des Garçons' history, fashion designer Rei Kawakubo – the mastermind behind both the label and Dover Street Market concept stores – has created a fine jewellery capsule collection using Mikimoto pearls.
The collection represents the first stage of a two-year partnership between the two brands and aims at blending Kawakubo’s avant-garde approach with the heritage of 150-year-old Mikimoto. “Pearls line up alongside diamonds in terms of value, myriad stories spring to mind concerning pearls,” explained Kawakubo in an official statement from the brand. “If we talk about women’s jewellery, one usually thinks of pearls. Recently, I’ve noticed how men also look good when they wear pearls.”
That is, in a nutshell, the starting point of the whole collection – one designed to be worn by all, regardless of age or gender. “A traditional company such as Mikimoto, with a 150-year-old history, clashing with a breaking of the rules can lead to something new,” added the designer. Although it refrains a little from design, the whole project was an exercise in creation: the chance of making something that looks good and emphasises the beauty of the pearl itself, something that serves as a rejection of the current gratuitous logo-adding way of collaborating.
Mikimoto’s founder, Kokichi Mikimoto, is known for creating the world’s first cultured pearls and for introducing an entirely new culture with a dream to adorn the necks of all women around the world with pearls. When the vision for the collaboration turned out to be new ways to decorate men in pearls, the Japanese jewellery brand saw it as an opportunity to generate new trends. “In an era when preexisting values are rapidly evolving, we hope to further promote the beauty and potential of pearls through this collaboration,” they explained.
After previewing at Couture Week in Paris today, the collection will be available from mid-February in Comme des Garçons and Dover Street Market stores around the world, as well as two Mikimoto flagship stores in Ginza, Tokyo.