Classic Chitose Abe


September 4, 2014 | BY Charmaine Mok

Ahead of the launch of her latest exclusive collection for Lane Crawford, Chitose Abe speaks to us about finding inspiration in daily life

Hong Kong Tatler: Your latest collection draws upon the notion of New Classics. What are your own personal wardrobe classics that you would take with you to the end of the world?
Chitose Abe: I would take a biker jacket with me to the end of the world.

HKT: Navy Blue is the shade that defines sacai “THE” composition. What is it about this colour that attracts you, and what is the significance?
CA: Navy has always been an important color in the Sacai collection and I have included it in every collection starting from my very first.  It is a colour that brings everything together to make the collection more complete.  For this collection, I took many of my favorite styles over the past few years and introduced them in navy.

HKT: Tell us about what has been inspiring you recently?
CA: My inspiration always comes from my daily life in Tokyo. A slight sense of discomfort of life in this city inspires me. Tokyo is a unique place where new ideas and culture are always created with a mixture of races and backgrounds. I believe that sacai can only be created because I live and design in Tokyo.

HKT: You often say you are affected by simple, even mundane things in everyday life, so tell us about a design that sprang from something rather unexpected.
CA: There isn’t anything specific that influences me, but the essence of sacai is to create something new with design that has an unexpected mix of classic items and familiar silhouettes. By using universal items like knitted cardigans, shirts or jackets as a base, and then combining different fabrics and textures, adding elements of elegance and modernism, sacai translates these items to express a new classic style.

HKT : Talk us through a typical day in your life – what would you have for breakfast, where would you go for design inspiration, who would you see and what would you be doing?
CA: In the morning, I make a lunchbox for my daughter and then have a cup of coffee.  There is a day that I speak to patterners or design team to work on creations. There is a day that I work on business operations as an owner.

Every other day, either my husband or I look after our daughter. I treasure the time with her when I am home. When I am not home early, I am still working or sometimes having dinner with friends.

HKT: What are your favourite things to juxtapose in your designs?
CA: It is hard for me to choose just one, as my collection as a whole I think are my favourites. It gives me joy when I find something new and valuable from new designs by creating something new with a mix of classic items and familiar silhouettes.

HKT: Tell us more about your passions outside of fashion – what foods do you enjoy, what music moves you, what films have made you stop and think?
CA: My main passion outside fashion is watching my daughter’s growth.

HKT: Is there anything else about yourself that you wish people knew?
CA: I wish people would know more about the brand sacai and to touch and feel the collection, rather than myself.


Chitose Abe's sacai "THE" composition launches at Lane Crawford and on September 4, 2014