Japan turns out some of the best menswear on earth. We see it, we wear it, we write about it and we love it unconditionally. But there's always tbhat barrier of entry of learning more about these brands through non-Google translate language. So many of these labels maintain an obscure online presence. But Mr. Porter highlighted five of the better known Japanese labels you already know and love: Blue Blue Japan, Beams Plus, White Mountaineering, Neighborhood and Remi Relief. Based on their responses, Tokyo is a more cerebral metropolis than we're used to. Some takeaways:
-Yosuke Aizawa of White Mountaineering really likes to eat skewered eel, goes snowboarding to find inspiration and, when he's at home, is typically dressed in pajamas. That's the type of dude I trust, even though I've never tried eel.
-Beams has more than 140 locations throughout Japan and is one of the most successful fashion companies in the country. Shinsuke Nakada of Beams Plus found inspiration in one of the least stylish cities in the U.S.: San Francisco. Which I obviously don't quite understand.
-Shisuke Takizawa of Neighborhood lives his brand to the fullest, riding his motorcycle to work everyday depending on the weather. Brand synergy off the fucking charts.
-Blue Blue Japan bases its garments on old Japan farm workwear and the repair of those pieces from the inside out. While the exterior of those older pieces can look plain, the inside might be filled with multiple materials and colors and gives BBJ tangible inspiration.
-Yutaka Goto of Remi Relief found that newer dye technologies are very durable, but older dyes fade with wear. So, Remi Relief took after the distinct look of sun-bathed '60s surf culture.