We interviewed Maiko Kurogouchi on the source of her inspiration and the concept behind the Fall / Winter 2021 collection.
Can you share your thoughts on this season's colour palette and what you hope to express with the Fall / Winter 2021 collection?
A key component of this collaboration is that the colours are simple and easy to style. For the Fall / Winter collection, I imagined a colour palette based around warm grey tones that would enhance the pieces designed with cold weather in mind.
Did you focus on anything in particular, such as the material used, to create this line of winter pieces?
In the winter, we experience changes in temperature throughout the day – moving from the chilly outdoors to indoor heated rooms. We're also wearing layers and layers of clothing. With UNIQLO's AIRism cotton, we were able to create pieces that stay dry and comfortable all day. And, with leading 3D knit technology, we designed a smooth turtleneck sweater that hugs the body beautifully, adding just the right amount of volume. That was a wonderful experience.
The theme of this collaboration is the 'seamless transition between innerwear and clothes'. How is that theme expressed this season?
During the colder months, we layer our clothing and bundle up to stay warm. But once we enter a heated room, we find ourselves perspiring. My hope was to create a line of innerwear that can be worn under sweaters and cardigans, but also functions beautifully as clothing worn alone. My belief is that innerwear can be versatile, allowing for wider styling options. That is the aim of this collection, and what I mean when I say 'seamless transition'.
What was the greatest challenge when creating this season's collection?
The development of the turtleneck sweater took quite a bit of time. The turtleneck is a winter staple for me – and for many women, I imagine. My wish was to create a sweater that had the signature turtleneck shape, but with the use of UNIQLO's seamless 3D knit technology, we were able to add a little volume to the body and sleeves so it fits with more ease. I wanted to give the classic look a modern update, focusing on beauty and simplicity.
In line with the soft, elegant curves found in the natural world, my hope is to create clothes that enhance the delicate beauty of a women's body. It is with great pleasure that we're able to deliver this collection to women around the world.
The Spring / Summer collection was quite the debut. Can you share your thoughts on this collaboration with UNIQLO?
I feel very fortunate to be able to contribute to one of the most essential parts of a woman's wardrobe: her innerwear. With the hope of supporting and enhancing the everyday lives of women around the world, my wish is to continue making detailed updates and adjustments to further strengthen the collaboration.