A model displays a creation designed by Yu Amatsu during the 2017 Spring/Summer Collection at the Tokyo Fashion Week in Tokyo on Oct 18. (AP) (Photo:blue formal dresses)

It’s raining kimonos in Tokyo. US-based Japanese heavy-metal superstar Yoshiki kicked off Japan Fashion Week by sending models down the runway in sexy, reimagined kimonos drenched in a downpour Monday.

It may not be high fashion to purists, but such is the fame of the dyed-blonde, androgynous-looking co-founder of rock band X Japan that he opened the latest edition of Tokyo’s twice-yearly style bonanza.

Music fans, the Japanese celebrity press and the fashion pack crammed into a catwalk show that opened with a flamboyantly dressed Yoshiki seated at his trademark transparent baby grand for a classical-inspired duet with a female electric violinist in black stilettos.

To pondering chords on the piano, models dressed in Yoshiki’s collection of traditional style kimonos — albeit crafted in red leather to mimic snake skin or metallic golds and silver — sashayed, or even shuffled, down the runway.

Bolts of lightening flashed overhead and storm sound effects crashed over the sound system as black curtains parted in the middle of the catwalk to reveal Yoshiki standing over a drum set.

He carefully removed his overcoat, then powered through a high-energy drum solo as Western models appeared in strapless, kimono-inspired cocktail dresses that grazed the thigh in chessboard black and white, zebra print with a dalmatian-print flourish, or pink and red florals.


Rain poured down from the ceiling as models with crimped hair stuck in serpent-like strands gingerly navigated the soaking runway in vertiginous stilettos.

Yoshiki played drenched to the skin in a pussy bow blouse.

The climatic look was a transparent plastic kimono that left little to the imagination — exposing the model’s body and saving her blushes only with a patterned micro, under-garment at the waist.

The rain, Yoshiki explained to reporters, was inspired by Alexander McQueen, the late British designer considered one of the greats of his generation, who soaked his own runway in 1998.

A musician who transcends both the rock and classical worlds, and was raised by parents in the kimono business, Yoshiki said his passion was to open the eyes of the world to the traditional Japanese garment.

“After I moved to Los Angeles 20 years ago, I really understood the importance of Japanese culture,” he explained.

“If I’d stayed in Japan, I wouldn’t have realised there are so many Japanese restaurants around the world. I think that is really good, and I want kimono culture to be same as Japanese food.”

The music that accompanied the show, he said, was pure improvisation — so busy had he been with a music festival until recently.

“When I played, I focused on the kimono as having the main role,” he said, his blonde hair falling in soft waves around his face, lips accentuated in pink lipstick.

It was the musician’s second kimono airing at Japan Fashion Week following his debut last October, also showcasing body-hugging kimonos, also slashed to miniskirt-length and worn with stilettos.

Kimonos for men and children are his next dream, he said.

Sponsored by online retailer Amazon this season, Tokyo Fashion Week is in its 12th year. Between Monday and Saturday it will showcase around 50 up-and-coming designers with established brands.

It attracts 50,000 visitors to the Japanese capital each season.

Japanese rock star and fashion designer Yoshiki kicked off the week-long Amazon Fashion Week Tokyo on Monday, taking to the stage to perform music as models strutted by on the runway in his futuristic kimono creations.


Yoshiki, co-founder and drummer of rock band X Japan, played the piano and drums during the show for his brand Yoshikimono, which presented kimonos in metallic colours and leather in a modern twist to the traditional garment.

Models also wore printed strapless dresses and see-through plastic tops.

“The entire kimono industry has been in crisis,” Yoshiki, whose family ran a kimono shop, said. “Despite pros and cons (to) my approach, I think Yoshikimono is meaningful in terms of awakening interest (in kimonos).”

Other labels showcasing their spring/summer 2017 collections included ACUOD BY CHANU, with designer Chanwoo Lee unveiling black and white layered outfits, accessorised with face masks.

Amazon Fashion Week Tokyo runs until Sunday.


PARIS: Fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld announced Monday he planned to launch his own branded hotel chain, with the first property set to open in the Chinese gambling hub of Macau in 2018.

The 83-year-old German-born designer has already collaborated with luxury Parisian address Le Crillon and the Metropole in Monaco, but the new business will see him and his company design entire hotels.

Leading fashion houses from Dior to Diane von Furstenberg have developed a lucrative side-business away from the catwalk by designing suites and other interiors for hotel owners.

Lagerfeld intends to follow the example of rivals such as Armani, Bulgari and Versace which have gone one step further and opened properties under their own names.

His first hotel is being built with a local partner in the luxury Lisboa Palace Complex in Macau, but the Lagerfeld group is “in the process of studying other opportunities to open other properties around the world,” it said in a statement.

NEW YORK: Kim Kardashian West is “taking some much needed time off” from sharing on her phone app after she was held up at gunpoint in Paris, according to a handwritten noted posted in the app Monday by an assistant.

“But not to worry,” wrote “Steph Shep,” the nickname for Kim assistant Stephanie Sheppard. “We’ve called upon Kims (sic) closest friends, fam & yours truly to serve up some exclusives.”

Sheppard promised: “Stay tuned for new posts and app takeovers!!”

Kardashian West has maintained silence on all her social media streams since the Oct 3 jewelry heist, when she was bound and left in a bathtub by suspects who remain at large. Police estimate more than $10 million in jewels were stolen.

The paid app is a rare social media spot where Kardashian West charges money for access. It had been left untouched since the robbery.

The heist, sister Khloe Kardashian said on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” about a week after the hold up, was a “wake up call to make a lot of life adjustments” for all in the reality TV family.

Usually heavy social media sharers, the famous sisters, mom, brother and a universe of friends have scaled way back and Kardashian has kept a low profile.Read more at:formal dresses online australia