Girls Just Want To Have Fun!

My favorite things

27 years old, Kikuno talks about work, play and things she likes.
Photo_Koichi Tanoue

Kikuno-san who launched the apparel brand 〈PURPLE THINGS〉
two years ago after went through graphic designer and blogger.
The brand turned to be men’s featuring since spring / summer of 2018
and its first exhibition held at beginning of this month.
However, she does not hesitate to say “I don’t plan to do just the clothing brand”.
This time we asked Kikuno-san about her work and what she’s interested in now.

If I can’t find the clothes I want to wear, then I should try making it.

Please let us hear about yourself.
Hi, I’m Kikuno. Born in Setagaya, raised in Shibuya. I started 〈PURPLE THINGS〉 from the spring of 2015.
What brought you to start the brand?
Though originally I don’t shop so much, I couldn’t find any clothes that I wanted to wear anywhere. Well then I should try making it. I feel like I started doing things rather than starting up. There was a time when I didn’t do anything for half a year, and I was doing loose. But I think I'll do it properly from this year.
What is the origin of the brand name?
Because I like purple color. That’s all.
It’s not something like with the meaning of the brand concept, is it?
I don’t think of concept that much. But I think it’s okay. I like making what I like to wear now. I don’t have much chance wearing my own brands clothes though. Lol
I'm getting bored of seeing my clothes during process of making. It’s like not my feeling anymore. Also, I am a little shy wearing my own brand.
Do you like fashion from long ago?
Not really. T-shirts, pants, sneakers are my standard style, and I don’t carry bags most of the time as I don’t like to have luggage with me. For sneakers, I buy what I fond of and wear it until crushed and buy the same one again .... But I’ve been loving fashion magazines since long ago.
What kind of magazines have you been reading?
“Seventeen” when I was at junior high school. In high school time, “ViVi” or "PS". I also liked the beauty series so I bought several magazines every month. But I didn’t read them for fashion purpose, just enjoyed seeing pictures and reading texts.
Do you still read magazines?
Yes, I do. I browse at a bookstore and buy if I could find the one I like. I read a lot of both fashion and culture magazines. It's not for getting the picture of the trend, it's just my hobby. I like reading books anyway.
What sort of books do you read?
I read novels. Across genre from love story to suspense. I read them at airplane when I go overseas, or sometimes I go outside with just taking a book with me. Recently I haven’t got much time for reading though.
Mentioning reading books at airplane, do you go overseas often?
Pretty much. Because I do working for that purpose. Lol This year I went to New York and London. I hope I can go to Thailand at end of the year. I’d like to go to places I’ve never been to like Morocco.
Don’t you find difficulties of traveling overseas in terms of language?
I don’t feel that because I went to the International Elementary School.
Sounds good. You were studying abroad, weren’t you?
I studied in San Francisco and London. In San Francisco I went to a junior college while living in a share house, and in London I studied art at Central Saint Martins.
How did you make your mind to study abroad?
I went to technical college of photography after graduating from high school, but since it’s a two-year system, I am going to graduate two years earlier than college student. I didn’t want to waste remaining two years and I wanted hang around still. Lol I couldn’t think of taking a job and I didn’t know what I want to do yet.
How come San Francisco and London?
I became fan of San Francisco when I was home staying while high school student. It's not very flashy city and there’re not so much things to do, but it's good place. Living at flashy places like LA or New York is not quite me, so it seems calm place like San Francisco suited for me. For London, I knew that there’s a short-term course in St. Martin and I thought I should go because I was interested in a design.
Did you have a good time?
Yes. During San Francisco stay, my friends visited one after another from Japan. Everyday was a fun like we went down to LA by 6 to 7 hours car driving. Many fashionable people in London. I was excited just walking around the city.

I happen to get bored of doing just one thing.

What did you do after coming back to Japan?
I worked at design office. The graphic design.
Did you not think of continuing that work?
Somehow I get bored of doing just one thing. I’ve done various things so far. Once I did a blogger and now I’m writing a column and so on. It’s not my intention to do only clothes in the future, I hope I can continue doing other things.
You held the exhibition this month at "Nakameumeon" where we had shooting today didn’t you?
Yes. It was the proper exhibition for the first time. 〈PURPLE THINGS〉 will be a men’s brand from this season.
Why men’s brand?
Because I usually hardly wear ladies' clothes so it's kind of hard to design for me. It would be better if it had changed over or better yet. The image is easier for men.

The source of inspiration is a skater.

For what kind of people you’d like to wear your brand's clothes?
I haven’t thought much about the target. I wouldn’t think that people to wear T - shirts or Hoodies that I create for their whole life. Probably they’ll throw them away when got dirty. But that's fine. I don’t think that I want people to wear with care forever. Actually I myself wearing clothes that way. Since I get a lot of inspiration from skaters, I place importance on mobility. Talking about clothes, your feeling would be a bit tensed if you wear a hard stuff and on the other hand, feeling would be relaxed when wearing loose stuff. I hope if the clothes of 〈PURPLE THINGS〉 will be felt like that.
So, the source of inspiration is a skater.
That’s right. My friends tell me which skaters in the west and east coast of the United States are cool and I watch their skate videos and I also check Japanese skaters. How to dress is quite different depending on the area and it’s interesting. Skaters in Paris seem to be fashionable, or the feeling of LA's mind is good too. I wouldn’t put it in the actual design much, but I feel that atmosphere and I am referring to it.
Is there any favorite skaters?
I think Sean Pablo is fashionable and cool. He is one of〈Supreme〉skaters crews.

I’d like to do whatever I like to do without deciding this only.

Is there certain rules on your job?
Work properly on weekdays. Work on weekdays, rest on weekends. If I don’t set this routine, I might skive or I’ll end up working on weekends. I need some time to play.
What is the moment when you feel rewarding?
I don’t have that yet.
Everyday is fun, but I haven’t felt rewarding yet. I don’t know when that moment comes yet. I guess I can feel rewarding when I did something huge to convince myself.
What’s something huge?
I do not know yet, but I hope the moment will come someday.
What is your goal for the future?
I wish that clothes I made to be sold in overseas. If I can do wholesale to those places, I might be able to convince myself a little like "Oh, you are doing a good job".
Is there anything else you’d like to do?
I wish I could continue writing. I started writing as a blogger, now I am writing column every month and it’s very fun. I also want challenge doing radio. I like music. Invite someone and talk. I’d like to do whatever I like to do beside working and playing without deciding this only.