Issey Miyake Puts Public Accessible Pleating Machine In New Store

Issey Miyake

Puts Public Accessible Pleating Machine in New Store

For many great geniuses of their craft, keys to their success are a secret to the rest of the world. And, until now, the accomplished pleater Issey Miyake followed in suit with the ideal of hidden work. Today, however, the mystery to what makes and creates his craft superior is unveiled and transparent for all consumers to experience.

Walk into the new Homme Plissé Issey Miyake store in Aoyama, Tokyo, and experience the secret to their fine pleating. Taking up 20 percent of the location’s store, the fully functioning pleating machine sits performing an exhibition to the consumer of how each product gains its detail. The brand wants visitors to have a taste of ‘the joy and excitement of making things right in front of them.’

On three days of the week for an hour duration, engineers from the company’s pleating technology department show costumers exactly how their clothes are made. Feeding the machine a T-shirt sewn 1.5 larger than its finished product, the engineers are able to display the 10 minutes of pressing, pleating, and production their product goes through for the pleated creation. 

The idea of transparency builds off of Fendi’s Colosseo Quadrato headquarter opening exhibition in Rome, Dior’s master artisans working on site with leather and fur at their Couturier du Rêve showcase at the Museum of Decorative Arts in Paris, and even the brands own exhibition of engineers working on Ikko Tanaka-related fabric at the Work of Miyake Issey at the National Art Centre in Tokyo. However, this is a first for the brand to be making technical production part of the shopping and purchasing experience. The insight of how products are finished is a tool that can heighten the appreciation for the clothing or garment the costumer is buying. This statement highlights value in slow fashion and creates a physical retail experience like no other. 

In today’s demanding, progressive, manufacturing business, turning a store into a shrine of production transparency is a uncommon tactic that has its attractive qualities. This idea could quite possible inspire the other high-end, luxury brands to follow in suit and invite the consumer to see what really happens to the clothes they wear.

3-18-14 Minami-Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo

Photos | Masaya Yoshimura

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