The IKI is an aesthetic ideal that appeared in Japan during the EDO period. This notion aimed for a natural elegance. Anahide Saint André, passionate about Japan and its refinement, relies on this ideal to offer refined collections with meticulous details in a contemporary spirit on a modular and reversible technical concept allowing you to modify your style without changing everything.
IKI, between discretion and audacity
A concept born in Edo
The IKI Concept was born in the pleasure districts where Japanese men and women rubbed shoulders outside the conventions at the beginning of the 19th century, in the South East of the city of Edo (former Tokyo). A contrasting period between prosperity and sumptuary laws established by the shoguna to counter the luxury desires of the lords.
In these districts, the sumptuary laws produced a reaction and ended up creating a counterculture opposed to the predominant Confucian order and gradually a particular artistic sense, which largely marks this great era. This current, which is very well known today, has modified conventions.
During this period, laws specified conventions for all daily actions, occupations as well as dress codes (sumptuary laws) for each social class. These codes specified colors, materials, but also behaviors.
A movement against sumptuary laws
In this context, only the colors blue, grey, brown and white were authorized, limiting the possibilities of using other colors and stimulating the desire to discreetly create a style borrowed from seduction and to modify historical conventions without raising comments.
The wealthy merchants, who were much more prosperous, discreetly transgressed these laws by adorning themselves with long garments that were simple in appearance but whose details executed on gray crepes were of great quality and richness: embroidery, silk lining, small silk bias bindings, ornaments, delicate white hanari, cleverly hidden inlays in the folds of kimonos and obi.
In this sense, being IKI means being bold and non-conformist, elegant and refined without sophistication, spontaneous and naturally elegant. The Taira dress by Anahide Saint André is inspired by this idea which, mixed with haute couture techniques, offers a refined and elegant model.
IKI a refined and subtle approach
Origins of modern Japanese aesthetics
The details applied to the kimonos were revealed little by little in an accomplice or intimate relationship and offered a special touch of sensuality. IKI inspires a nonchalant, understated, contemporary and urban elegance. This concept embodies both simplicity, spontaneity, an open-mindedness turned towards the future. It reflects a subtle balance which is gradually revealed and creates a perceptible tension in contact with the other, an attraction and marks a feeling of seduction.
This refinement is revealed in an intimate relationship and creates a special touch of sensuality. This subtle search reflects a mastered balance without trying to contain itself between rigor and audacity and the quest for beauty, for luxury just for oneself which is revealed in contact with others.
IKI inspires all Japanese style
The definition of this notion "IKI" is very technical but it inspires the Japanese artistic ideal, almost a philosophy, which can be found in design, fashion, arts and architecture in general and refers and develops in the world of design, limited editions, artistic products throughout the country.
In particular, when we study the kimonos of this great era we discover small jewels of refinement and elegance. Each kimono produced with attention and mastered ancestral technique is based on this notion and marks all the style and refinement of this era. The white haneri that reveals the back of a woman's neck offers a unique scene and offers a unique experience of sensuality.
A source of inspiration for the brand
The IKI style reinvented
Passionate about Japanese culture, travel and architecture, the brand is inspired by IKI and uses its French know-how to create and offer modular and reversible clothing produced in France in its workshop in Meudon. Extensive research work to develop refined collections with meticulous details.
She plays on the contrasts between materials on a wide range of colors on all of her textile products. In her French workshop, she focuses on developing her collections and produces clothes and modular products to modify her look without changing everything. The Dévoile modular top is the perfect expression of this. Every year, the designer offers limited editions based on haute couture techniques to offer unique products to her best customers.
A timeless and refined brand
On the fringes of fashion, cradled by Japanese culture, the designer creates the brand's collections by mixing haute couture techniques combining tradition and French know-how in a contemporary spirit.
This Japanese artistic ideal corresponds to my vision of fashion and style for a free, natural and committed woman, discreet and radiant, simple and chic at the same time". She combines together clean, structured and fluid shapes at the same time, enhanced by wide openings on the color. The finishing details executed inside the garment and the precious textiles used as linings are discreetly revealed. The game of superposition of modular items and the finishes studied for reversibility which characterize the brand are based on this Japanese concept for a timeless and durable wardrobe, both refined and refined, allowing you to modify your wardrobe without changing everything. The rear perfectly illustrates this Japanese concept.