PARIS — Yusuke Takahashi mixes tradition and technology for his new fashion label, called CFCL, which stands for Clothing for Contemporary Life. It’s very much of the moment with its easy-to-wear garments, genderless spirit and sustainable positioning.
“The foundation of my design process always starts with examining how people live,” the 35-year-old Japanese designer explained. “The world is filled with so much diversity and ways of living, and I wanted my clothes to be one of the elements to be able to support and enrich people’s daily lives.”
Takahashi, who joined the Issey Miyake design studio in 2010 and became artistic director of Issey Miyake Men in 2013, left the brand in February.
It had always been a dream of Takahashi’s to launch his own label, and since university, he’s been fascinated with computer-program knitting.
“Therefore, I wanted to create a new brand that was developed by using the technique of traditional knitting made modern by computer technology,” he said.
CFCL garments are mostly made of 3-D, computer-developed knitwear using sustainable yarns. They’re seamless pieces, often with bold silhouettes and solid, bright colors nodding to nature, such as yellow and orange, inspired by the sun.
“There are no eye-catching statement details,” Takahashi said. “I wanted the garment to compliment the wearer, not overpower them.”
CFCL will introduce “volumes” rather than traditional seasonal collections, with the first being called Vol. 1.
The theme of that, and the concept of CFCL overall, “is knit ‘ware’…as a container. The word ‘ware’ is used to describe an object, which holds or contains something — pottery, cutlery or even data,” Takahashi said. “Knit ‘ware’ means the clothing has the elegance of pottery and the functionality of ware. Clothing, after all, is a container for the body. My designs mold around human beings. Pieces are designed to compliment individuals’ personality and their identity.”
WATCH: Yusuke Takahashi Talks CFCL
That goes beyond any delineation of age, gender or nationality, he said. CFCL is not only sustainable by its computer engineering techniques and using recycled, repurposed materials, but also thanks to its transparent supply chain.
One black dress has bell sleeves with stripes of olive green, yellow and orange. A long, white sleeveless jacket comes with an adjustable belt to make for easy wearing for men or women.
The idea is to create a core collection, with pieces that can be mixed, matched and built upon.
CFCL has about 20 item categories, including lightweight jackets, tops, trousers, skirts and dresses, and prices ranging from $180 to $1,200. The brand will launch in early February 2021 through its own e-commerce site and also in around 40 doors worldwide, including Ssense, Isetan, SKP, United Arrows and Galeries Lafayette.
CFCL’s web site is cfcl.jp.