I always wished I was one of those people who had the imagination to become out of touch with reality. When Mikio Sakabe showed his graduate collection at the Royal Academy in Antwerp last year, which I went to, I was sort of fixated by his vision of cityscapes and jealous that he saw that kind of beauty in such bleak buildings. Shining colours, bright lights, windows flickering at night on skyscrapers are all present again in Sakabe's AW07-8 collection. Entitled 'Resort Mood', Sakabe has wishfully imagined refined European ladies visiting Asia on holiday and wearing something languously decadent and luxurious yet also mysterious just as for the Western world, in a cliched way, Asia still piques curiosity.
It's silk all the way with silk linen, silk jersey, silk velvet and silk cotton. Where fashion is becoming almost seasonless with the weather playing havoc, Sakabe has taken full advantage of that and given us clothes to promenade slowly under the sun whilst perhaps carrying an antique parasol. It sounds strange to say but both formal and relaxed elements are there. I particularly love the jewel encrusted shirt because there's a lot of 'meat' on it, 'meat' being lots of chunkyness going on with the gems.
Ultimately though, it is all about escaping into those mind-warping prints and yes whilst being jealous, such images don't formulate when I'm staring at grey cityscapes, I'm glad Sakabe takes me to the softly glowing colourful city with his vision.