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Kenzo Takada died at the age of 81 at the Neuilly Hospital, a few kilometers from the French capital.

Last Monday, October 5, the death of this iconic fashion designer occurred as a result of complications linked to the Covid-19 virus.

Recognizable by his black horn-rimmed glasses and his “garçon” haircut, Kenzo has managed to maintain for years within the firm he founded that youthful spirit that characterizes him so much.

Biography and early career

He was born in 1939 in Himeji, Japan. He went to Kobe University where, despite his parents’ wishes, he dropped out of school because he felt bored.

Her love of fashion developed at an early age reading her sisters’ magazines. In 1985 she entered Tokyo’s Bunka Fashion College fashion academy and, after receiving her diploma, she left for Paris in 1964.

Certainly, beginnings are never easy. His first creations were made with fabrics from the Paris Flea Market, since it was the only thing he could afford at the time. From the beginning Kenzo brings out all his audacity and creativity to create a garment through the combination of several fabrics.


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Pioneer in unifying the fashion of East and West

In 1970 he created his first brand: Jungle Jap, which would be transformed over the years into the current Kenzo. Later, she won the Fashion Editor Club of Japan award.

His shows were a spectacle to be admired. During 1971 and 1980 he held parades in a circus tent and ended them with women on horseback. Kenzo himself decided to go out on top of an elephant.

After launching his women’s line, he dared to design for the men’s sector as well.

He has been considered a pioneer in bringing fashion trends between East and West.

Its collections feature graphic and floral prints, an urban and colorful style and, in general, a multicultural spirit.


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More than a fashion designer…

We can describe him as non-conformist, creative and very daring. Kenzo did not limit his work to the world of fabrics, since he decided to bet on a profitable perfumery business with the appearance of Kenzo Flower.

If there is one thing that characterizes this designer, it is his ability to reinvent himself. After almost half a century, he launched K3, a luxury line for the home and lifestyle.

End of his career

In 1993 the French multinational conglomerate LVMH, leader of luxury brands, decided to buy the company for the amount of 80.5 million dollars. Six years later, Kenzo left the company.

Since 2019 all his work has been in the hands of Felipe Oliveira Baptista, which continues to maintain the free, fresh and spontaneous spirit of its founder.

Bernard Arnault, chairman and CEO of LVMH, mentions the following words about Kenzo: “Kenzo Takada infused fashion with a tone of poetic lightness and sweet freedom that inspired many designers who succeeded him.”

Kenzo today

The fashion show presented at the last edition of Paris Fashion Week took place in a garden full of flowers and sensory colors.

The creative direct has managed to maintain the line of its founder. In this case he wanted to give priority to sustainability. To this end, his Spring/Summer 2021 collection is in full harmony with nature.

During the fashion show we could see large hats with veils imitating the clothing of beekeepers, flowing dresses with slits and several layers, and even designs inspired by safari costumes. Without a doubt, it turned out to be a tribute to nature.


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Despite his sad loss, there is no doubt that the essence of Kenzo Takada will live on in his signature and serve as an inspirational and multicultural element in the fashion industry.

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