DESIGNER FEATURES - Oct 15, 2021
Attention to detail, fabric, and silhouette in HYKE's clothes are next to none.
HYKE is a Japanese brand run by a husband and wife duo Hideaki Yoshihara and Yukiko Ode. Since its launch in 2013 the brand has acquired a cult following in Japan, where their clothes, as well as their ongoing collaborations with North Face, adidas, and Mackintosh routinely sell out, but is little known outside of it. We decided to right this wrong by bringing HYKE to ANT/DOTE - we are the exclusive stockist for the brand in the entire North American region. We were doubly excited, after Moncler's recent collaboration with the brand that will surely put it on the global map, to see that we are not the only ones who have been paying attention.
I discovered HYKE on my first trip to Tokyo in 2015, and I was impressed by the rigor with which the duo constructed the clothes. When I later learned that both designers have been trained in menswear, it made sense - after all, there is something absolutely modern in taking the menswear codes and applying them to womenswear, replacing the frou-frou with a certain practicality and matter-of-factness that goes to the core of design and dispenses with the superfluous. Which is not at all to say that HYKE's clothes are masculine - not in the least. Rather, their elegance is quiet and confident. Attention to detail, fabric, and silhouette in HYKE's clothes are next to none.
Yoshihara and Ode began their careers not in design but in retail. For nearly twenty years the couple ran a vintage clothing store in Tokyo's posh-but-edgy Daikanyama district. During this time they accumulated an extensive collection of vintage workwear, military gear, and sportswear. HYKE was born out of an idea of reinterpreting these clothes for the modern world. But reinterpretation does not mean copying - there are only distant echoes of vintage classics in HYKE's designs. Materials like military canvas are freely mixed with tech fabrics but also fine wools, and pleated skirts coexist with quilted liners and M-65 field jackets made newly elegant.
For this Fall / Winter 2021 collection HYKE continued to explore their obsession with reinterpreting vintage military and workwear styles, transforming them into modern womenswear. Some examples - a 1950's British Army Sniper Cape was transformed into an elegant asymmetric black wool version. A faux shearling coat was inspired by a US Army Medical Coat, and a khaki quilted liner (available at our store) was inspired by liners from M65 jackets. These references may not be apparent to the casual observer, but they imbue HYKE's clothes with that je ne sais quoi spirit that makes the clothes immediately attractive.
We caught up with Yoshihara and Ode to ask them six simple questions. Their answers are below.