Turning a dream into a Compasso d’Oro, the story of Vibram Furoshiki

Turning a dream into a Compasso d’Oro, the story of Vibram Furoshiki

Tommaso Berra · 1 month ago · Design

The Compasso d’Oro is perhaps the highest international award for industrial design projects, Vibram has managed to win it with its Furoshiki, turning a dream into one of the most relevant projects in the history of technological innovation and design.
Collater.al met Masaya Hashimoto, the designer who participated in the development of the project from its origins, listening to a story that tells a lot about design and its cultural and social role; starting from the traditions of Japan to create a wrapping sole, an innovative concept that can lead to a new behaviour, a new way of understanding shoes.

How did the Vibram Furoshiki project come about?
In 2011 I was working in the design studio of Isao Hosoe, who at that time was collaborating with Vibram on an innovative concept around the future of the sole, one of the ideas was to reduce the amount of moulds for each sole. Usually there are 10 to 12 moulds for each model, and one of the company’s goals was to optimise production time and costs, thus creating a new product that was more sustainable in many ways. Together with Vibram’s R&D team, we therefore began to think about how to integrate multiple numbers in a single mould, a complex research because the upper usually does not fit different numbers. The prototype that turned out to be successful was made with liquid rubber, a transparent sheet and some fabric, from the intuition of wrapping the foot in a sole coupled with fabric. As soon as we put it on, we knew immediately that it worked. 

Masaya | Collater.al

What was it like working on the most technical details of the design, managing to create a beautiful and durable shoe while still pursuing an essential approach to the elements? Is there anything in particular that inspired the design of Vibram Furoshiki?
I work with the Italian methodology of Gio Ponti or Alberto Rosselli, but my master is Isao Hosoe, the culture of furoshiki is connected to the Japanese one. The shape originates from an object-carrying cloth, which historically serves to contain a gift one brings to someone. Furoshiki is a way to protect and reveal a product with surprise. Each furoshiki is related to the content and the season, they are customised according to the occasion or clothing, a concept similar to the one that makes us choose shoes according to our mood, everyone wears the ones that represent them best.

Vibram Furoshiki has transformed a historically anonymous object, which had to give importance to the content, into an inverse mechanism, with the container becoming the object and the content (the foot) not being revealed, so it is anonymous and, what’s more, it adapts to every conformity and type of foot. Vibram’s role was fundamental from the point of view of technological innovation and for the development of the product from a concept to a sole that envelops the foot; the choice of fabrics was also important, some models for example are made together with a company that produces swimwear, the elasticity of their fabric helped us.

Inventing a product for the first time is tiring but fun, you have to think of everything, from the production method through to analysis and sales. It wasn’t difficult because we were working with trained Vibram technicians. Design is a game, you have to combine technology and culture, if design is not fun it becomes boring, you feel the pain. Design is about creating a new behaviour, leading to a new behaviour. Vibram Furoshiki are this, no longer an object that has to be worn but an object that has to be wrapped, already the gesture is different.

Masaya | Collater.al

“I have learnt that in the West we try to reason with our heads, but the most important and rewarding decision-making is done with our bellies. The modern world reasons with its head, but the body has a longer historical experience, and the experience it has accumulated comes from deeper needs, related to fear and emotionality. It is important to lower the level of emotion and emotionality so as not to create problems.
In design and creativity the greatest source of energy is emotion, if you deny emotion the design becomes flat. So you have to regulate yourself and channel emotion intelligently to the end consumer. The risk is to do something crazy. Excessive creativity is fine for physicists like Einstein, but he needed it to get away from logic”

The figure of the stylist has been replaced in recent years by the concept of the designer, what do you think about this change in the way of defining who creates a collection, can it lose the sense of design, of the technical study of materials and forms?
In history there are designers who could have won the Compasso D’Oro, such as Giorgio Armani or Coco Chanel, because they created with innovation. Chanel created the idea of a modern woman entering the working society, Armani brought the quality of tailoring into the industrial world. There are fashion products that could win great design awards, but now the fashion world has flattened out a bit, because designing also involves a lot of risk.
Today the market is saturated, before you looked at the world of design in relation to the innovations it proposed, now you look at the philosophy of the brand and its concepts, things on which you don’t have too much entrepreneurial risk but which help you to withstand the wave of products you are called upon to produce. Design has changed from an entrepreneurial point of view and this has also changed the approach to production, it is not easy to come up with innovations.

Masaya | Collater.al

When you look at Vibram Furoshiki do you feel more fashion design or product design?
Of product, because the product is precisely ‘product’, that is, something created and sold. If I am a cook, I am a product designer, I cook and sell, but first of all I think of it according to the needs of my guests. The designer must accommodate requests and pamper customers in some way, with the tools I have at my disposal. 

Did you expect the success of the Vibram Furoshiki when it was designed? Did the 2018 Compasso D’Oro help open up the model to the general public?
Every project I do I try to bring it to the same level, then for me the judgement of the outside world is important, to understand what people think to know if that idea can have potential. I can’t understand it before.
With Furoshiki we also won two important awards, DFA Design For Asia from the Hong Kong Design Center and the DIA Design Intelligence Award. In the latter Vibram was invited as a European project, which was a very hard award to get. These two awards were important because it is the first time that a European shoe approaches all the diversity of feet, the Asian foot shape is different from the Western one and shoes do not fit well. I am sure the shoe and sole culture will change in the coming years.

Turning a dream into a Compasso d’Oro, the story of Vibram Furoshiki
Design
Turning a dream into a Compasso d’Oro, the story of Vibram Furoshiki
Turning a dream into a Compasso d’Oro, the story of Vibram Furoshiki
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Jared Leto will be Karl Lagerfeld in a biopic about the French couturier

Jared Leto will be Karl Lagerfeld in a biopic about the French couturier

Andrea Tuzio · 2 months ago · Style

According to WWD, Jared Leto will play visionary French couturier Karl Lagerfeld in a biopic produced by Paradox, the production company of Emma Ludbrook and Leto himself, along with the House of Karl Lagerfeld foundation.

The film’s executive producers will be the designer’s close collaborators Pier Paolo Righi, Caroline Lebar and Sébastien Jondeau. All three of these key figures in Lageferld’s life have held prominent roles in the French fashion designer’s work for more than 20 years, so who better than them to assist Leto in making the film. 

For now, there are no details regarding the plot of the film, but what is known is that the focus will be on what was Lagerfeld’s inner circle through a unique point of view.

“Karl had a career that spanned 50-plus years so both personally and professionally he was close to a number of people. I can say we are going to home in on key relationships that convey different parts of his life”, Leto said in the exclusive interview with WWD.

Over the years, we have been approached by several Hollywood producers who suggested to partner on a movie about Karl’s iconic life, Pier Paolo Righi said in a statement released by Deadline. “It has been only since we met Jared and Emma that we felt truly confident about the story being told in the artistic way Karl would have loved to see. Throughout our conversations, we have created an equally trustful and inspiring creative relationship that will allow us to work together very fluidly on this beautiful project”.

All we have to do is wait!

Jared Leto will be Karl Lagerfeld in a biopic about the French couturier
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Jared Leto will be Karl Lagerfeld in a biopic about the French couturier
Jared Leto will be Karl Lagerfeld in a biopic about the French couturier
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Rosalía is the new face of Acne Studios

Rosalía is the new face of Acne Studios

Andrea Tuzio · 2 months ago · Style

For three years now, Rosalía has been one of the strongest artists on the face of the earth. 
After eight Latin Grammys, ten number-one singles in Spain, your still-ongoing worldwide and her own radio station in Grand Theft Auto Online, the Spanish singer has become the new face of Acne Studios’ new Fall/Winter 2022 campaign.

Shot and filmed by Dutch photographer Paul Kookier, the campaign consists of a series of very intimate shots where the Spanish artist is immortalized as a true muse. 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Un post condiviso da Acne Studios (@acnestudios)

“When I pose for a photographer, I always try to be myself but also try to channel an energy”, explained Rosalía who added: ”What appealed to me the most about working with Paul [Kooiker] was that he has an atemporal style, his pictures could have been taken when photography was invented. But, at the same time, he transmits a freshness of the moment. His pictures are badass”.

“I love how bold but elegant everything is. To me, Acne Studios is a brand that takes care with the fabrics, the colors, the textures – everything is so well thought through, impeccable and fresh”, Rosalía said about the Swedish brand.

“The campaign tried to capture Rosalía in a way she is rarely seen”, explained Kookier, who then added: “While shooting the videos, I discovered that her movements were so strong and confident that we continued this way of working for the stills. The approach was to shoot the contemporary collection in a timeless and historical atmosphere”.

Rosalía is the new face of Acne Studios
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Rosalía is the new face of Acne Studios
Rosalía is the new face of Acne Studios
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Palace’s infamous product descriptions in a book

Palace’s infamous product descriptions in a book

Andrea Tuzio · 2 months ago · Style

Palace is set to release Drop 2 of Fall 2022, scheduled for Friday, Oct. 14
In addition to the classic outerwear, sweatshirts, T-shirts, caps, and pants, the British skateboard brand has unveiled a book destined to become an absolute cult among fans, the title is Palace Product Descriptions: The Selected Archive

Published by Phaidon,the book was edited entirely by Palace founder Lev Tanju and is the official, printed archive of the infamous online product descriptions. Since its inception, Palace has always used descriptions that often had nothing to do with the product itself and were totally out of context and decidedly unconventional, chock-full of humor, social satire, strong opinions, and no-nonsense.

The Edinburgh-born writer, poet and literary critic Sam Buchan-Watts, was asked to write the preface, who, in the very preface to Palace Product Descriptions: The Selected Archive, scrive: “Ludwig Wittgenstein claimed that a serious philosophical work could be written entirely of jokes: we might now add product descriptions”.

Divided by points and strictly all in capital letters, the book consists of more than 3,000 descriptions divided into 22 sui generis categories, such as: “anatomy,” “animals,” “etiquette,” “philanthropy,” “romance,” “travel,” and many others, plus product photos of course. 

Palace Product Descriptions: The Selected Archive will be available starting October 14 from both Palace’s web shop and Phaidon’s website for €40.

Palace’s infamous product descriptions in a book
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Palace’s infamous product descriptions in a book
Palace’s infamous product descriptions in a book
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Supreme and The North Face rocked again

Supreme and The North Face rocked again

Andrea Tuzio · 2 months ago · Style

Right on time like every year these days, came the new collaboration between Supreme and The North Face for the seventh drop of Fall 2022 from the skateboard brand founded by James Jebbia.

Unlike the previous collabs, however, this one seems to have something more in all aspects, both at the creative and communicative level and from a materials point of view. 
The choice made by the two brands involved was to go digging into old joint ventures and restore contemporaneity to the aesthetic choices made in previous years. 

In the Supreme/The North Face Fall 2022 collection we find the fur print of the Nuptse from Fall 2013, or the map print from Spring/Summer 2014 and then again paisley, camo, denim in short, a look at the past but projecting everything into the future.

This collection represents The North Face’s first release under the creative direction of Tremaine Emory, and the direction taken is immediately apparent. 
The collaboration winks at the world of motocross, but all the garments in the collection can be worn regardless of context and look flawless perfectly within the contemporary urban context. 

The Fall 2022 Supreme/The North Face collaboration will be released online and in Supreme stores on Thursday, October 13.

Supreme and The North Face rocked again
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Supreme and The North Face rocked again
Supreme and The North Face rocked again
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