Thursday, September 21, 2023
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Fetico Tokyo Spring 2024

Let it be said that nobody is making sexy clothes quite like Fetico’s Emi Funayama. This season, the designer invited us into her hotel bedroom, hung a Do Not Disturb sign on the door, and showed us the extent of what she was capable of.

Funayama had been impacted by Sophie Calle’s 1981 work The Hotel, a collection of voyeuristic photographs that the French artist took of empty hotel rooms while working as a chambermaid in Venice. Unmade bedsheets; racy magazines discarded in the wastepaper basket; chintzy wallpaper and clothes thrown on the back of a chair. Funayama took the Hong Kong actress Faye Wong as her muse and put her in those spaces: “I created the collection while imagining various scenes of her traveling, spending time at the hotel, or on stage,” she said backstage after the show.

To create that fantasy, Funayama dressed her muse in lashings of sheer lingerie, silk slips as smooth as liquor, and floral print pajamas evocative of hotel wallpaper, plus out-of-the-house pieces like cotton eyelet dresses, denim, and a sensual power suit that spelled business. Particularly seductive was the choker-necked sheer panelling, plus a clever denim miniskirt that was subtly slit at the hips so that each step flashed a peek of skin.

The fire in Funayama’s belly was ignited when she went to Paris in March, for the first time since before the pandemic. “I felt a great sense of freedom and realized that I had been suppressing myself. I want women to be able to feel a sense of freedom even in clothing, and to make choices that would allow them to be themselves, so that this would lead to the choice to live as they want,” she said. It was that Do Not Disturb sign again, repurposed literally, and for empowerment: “Do not disturb women living their own life freely,” she said.

That potent thought unlocked a new level of accomplishment for Fetico; this collection was a real triumph. Funayama speaks to a new kind of sexuality among young women in Tokyo that is unfettered by societal expectations to be prim and proper—you only had to see the legions of fans who turned up at the show wearing their own Fetico pieces to see how well Funayama’s message is resonating. These are clothes made to seduce, to dominate, to take over the world. What else to do but submit?



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