Koji Norihide of Haversack describes himself as "the traditional everyday wear designer for the adult man." Using men's standard functional wear (military, marine workwear and uniforms) as a starting point, as well as some of the most influential eras in men's fashion-- the 1930s and 1940s, Norihide blends Japanese craftsmanship with vintage clothing elements as well as modern ideas and trends in his Haversack collection for men. A womenswear collection was recently launched, as well. We recently interviewed Mr Norihide via email...
WATM: How do you explain the relatively recent emergence of neo-traditional sportswear?
KN: Simple. Because design reached the point where there was nothing else to design, i.e the markets reached the stage where they were overflowing. So to move forward we must also have to move backwards. The popularity has grown because the consumer is made aware of the past with the present design influence, creating something which is fresh and pleasing to wear.
WATM: Where is your collection manufactured? How are traditional construction techniques employed in your collection ?
KN: Our production is all Made in Japan, the land of Kimono, resulting in the garments which I design and produce all being exceptionally well made and finished. I believe that Japan is probably the cleanest and most detailed make up in the world, something which arises from the Japanese mentality in the production of any type of anything. Special finishes, stitching methods, pressing and the overall appearance.
WATM: Do you think the consumer cares about where something is made?
KN: I dont think so, but I know that they care about quality, fitting and the overall look.
WATM: What items do you consider to be iconic menswear classics and why?
KN: British 5 piece suits, vintage garments from the past, 1920s New Portland look styles having an elegant and sporty look. Military tendencies in style and design. In fact some of these have been the theme for my S/S collection for men.
WATM: Who do you consider a style icon?
KN: Sorry but I dont have any, as I tend to judge the garment which I like and not by the designer who designed them.