Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Eastern Promise; Take the Fast-Track to the Orient This Season with Judo Jackets, Obi Belts and Intricate Prints. Katie Wright Reveals Easy Ways to Become a Fashion-East-A

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Eastern Promise; Take the Fast-Track to the Orient This Season with Judo Jackets, Obi Belts and Intricate Prints. Katie Wright Reveals Easy Ways to Become a Fashion-East-A

Article excerpt

Byline: Katie Wright

CREATIVE types often cite trips to far-flung destinations as inspiration for their work, and nowhere was this more obvious than the spring/summer catwalks, where Western designers imbued their collections with a wealth of Eastern influences.

The escapism effect was felt most strongly at Maison Martin Margiela and Marni, where the finest fabrics were cut in cheongsam or kimono shapes, while at Carven and Lanvin, antique pottery prints were splashed on sporty separates.

PS PSBut when it comes to the high street interpretation, simply throwing on a kimono won't cut it this season - this trend is about taking traditional attire and bringing it bang up to date. From cool judo jackets to pretty prints, all aboard the Orient Express...

GENTLY DOES IT MOVE over baseball jacket, the latest sports kit to be appropriated by the fashion world is 'judo gi', as worn by practitioners of the Japanese martial art judo, which means 'gentle way'.

Traditionally white and fastened with a thick obi belt, the judo jacket has been reimagined in a host of colours and cuts on the high street.

Providing a cool spring alternative to your usual buttondown blazer, they're thankfully not as bulky as their sporting counterparts, and the cinched in waist works well with high-waisted trousers and skirts.

Pair with pleat front cropped trousers or palazzo pants for a relaxed Kyoto-meets-Capri vibe.

OBI-HAVE!THE real shortcut to Asian fusion fashion is the obi belt.

These sash belts have a rich history in Japan, where they were originally made from great lengths of heavy brocade and used to fasten kimonos. For SS15, the obi is detached from its historical heritage and is fair game knotted over pretty much any dress, as long as it sits snugly on the waist (to avoid any unsightly fabric folding).

Play up the oriental connection by adding an obi to a sleeveless maxi dress, or belt a contrasting colour over a pale jacket and black trousers for evening.

FLORIENTAL FINISH THE oriental trend is also responsible for some of the season's most beautiful prints, from stylised scenes featuring swooping herons to dense florals inspired by the famous cherry blossoms that bloom across Japan every spring. …

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