Timeless design created from masters of simplicity coming together, meeting their vision on how to create a home with harmony. The end result, the Iittala X Issey Miyake Collection, is a unique collaborative collection of high quality ceramics, glass and home textiles.
Iittala and Issey Miyake are ideal partners as both brands share similar values and design philosophies. Iittala is a master of timeless design icons, whereas Issey Miyake is a global brand renown for innovative fashion that go beyond trends. “The two brands have always been true to their philosophy of timeless design and innovative thinking. They both value tradition, functionality, craftsmanship and the use of unusual materials and methodologies in their work”, says Harri Koskinen, design director of Iittala.
The collection has been designed in close collaboration between the Iittala Concept & Design team and Miyake Design Studio. Throughout the development process, both teams have shown a great appreciation of similar values such as nature, handicraft, simplicity and new technology in their work.
The continuous research and development in working with cloth in the special way of Issey Miyake is now crystalized in the collaboration project with Iittala. The textile items in the collection are created using not only the latest technology to fold and pleat fabric but also in the delicate handicraft involved. The pentagon form used in the vessels suggests a non-daily element, something for special moments, says Midori Kitamura, President of Miyake Design Studio.
Miyake was born on April twenty-second, 1938 in Hiroshima, Japan. He studied graphic design at the Tama Art University, Tokyo, graduating in 1964. After graduation, he worked in Paris and New York City. Returning to Tokyo in 1970, he founded the Miyake Design Studio, a high-end producer of women's fashion.
In the late 1980s, he began to experiment with new methods of pleating that would allow both flexibility of movement for the wearer as well as ease of care. The garments are cut and sewn first, then sandwiched between layers of paper and fed into a heat press, where they are pleated. The fabric's 'memory' holds the pleats and when the garments are liberated from their paper cocoon, they are ready-to wear.
Miyake had a long friendship with Austrian-born pottery artist Dame Lucie Rie. She bequeathed to him her substantial collection of ceramic and porcelain buttons, which he integrated into his designs and presented in various collections.
He also developed a friendship with Apple's Steve Jobs. For him, he produced the black turtleneck which would become part of Jobs' signature attire. Jobs said, " I asked Issey to make me some of his black turtlenecks which I liked so much, so he made me a hundred of them”.
In March 1992 Miyake was quoted in the International Herald Tribune
"Design is not for philosophy - it's for life”. In 1994 and 1999, Miyake turned the design of both men's and women's collections respectively, to his associate, Naoki Takizawa, for him to be able to return to research full-time.
In 2007, Naoki Takizawa opened his own brand, supported by the Issey Miyake Group and was replaced, as a Creative Director of the House of Issey Miyake, by Dai Fujiwara.
The Iittala X Issey Miyake home collection breathes the Issey Miyake spirit, meant to bring harmony to everyday life, where we are constantly encouraged to do more and live faster. It invites us to stop and enjoy the moment through the objects and fabrics created in soothing colours and of delicate shapes.