Hat designer

I was thinking, why I didn’t go for fashion designer job at that time, when I graduated from college.

When I was in Bunka, end of 80’s to beginning of 90’s.There were plenty jobs available!!!

Issey, Kenzo, Hanae Mori, Hiroko Koshino, Hanai Yukiko, Junko Shimada – couture fashion designer brand, JUN, Takeo Kikuchi, Kansai – Mens fashion brand, Y’s, comme-des-garcons, Nicole, – high fashion brand..

You name it, all the big name were there. I wasn’t interested in going that world, some reason, my instinct told me too much business going….I was much more in street fashion…


Perhaps, I knew I could make any of the clothes if I wanted, because I have used to seen how to make the clothes and dress and coat, suits……from my mum,and I had plenty of ideas and designs in my head.

But I didn’t know about hat! Again, my curiosity of seeing new world….

My first year of designer was learning mostly-pattern cutting, sewing, designing, making pattern from the design, drafting document to go for productions, fabrics, interface, tools, market research. basically everything.

There are 7 designers in house. Each designer creates 2 collections per year. My first collection ( my fashion college’s graduation show was wonderful. I created collections, twice, because I had extra two graduations! ) wasn’t sold, perhaps I had too much “me” going…

But from second collection started selling some of the collection, then what happens,,,I went out street, I was seeing the hats I created!!! At the department stores, from the train somebody wearing my hats which I created!! When I walked street, I sew people were wearing my creations!!!!! It was rewarding so much!

I really enjoyed working there in down town Tokyo. Fantastic people and very family like company, almost too comfortable, there.

But I don’t know,,, after 4 years, I was planning to study in London for further hat study……..



From other side of world,,,,seeing Japanese fashion is very curious things… we just enjoy showing what we like together in our style!!

Japanese fashion was in V & A:


From inside Japan, I was the same…











Fashion college

I didn’t want to finish off my story like a loser…

My point wasn’t life is interesting…life is very twisted and not always favourable ..but you shouldn’t give up your talent,or dream!

So, I continue.

After been defeated from my university entrance exam, I was lost for long time…

Even though my parents let me study another year going prep school. already spending lots of extra money for the supportive art school earlier and let me continue another year. I have 2 brothers and a sister. They are fine, because they got result in the end. I couldn’t. But I was so selfish, I should think where the money come from and should start working on my own. I never thought anything like that, because my dad was working really hard to pay everything for us.

I lost my confident. I thought I didn’t have talent. My parents recommended me to work in office for change the direction…so I did, I got completely bored of the work. I just couldn’t stand it. My luck! I have chance to transfer to Tokyo office. ..

Company paid my accommodation where I wanted in Kouenji in Tokyo!!

I really enjoyed life in Tokyo by myself. I got freedom from finances and from my home.

But after 1 year, I wanted to go back to do art.  My mum said, why didn’t I take fashion instead of art, so at least I got some skills. I didn’t dislike the idea. My mus is a very skilled dress maker although she was doing as her hobby, all my clothes been made by her.  Almost all our clothes and bags or anything sewing and knitting by her. I used to make my dolls clothes and hats cut form my mum’s fabrics. I was always surrounded by fabrics….

So, I stopped working and asked my parents to support me to study fashion college. but I also asked if I can go graphic school on top, how selfish I was…..and my parents supported me..

After starting fashion college, I start getting serious about fashion. I concentrate for fashion college so much, I stopped going to graphic school , by then, my confidence went back again! I was doing part time jobs like gallery cafe, Jazz cafe, Ryou-tei waitress, leather craft workshop, seeing different world and enjoyed so much!!

Fashion college was very strict. 6: 00 pm on time. otherwise you will lock out. Finish at 9:00 pm, after that have to do home work was very hard. You have to bring complete finished work all the time!! But some reason, we had time to play after school finish!! How much energy we had??

After graduation, I got job as a hat designer at hat making company in down town Tokyo. At that time pattern cutter or designer are the popular jobs. Some reason, I couldn’t take my eyes off from ” Hat designer ” on notice board.

So I tried and got my first fashion related full time job!! I kept going extra year complete my fashion college. After my work finish I ran to station to catch the underground, and had to ran Koushyu kaidou…from Minami Shinjyuku exit to fashion college with big heavy bag every day before getting locked out…all the time, 2 or a minutes I had spare….


Bunka fashion college where I studied for 3 years!!!





Drawing practice.

Last week, I was talking with an talented print artist.

She showed me very good work of her drawing.

That inspired me so much, so I started draw once again.

I used to walk around and sit on the bench and sketch on postcard wherever I go. I love drawing since I was 10. I used to sketch my brothers or sister or my cats or dog whoever around me.

My brothers used to play guitar, I used to listen on return!lol

I tried to study in art university in Tokyo, chance changed my direction. I couldn’t pass entrance exam twice…

Eventually I went to fashion college, then, hats! My drawing changed to fashion, too.

Life is interesting where you turn!

Now I am feeling, my son has to decide which way he is going, too.

I still enjoy drawing. It is like a meditation for me.

Felix 3 years old, 4.Feb,2015

Felix 3 years old, 4.Feb,2015