Founded in 1993, Pleats Please by Issey Miyake quickly became a pioneering label known for its perfectly pleated polyester. Since the 1970s Issey Miyake was looking to create a ‘garment for life’, a piece of clothing that anyone could wear at any time.
Issey Miyake launched Pleats Please in 1993 after conception and fleshing out the idea since 1989. Here’s a brief timeline of Issey Miyake’s journey to creating Pleats Please.
Miyake started presenting his fashion collections in Paris starting in 1973. From the start, he was focused on the concept of making clothing from “a piece of cloth”. His process explores the relationship between the body and the cloth that covers it.
In 1988, Miyake presented an exhibition ISSEY MIYAKE A-ŪN at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris. The exhibition focused upon Miyake’s explorations with materials, while also presenting his work as a whole. At the same time, Miyake began to experiment further with pleats, in the hopes of expanding the possibilities of the medium using a new technique and a different perspective.
In 1991, Miyake used his new pleating technique to create clothing for the first performance of William Forsythe’s new production The Loss of Small Detail for the Frankfurt Ballet. By creating clothing that would allow dancers freedom of movement Miyake found the universal clothing that he had dreamed of in 1968.
In 1993, he launched his Pleats Please line offering clothing as a product that was easy to wear, care for, travel with, that was practical, comfortable and elegant.
How the pleats are made
Instead of cutting and sewing clothes from pre-pleated fabric, he first cut and sewed precisely oversized garments (3x their final size), sandwiched them between layers of paper then fed them into a heat-press which shrank them to perfectly sized garments, simultaneously time finalizing the shape and texture.
After the success of this technique, he began to explore other mediums using different machinery and handcrafting, testing the fabric’s response to folding, twisting, pressing, and crushing resulting in a wide range of pleated clothing.
In 2013 Issey designed In 2013, Miyake produced the Aomori University Men’s Rhythmic Gymnastics Team outfits.
These pieces became the start of the Homme Plissé collection which were everyday pleats for men.
Issey’s vision of a ‘garment for life’ evolved into his Pleats Please and Homme Plissé lines of clothing. This kind of enduring design is incredibly rare, minimalist, dynamic, democratic and recognisable. These pieces have become staples for everyone including creatives, and celebrities. Issey Miyake’s pleated garments are meant to move in harmony with the human form, they’re not made to suit any one body type. This is why these pleats are timeless and in such demand today.
Shop Pleats Please by Issey Miyake at SWOP hereSources: https://mds.isseymiyake.com/im/en/