Jonathan Anderson is arguably one of the most hyped fashion designers in the industry right now. Even if you don't know him by name, you'll definitely recognize his work, from the pierced handbags from his namesake label, which have taken street style by storm, to his much-lauded overhaul of Spanish house Loewe. The 33-year-old has already had quite the lauded career, but he's about to start on another chapter — and it's a move that'll make his more price-conscious admirers very happy: J.W. Anderson was announced as Uniqlo's latest collaborator.
"When Uniqlo first approached me, I was very, very excited because I wear Uniqlo all the time," Anderson explained to Refinery29 at a press preview. "J.W.Anderson has been going for ten years and I’ve been really fascinated by this idea of democratizing fashion or cultural activities within fashion and I wanted something which was a new type of normality ... I wanted to open my eye to a different kind of design process. It was so exciting to boil things down to their essence."
The designer created a capsule collection for the Japanese retailer's LifeWear range for fall '17. The concept behind this partnership is a celebration of British heritage, which Yuki Katsuta, senior vice president of Fast Retailing (Uniqlo's parent company) and head of research and design at Uniqlo, believes Anderson exemplifies: "The British Isles constitute a treasure house of such apparel, with duffle coats and fisherman's sweaters being just two examples," Katsuta said. "In partnering with J.W. Anderson, one of Britain's most innovative and creative brands, we will tap into traditions while pursuing progress in designs and fabrics, to craft styles that are enduringly appealing."
In the past, Uniqlo has worked with major fashion names like Jil Sander, Carine Roitfeld, and Inès de la Fressange. "Collaborations are incredibly important in design," Anderson said. "When I think of Uniqlo, I think of things that are perfectly made, that people have spent a lot of time considering; it’s a difficult job ... Working with Uniqlo is probably the most incredible template of democracy in fashion, and it’s nice that my design can be accessible to anyone, on all different levels."