25 Mar 2012

The Geisha Inspiration

Since the production of Memoirs of Geisha movie in 2006, Geisha have become the popular icon when we talk about Japan culture. Geisha (芸者) is traditional, female Japanese entertainer whose skills include performing various Japanese arts such as classical music and dance. The biggest industry in Japan is not shipbuilding, producing cultured pearls, or manufacturing transistor radios or cameras. It is entertainment. The term geisha literally translates to mean "entertainer". Some prostitutes refer to themselves as "geisha", but they are not. A geisha's sex and love life is usually distinct from her professional life. A successful geisha can entrance her male customers with music, dance, and conversation. "Geishas are not submissive and subservient, but in fact they are some of the most financially and emotionally successful and strongest women in Japan, and traditionally have been so. There is currently no western equivalent for a geisha—they are truly the most impeccable form of Japanese art.

The inspiration of the Geisha couture are mainly from Memoirs of Geisha as well as Christine Dior Spring 2007 couture collection featuring Japanese culture that considered as one of the most dramatic fashion show in history. I chose not to inspire by the main character in Memoirs of Geisha, ZIyi Zhang this time, but more toward Gong Li as an antagonist, Hatsumomo in the movie. Her costumes are more glamorous, sexy and darker in tone mostly with black and red colour combination. John Galliano brilliant translation  from the kimono, obis, origami and motives of Japanese culture into the high end couture collection definitely giving me not less inspiration in certain way when designing the gown too.
It is a combination of black, red and gold colour for my Geisha couture, to give a touch of glamorous but yet mysterious. The top of the dress is a translation of obis in Kimono, follow by asymmetrical gold laces and beading from the waist to the hip area. The 3D element at the left shoulder and right hips as well as a very long train adding a dramatic and couture touch to the dress. Not forgetting the hair accessories which are one of the important elements to complete the whole look.

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