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Japan Fashion Week Continues To Support Earthquake Relief

Chloe Lauter |
October 17, 2011 | 11:16 a.m. PDT

Staff Reporter

Japan Fashion Week (tokyo-mbfashionweek.com)
Japan Fashion Week (tokyo-mbfashionweek.com)
Japan Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2012 kicks off Monday after being forced to cancel the Autumn/Winter 2011 shows due to the 8.9-magnitude earthquake that hit Japan in March 2011. This year, the event is sponsored by Mercedes-Benz, the same company that sponsors New York Fashion Week, and cosmetics company Maybelline New York. The presence of such large corporate sponsors helps to cultivate increased international recognition for Japan Fashion Week. Show tickets were made available to the public for 1,000 yen, or about 13 dollars, in an effort to continue to support earthquake relief efforts. All proceeds from these ticket sales will be donated to the Japanese Red Cross. “We could never feel OK with ourselves if we decided to abandon Japan and the Japanese fashion,” designers Shunnoz Fiel and Tekasala Ma'at Nzinga of menswear label 1 told Women’s Wear Daily.

The Japan Fashion Week Organization has also announced its intentions to promote a cultural industry enhancement program known as the “Creative Growth Opportunity Support Program”. This program, created through the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, will be incorporated into Japan Fashion Week. The program focuses on helping new Japanese designers reach venues, exhibitors, and overseas buyers.

Despite Japan’s recognition as influential in international fashion, previously Japan Fashion Week has been largely neglected by both the Japanese and international media, partially due to the fact that at only eleven seasons old, it is a relative latecomer to international fashion exhibition. Many Japanese fashion industry leaders think that this year will be pivotal in establishing Japan Fashion Week as an important event. Kazuyuki Yamamuro, editor-in-chief of Women’s Wear Daily Japan said, "It's worth taking a chance on introducing the world to the Japanese fashion scene, renowned for fashion creators with of the most manic tastes in fashion."

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