My eyes popped out when I saw Everlasting Sprout's magical pastel knits in 2009, my introduction to the Japanese knitwear label now solely designed by Keiichi Muramatsu, and I've been watching keenly ever since. I'm not the only one outside of Japan with a massive crush on Everlasting Sprout - established by Muramatsu and Noriko Seki in 2005 - though you'd think I was if you went by the lack of information and coverage of the brand outside of the country (the same can be said for any Japanese brand that isn't Commes, Junya, or Issey, which is unfortunate). WWD.com extends a further reach to international fashion weeks and has covered Everlasting Sprout three times, then Style.com finally reviewed a collection last year for SS13, but so far it's a one-off, though that possibly couldn't be helped, I can't find any evidence that Muramatsu actually showed at Tokyo Fashion Week in March. (And even his own website is spotty with visual coverage of his career, many collections appear in name only - we want all of the pictures!) But there is a new collection for autumn and that's what you're looking at. It's called White and Black, I found it on his website and was relieved to see he's still at it. And surprised to find that the Sprout girl has grown up beyond the experimental spectacle of the lampshade skirts which now seem a universe away, and which were far more difficult to reproduce for the mass market. One can forgive taking a turn toward the commercial, especially when it's this beautiful, but hopefully those complicated and wonderfully wacky knits that seem to be the purest expression of Muramatsu's passion for knits will resurface in future collections.
Muramatsu likes to write little poems with accompanying line drawings to introduce his collections:
Black and white.
White spreads. Black cuts through.
White clean. White scary.
Black is serious. Black wriggles.
Keep in mind this is a translation. But I think we can get the gist? (Still not sure why white is scary but it makes me picture a kid out for Halloween as a ghost with a white sheet over his head. That's probably not what he meant.) Anyway, the tweeds are absolutely gorgeous and look very expensive though they tend to be more reasonably priced when compared to similar garments from the big luxury brands, and I love the styling of the outfits which bring the fun and irreverence of Everlasting Sprout to the collection. Leave it to Muramatsu to make black and white so textural and exciting:
Photos: Everlasting Sprout