The FERAL FLAIR pop-up boutique in the SEIBU department store was a huge success, and the person in charge at SEIBU told us that they had never experienced such high sales at a pop-up shop. Being there to help sell the clothing allowed me to notice something really interesting.

Oddly enough, those who came to see the shop and buy our clothing had something in common. You may think that it was their appearance or style, because they came to see clothes. But it wasn't. It’s hard to express in words, but I would say that it was about their humanity. I might be overstating it, but even though they didn’t know each other, if someone had told me that they all were friends, I would have believed it. They definitely had something in common. And though I didn't actually know them, I would have been really happy to make their acquaintance. I can’t explain the feeling, so let me just say that I felt that they were all so charming. It was a happy discovery for me.

Then it happened. I saw one lady take a good long look at the FF clothing. She took her time looking through the shop, and then went away, but soon came back. She chose some clothing to try on, including a print dress. When I opened the curtains of the fitting room, I saw that she was flustered, because she and the dress were incompatible. She had a stiff look on her face instead of a smile, and then told me with an embarrassed smile,"it is too good for me”. She didn’t buy anything, and left. It may have sounded hackneyed to offer some excuse, so I didn’t. But, to be brutally honest, I can say that her words were true, because she couldn't wear the dress with the right effect. Her appearance was good, but she had a problem with her attitude, and in her mind she wasn't ready to wear the dress. Maybe she thought that a thing is a only a thing after all. Initiative was always on her side, and she simply avoided things and clothes that she couldn't control. Take a car, for example. Perhaps she drove a car that could easily be driven by everyone, but had she ever driven a car that was a bit eccentric in its steering and handling? Had she ever, after controlling it, opened herself up to its ability and potential, and experimented or played with it? Or could she ever have even entertained such an idea about a mere “thing”?

There is a saying that, “A human owns a house, a house owns the human" Humans own a house after taking the initiative to acquire it. But the human who bought the house cannot carry or move it. The house does nothing, it just stays there with an air of deep composure. The human can come and go freely, but in the end the human goes back to the house every day, obediently. Now the perspective has changed, as if the house keeps the human obedient, and the human loses his or her initiative to the house.

FERAL FLAIR clothing is rather loosely tailored and the garments are not too eccentric, but it's also true that not everybody looks good in FF clothes. The clothing may require customers to be in fairly good shape, and the designs of our prints are so particular that they don't suit everyone's taste. FF clothes are by no means difficult to wear, nor are they necessarily easy to wear.

Of course I know that clothes don't care about their shape on a body and that anybody, no matter who they are, is the ideal type...

Then I came to another realization. FERAL FLAIR clothing itself had started to provide a service to customers before I did. They asked customers about their shape (Is there enough space in the FF clothes for them?), their opinion about the design (Do they like FF designs?), and expressed our policy (What do you think about FF’s attitude of creation?). They attract customers who approve of our creations. Then I understood why only those with similar kinds of humanity came to see our shop. I merely provided a service to the customers, taking over their duties.

FF clothing doesn’t flatter customers, and it expresses our creative process with a resolute attitude. Seeing this, I thought to myself, “the way they are taking it is just fine.”

Isshi Kanamaru 10. 2014