Rei Kawakubo presents her soldiers of peace, a mini military parade for peace, love and empathy.
Make love, not war. It seemed to be the straightforward message at Comme des Garçons, where straightforward messages are a rarity and you’re usually always wrenching your brain to figure out the meaning of things. When it came to the most important message in the world, however, Rei Kawakubo was happy to simplify things. With a big nod to the uniform of the King’s Own Scottish Borderers, the designer sent out mini parades of soldiers, re-appropriating the war connotation of the military costume to stand for “peace, love, empathy” as the graffiti on one of them read. Combat elements appeared throughout the collection, in the layered netting of coats and a black-on-white print that kind of resembled magnified barbwire. It never got too severe, however, thanks to contrasting components such as leopard featured on the backs of jackets, bonkers over-dimensional crakow shoes, and high rockabilly hair, which only helped to cement the defiant, peacefully rebellious attitude of Kawakubo’s ‘Soldiers of Peace’, as it said on another jacket. Make that change.