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Yohji Yamamoto

Japanese, b. 1943

The avant-garde Japanese fashion designer Yohji Yamamoto has said, “dirty is good.” These three words capture the eccentric designer’s love of a dark and disheveled — yet dapper — look. A master tailor with a distinctive style, he creates everything from coats and jackets to day dresses and evening gowns.

Yamamoto was born to a World War II widow in 1943. By the time he was 26, he had a law degree from Keio University and a fashion degree from Bunka Fashion College. In 1969, he won two Japanese fashion awards — the Endo Award and the Soen Award — which included a round-trip ticket to Paris. 

It was in the French capital that Yamamoto realized the fashion world was changing. A casual aesthetic was replacing formal and classical sensibilities. He soon set up his first label — Y’s — and embarked upon designing heavy-duty sportswear.

Yamamoto launched women’s collections in 1977 in Tokyo, in 1981 in Paris and in 1982 in New York. Their pieces loosened the traditional female clothing silhouette in favor of shapes more typical of menswear: simple cuts, minimal details and generous proportions. In 1983, the New York Times wrote, “Yohji Yamamoto may stand barely five feet tall, but his effect on world fashion in the last two years has been enormous.”

In 1984, he made his first foray into men’s fashion under the Yohji Yamamoto label. In 1994, he was awarded the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Minister of Culture and, in 2002, he became the creative director of Adidas’s Y-3.

Yamamoto’s fashion has been the subject of exhibitions around the world, including “May I help you” in 2002 at the Maison Européenne de la Photographie in Paris, “Correspondences” in 2005 at the Gallery of Modern Art in Florence, Italy, and “Painting and Weaving Opportunity” in 2017 at Tokyo Opera City Art Gallery. In 2017, he received the DFA Lifetime Achievement Award.

On 1stDibs, find vintage Yohji Yamamoto clothing, accessories, handbags and more.

Average Sold Price
$958
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Yohji Yamamoto fashion for sale on 1stDibs.

Find an extraordinary range of authentic Yohji Yamamoto fashion available on 1stDibs. If you’re browsing our collection of unique vintage and designer fashion to elevate your daily look or to introduce new colors to the dazzling formal wear in your wardrobe, this designer’s body of work includes elements of purple, red, blue and other tones. Customers who are interested in this designer might also find the work of Junya Watanabe, Rei Kawakubo, and Comme des Garçons appealing. On 1stDibs, find haute couture, vintage and designer Yohji Yamamoto fashion from top boutiques around the world. Yohji Yamamoto fashion prices can differ depending upon time period and other attributes. On 1stDibs, the price for these items starts at $120 and tops out at $16,052, while the average work can sell for $817.
Questions About Yohji Yamamoto
  • 1stDibs ExpertApril 5, 2022
    Japanese fashion designer Yohji Yamamoto has two very well-known brands. The first is his eponymous brand, Yohji Yamamoto, and the other brand is Y’s. In addition to his two main brands, Yamamoto’s other lines are Pour Homme, Costume d’Homme and Regulation Yohji Yamamoto. His style is often referred to as modern luxury streetwear. Shop a collection of expertly vetted vintage and new Yamamoto clothing and accessories from some of the world’s top boutiques on 1stDibs.

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