nanamica: Unified Utility
We take at look at how nanamica combines heritage menswear with high-performance sportswear to create "standard wear for the current age."
With deep roots in the outdoor apparel industry, it would be a natural assumption that performance and functionality are core focuses for designer Eiichiro Homma.
Having cut his teeth with two industry stalwarts, designing for Goldwin in the 1980s and eventually overseeing Helly Hansen’s expansion into the Japanese market, Homma is a certifiable expert in high-performance sportswear. Deep knowledge of textiles and an acute understanding of the physical demands of the outdoors are fundamental to the designer's approach.
However, upon deciding to go it alone in 2003, a vital distinction was made between his past and present work. Where Homma had previously designed clothing geared towards skiing and sailing, prioritizing performance over aesthetics, he now sought to engineer pieces that married both qualities in equal measure, bringing heightened functionality to everyday life without sacrificing form.
This was achieved under the banner of nanamica. Translating to ‘house of the seven seas’, the brand’s nautically influenced name reflects its founder's love of the outdoors, whilst portraying a sense of unification – indicative of an aim to provide functional clothing for all walks of life. A strong thematic connection to the ocean is also made evident through a colour palette often featuring shades of blue, alongside repeated motifs such as Breton stripes.
In keeping with its founder's appreciation for performance textiles, nanamica clothing habitually employs technologies such as GORE-TEX and COOLMAX, though these are typically combined with more tailored, European-inspired silhouettes. An appreciation for classic menswear is highly evident through Homma’s design work for nanamica, with traditional overcoats, blousons and two-piece ensembles becoming seasonal staples for the brand, alongside more contemporary styles such as down coats.
The reinvention of heritage-inspired silhouettes into functional daily wear is perhaps best encapsulated through the nanamica ALPHADRY Club Jacket and its matching trousers. Utilizing proprietary fabric technology to keep the wearer cool, comfortable, and dry, the brand technically elevates the traditional two-piece whilst retaining the integrity of a timeless aesthetic.
It is through finding a midpoint between the worlds of high-performance sportswear and heritage menswear that nanamica has established itself as a highly reputable label – not only in its homeland of Japan but internationally. As well as providing technically minded updates to classic styles through its seasonal collections, the brand also maintains an outdoor pedigree through its continued work on The North Face’s fashion-focused Purple Label.
Continuing to gain reverence and respect in today's climate of outdoor-indebted fashion, the brand's popularity has snowballed, seeing it become an essential name for those with an interest in functional fashion, understated essentials, and considered, high-quality garments.
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