Emi Funayama

A/W ‘24 | Tokyo

March 23, 2024
By Jee Young Park

I had a terrible feeling in the pit of my stomach as I stared at the “New Arrivals” rack in Parigot, a tightly curated boutique located within the luxury shopping complex, Ginza Six. A pair of laser-cut wide-leg trousers modified from look 23 of FETICO’s S/S ‘24 collection, had been on my mind since I saw them a few days ago and now they were gone.

Simply put, they were perfect. The ones I had coveted were in black, with a sheen akin to patent leather but made of lightweight cotton, adorned with corset ties that started very low and ran up the back rise. Seams carved out a shadow of what would be underneath, hinting at lingerie. Someone wanted them more than me and considering how well-stocked FETICO is, I wondered, does someone mean everyone?

Apparently obsessing after one item was not torturous enough. Designer Emi Funayama seemed determined to have us on the edge of our seats, wanton for every piece in her A/W ‘24 collection as well, which showed great care down to the finest detail for her growing clientele. 

I peered at the top made of velvet crafted in Sabae City from Fukui, the centerpiece fabric of this season. It allowed lighter tulle, lace accessories, slips, and gauze shirring dresses to weave in and out seamlessly, while grounding the mood firmly in the colder months. This continued to showcase the lingerie-esque appearance FETICO fans adore and the styling cues to achieve it at the time of delivery. 

The quilted jacket also preserved a body conscious silhouette, narrowing at the waist and accentuating it with a thick belt. Lined with high-performance batting, the jacket will keep you warm and perhaps a few others too, when you remove the sailor collar to reveal a deep V-neck. These well thought out tweaks are sure to fulfill Funayama’s wish and this season’s theme, to create clothes that will be somebody’s “Eternal Favorites.”

Staying true to the particulars of Funayama’s likes and dislikes are central to FETICO’s success. Her taste level allows her free rein to transmute wayward references into sexy, fashionable clothes. Victorian gothic-styled interiors, Wednesday Addams, Edward Gorey’s eerie storytelling, and Hans Bellmer’s erotic dolls could have easily lent themselves to a more pastiche or garish interpretation. In her hands they became velvet ribbon hair clips with just the right number of pearl trimmings, a chocker with stark black and white embroidery, or a leather corset belt--with pockets, of course.

There’s so much to admire in designer Funayama but what I’m most excited about is how she managed to bridge the Doha-Tokyo-Paris gap. It can be difficult to find a delightfully indecent pair of pants to wear when I travel through these cities or a gauzy top that doesn’t tear from its hidden zipper (it happens, even if the price tag promises otherwise) but Funayama has done it. When I decided to buy the puff sleeve knit top and discovered the neat snap buttons that kept the placket in place without awkward gaping, my lust subsided and was replaced with what felt more like love. 

Photo credit: Courtesy of FETICO

Video Source: Rakuten Fashion Week Tokyo, YouTube