Wa-Mono or the world of Monika Koizumi
"Monika Koizumi is the creator of the Wa-Mono brand. Her textile creations embellish the active, chic woman who dares to stand out and does not hesitate to take power. The Wa-mono woman loves to travel far and wide and to tell her love of travel and Japan through what she wears. She is open-minded, poised and cultured."
From translation to the creation of the Wa-Mono brand
While working as a translator, Monika took up the habit of creating fashion clothes and accessories to relax.
This manual activity helps her to relieve the stress of a job where clients usually want the work done the day before!
After the success of her belt creations with friends and mothers of students at the International High School where her children went to school, Monika decided to take a short course in fashion design at Esmod, in evening classes.
She took the plunge and launched herself into this activity by creating her own brand.
What does Wa-Mono mean?
Wamono refers to traditional Japanese things.
- Wa ( 和 ) is the character which is used to describe words like peace, harmony. It also refers to Japan.
- Mono ( 物 ) means thing, object.
For example Kimono ("kiru" = to wear) and mono means things that are worn.
Using old kimono fabrics in her designs, she found that this word sums up all her work.
"I would especially like to thank Yoshimi Borne for her help. Without her, Wa-Mono might not have been born! She is a friend who teaches couture in Japan and also works for Givenchy. She was able to pass on to me her demand for quality which has never left me. Others also came to help me in this adventure such as Misato and Koh with whom I still work today. "
The origins of Wa-mono
It is her love for Japan that led her to this country for her studies. She met a native of the country, got married and came back to France with two children under her arm, not without having had the time to discover the magnificent kimonos, obis, and other crafts of this fascinating country by so much beauty and ancestral know-how.
"Japan has always resonated with my upbringing. At 16, I decided that this was the culture I wanted to adopt. Indeed, born in Germany to a diplomat father and having traveled a lot, I wished to find myself in a culture in order to blossom fully. I first discovered Japan through its literature and then read the authors in their original language. This quest led me to study Japanese at the Inalco and then at the University of Tsukuba in Japan. "
An ethical and eco-responsible approach, Made in Paris
Based in Paris, the Wa-mono brand favors short circuits.
It uses small workshops in the Paris region to produce small series and thus avoid any waste linked to large stocks.
Part of its raw material, in particular the fabrics of old kimonos therefore vintage, come directly from Japan. As they are recycled materials, the impact on the environment is less. If at the beginning of the brand, all the pieces of the Wa-mono collections were made of silk, today, they are mostly made of noble materials such as cotton or wool.
"My Tomesode dresses and vintage silk belts are part of a responsible and ethical approach because they can be kept for life and passed on from mother to daughter, like a Hermès square! They are unique pieces, just like the clients who will wear them. "