Until last week, I had never heard of female samurai. Onna-bugeisha, as they are called, were female warriors who fought alongside men throughout the Japanese Imperial army. I was thrilled to find out about them looking at Port Zienna's latest work. Collection No. II was inspired by the power and strength emanated by these women.
I was struck at once by the clothes’ exquisite agility. These pieces are not designed for women who keep quiet and stand still. Graceful and vigorous at the same time, they celebrate the moving person within while elegantly shaping her exterior.
The Brooklyn-based label established by Peruvian designer Francesca Canepa started out with the highly acclaimed Collection No. I in 2017. With Collection No. II, Francesca continues to apply a draping technique. While remaining true to a black and white palette, Collection No. II also includes vermillion stitches and ribbons. Being a prominent shade in Japan, the use of vermillion blends together a traditional Japan concept with a modern minimalist aesthetic.
Port Zienna seeks to create clothes that are timeless and sustainable. As Francesca explains:
The fashion industry should start shifting away from fast-fashion trends and focus on creating long-lasting beautiful quality pieces for every customer.With Collection No. II, the label has definitely taken another step towards this goal.