Having been born in Paris and trained in fashion at Parsons in New York, Julien David first worked at Narciso Rodriguez and Ralph Lauren Purple Label womenswear before settling in Japan in 2006, starting his own brand the following year. In just five years, David went from a capsule collection of silk scarves, followed by coats, to a full collection of womenswear in 2011, then menswear, finally topping off 2012 by winning the prestigious 2012 ANDAM fashion award, of which the illustrious previous recipients have included Martin Margiela, Viktor & Rolf, Christophe Lemaire and Jeremy Scott. With ultra-hip stores like Colette in Paris knocking on his door, it was high time for the first Julien David bricks and mortar boutique, and Tokyo’s Jingumae neighbourhood is the lucky locale.
From the get go, the clearly monikered austere facade gives a strident indication of the clarity and precision of the collections within, blending as they do a tantalising street smart vibe with fine fabrics and quality tailoring. The modest 650 sq ft concrete, wood and glass showroom is the perfect backdrop to the playful, urban, gritty and assured garments – fashion that uses Japanese textiles and attracts a range of clients whose common denominators are flair and individuality. Don’t miss the chic and simple men’s sneakers – this year’s must-have kicks.