Think of the words Romance Was Born and inevitably a few wacko fireworks will go off in your brain. That’s the magic of Luke Sales and Anna Plunkett. So it’s no surprise that ever since the duo made friends with Tokyo-based crafter, designer and creative wunderkind Ebony Bizys, an eventual collaboration was on the cards.
A past life as deputy art director at Vogue Living led Bizys to channel her talent for craft into various creative projects. At the forefront is her successful blog Hello Sandwich, which diarises her life and creative output in Tokyo. “We have always loved her style of craft-making in an arts sense. She has a really subtle way of making the simplest things and ideas ornate,” Plunkett says.
The result of the collaboration is Kawaii Hawaii, Romance Was Born’s Spring 2013 collection. Fusing Japanese sensibilities with a Hawaiian twist, the collection takes the ceremony and shapes of cultural Japanese dress and combines them with the hectic colour of 1950s tiki culture. Plunkett describes the story behind the collection as “Japanese rockabillies on a tropical holiday”, with silhouettes taking a 1950s turn and pleated details and yokes adding a more traditional flavour. A hefty dose of Mai Tai is injected through the raffia, tie-dye and tiki totems spliced throughout.
Bizys’ contribution comes in the form of the vivid prints splashed across the range. Her obsession with paper and paste has been employed to create the prints, with Japanese influences splattered throughout the palette of red, blue, pastel, polka dots and painterly patterns.