Kei Kagami is not driven by fame or fortune, rather he creates with a desire to push the boundaries of what seems possible; to challenge our idea of the everyday. Combining his skill as a fashion designer, tailor and architect, his conceptual designs have cemented his place among fashion’s most innovative—it’s been a lifetime in the making.
Kagami was born and raised in Tokyo, moving to London in 1989 to work alongside John Galliano. When the label shut its doors three seasons later, he chose to stay on in London enrolling at Saint Martins College with classmates Alexander McQueen and Wakako Kishimoto.
“I haven’t really achieved anything,” laughs Kagami. “Especially in business. But when FIT museum in New York purchased one of our conceptual pieces for their permanent collection, I felt I culturally contributed to the business of fashion.”
The BBC news remains one of his greatest sources of inspiration when it comes to designing footwear, but he is quick to point out that he is first and foremost a fashion designer. “We rely on our ready-to-wear designs as a business,” says Kagami. “We don’t make any profit at all from our shoe collection. However, it’s important that we keep designing them. It motives our creativity.” And when it comes to creativity, you’d be hard pushed to find a more spellbinding collection as his Hanging Garden Spring/Summer 2015 offering (pictured here). A collection that continues to hold him—and his designs—in the hearts of heavenly heel lovers everywhere. — ANASTASIA RUBIN
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