All images courtesy of BUAISOU

We’re feeling a little blue here at Tory Burch HQ…in the best way possible. To celebrate the opening of our Ginza flagship, Tory partnered with Japanese indigo dyeing company BUAISOU on an exclusive collection of hand-dyed dresses and tunics.

Located on Shikoku – a Japanese island known for indigo production — BUAISOU has helped preserve traditional techniques to create indigo that might have otherwise been lost or forgotten over time. The process, known as aizome, is an artisanal labor of love, passed down from generation to generation. Here, we speak with BUAISOU founder Kakuo Kaji about the centuries-old tradition and how exactly it translates today.

ここ、トリー バーチの本社にとても感慨深い気持ちでいます。トリー バーチ銀座店のオープンを祝って、トリー バーチは日本の藍染職人BUAISOUと共に手染めのドレスとチュニックの限定コレクションを製作しました。

藍の産地として知られる徳島県を拠点とするBUAISOU は、時代の移り変わりと共に激減する昔ながらの素材と伝統技法を守りながら、藍の栽培から染色・仕上げまですべてを一貫して行っています。職人が丹精込めて仕上げた藍染の複雑な工程は何世紀・何世代にも渡って継承されてきました。BUAISOU設立メンバーである、楮覚郎(かじかくお)氏に代々継承されてきた伝統と、それがどのように今日にまで至ったを伺いました。

How did you become involved in indigo dyeing?
When I was 17, I moved from Aomori to Tokyo to study textile design at Zokei University. This is when I first became interested in indigo dyeing. I fell in love with the process and the patience it requires – it is unique compared to other forms of plant dyeing in that it takes significantly more time. It is truly an art form.

What differentiates BUAISOU from other dyeing businesses?
Many companies purchase sukomo, India indigo or synthetic indigo to dye their fabrics. At Buaisou, we are involved in every step — from planting the indigo seeds to producing the dyes to dyeing the fabric.



Traditional aizome producers in Japan went from the thousands in the 19th century to all but six in the 21st… Why is this?
It is an extremely labor-intensive process and alternatives – such as synthetic indigo – have been developed over the years. But there will always be a place for beautiful and unique hand-dyed pieces.

Why is it important to keep the tradition alive?
Aizome has been a part of our culture for centuries. It is a purist art form and I am honored to play a part in continuing this tradition.



What was it like working with Tory Burch?
It was incredibly rewarding. This experience allowed us to step outside our comfort zone. Through trial and error, we worked with the Tory Burch team to create amazingly beautiful designs. It was interesting to see how they embraced pattern and design, and exciting to help bring their vision to life.
トリー バーチとの取り組みについて聞かせてください
非常にやりがいがありました。この取り組みにより、自分たちに馴染みのある方法から一歩踏み出す貴重な経験が出来ました。試行錯誤を経て、驚くほど美しいデザインに仕上げることが出来ましたし、トリー バーチが模様やデザインをどれ程大切にしているかを垣間見ることが出来たのも興味深かったです。彼らのビジョンを具現化することが出来たことを嬉しく思います。

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