Destination: a o
There’s a place on a tiny street that I decided to visit in Tokyo this time. Even though it’s in Daikanyama, one of the Tokyo’s best and busiest shopping districts, this clothing store stands quietly in a hidden corner away from all the city noise. The shop name is “ao” and they make clothes with the softest washed gauze.
Gauze is a material that is made of loosely twisted cotton threads, coarsely woven. It has the unique ability to absorb water well, breathe and dry quickly. When double or triple-woven, gauze keeps the warmth on your body because of the air between the layers. This makes gauze not only a perfect fabric for summer season, but also suitable for the chilly weather.
I had an opportunity to chat with the store director; Ayano Kamei. She told me about their brand concept, which is to make clothes that would become the staple pieces of one’s wardrobe, and that they offer new products little by little rather than making fastly consumed products. “We want our clothes to be loved and worn over and over again, and that’s why we keep our collections simple and consistent. If you want to buy the same piece again, you could find them in our store.” It sounds just like my kind of choice of clothes.
AO clothes are all manufactured in Japan. They stick to domestic spinning, sewing and dyeing to offer safe and trustworty quality of their clothes. The fine and transparent single-woven gauze, thermo-preserving double and triple-woven gauze sum up to some 20 variations.
Their colour pallet is based on the natural colour of cotton, a lot of cream, ivory and beige. Their antique furniture, little plants, a pair of old leather boots, every display item seems to have a great story behind in this store with creating a wonderful atmosphere together, comfortable and genuine.
Kamei-san kindly gave me a copy of their very first catalogues and it’s truly beautiful!
10-4 daikanyama shibuya-ku tokyo