Yohji Yamamoto was born in Tokyo and grew up working with his mother for her dress tailoring business. At first he earned a degree in Law, but after graduating it was his mom’s tailoring work that led him to study fashion design at the Bunka Fashion College, eventually graduating in 1969. After discovering fashion from his mother at a young age, Yamamoto has now been revered as a master tailor known for his experimental interpretation of the Japanese aesthetic. The first Yohji runway shows were held in Tokyo in the late 70’s and he eventually had Paris and New York debuts during the early 80’s.
These first fashion week shows drew in large crowds and Yamamoto began to gain traction in the press. By the early 90’s Yamamoto had developed a dark avant-garde lifestyle that was extremely appealing to many; Long draped dresses, almost sculptural jackets, and large hats are all staple pieces to both his mens and womenswear lines. Yamamoto does not design his clothing based on any trends in fashion, he simply uses his own inspiration and outlook to make his ideas come to life. Alongside both Yohji Yamamoto Mens and Womens collections and sub-label 'Y’s', 'Y-3' was created in 2003 acting as an experimental sportswear line. Yohji Yamamoto is the godfather of Japanese fashion in a sense, paving his own lane, doing what he does best, and not veering off track, which is why he is such an emblematic fashion designer.