Kenta Takahashi was born in 1984 and started majoring in modelism in Design & Creation course in 2006. After graduating from ESMOD in 2009, he established NICK NEEDLES. He also opened its shop SONAR, which is also used as his atelier. He taught fashion design in Hakuyoh high school in 2016, and he opened SONAR dressmaking school.
- What made you join ESMOD?
- When I was a student of Hakuoh university in Tochigi, I had friends who made jeans on self-study and making clothing was booming around me, I started a fashion club and organised fashion shows. Then I wished to study fashion in earnest after graduating from high school, and I joined ESMOD summer seminar. Thanks to it, I met Ayumu Hamazaki, who was third year student and currently works for a Britain fashion brand ERDEM as a pattern maker. She told me directly that ESMOD has a nice studying environment, and that made me decide to be ESMOD student.
- What did you gain after entering ESMOD?
- That is surely high-level techniques and strong awareness as professional. That especially fits into modelism, where you learn simultaneously draping and flat cutting. It enables you to become an adaptable pattern maker who can make clothing beyond measurement.
- What were your activities after graduation?
- I immediately launched a brand after graduating from ESMOD in 2009. At first, I was thinking about becoming a patternmaker, but I didn’t have enough skills and that was the next year of the financial crisis in 2008, which made job searching so hard at that time. It led me to think launching a unique brand which challenges conservative creation of existing companies. My brand’s name NICK NEEDLES means “needle to get straight to the point”, and my creation theme is mode, futuristic and unisex. My products are now sold in multi-brand shops such as XANADU TOKYO or CANDY, and my brand have just started being a little bit more recognised.
- What is your future vision?
- Apart from NICK NEEDLES, I’m planning to launch a little bit cheaper brand with less details. The first brand will be more specialised on creative products so that I can balance my creation globally. I also want to put energy on teaching fashion. Now I’m a fashion design teacher at a high school in Utsunomiya, but I will launch a more modern dressmaking school in SONAR of Utsunomiya in April 2018 to teach techniques and how fashion is fun to many people.
- Please give a message to ESMOD applicants!
- It’s surprising how many ESMOD alumni I met after starting my professional career. That shows how ESMOD is highly rated. It’s hard to work in this industry, so you need to study in a severe school to be an excellent designer or pattern maker. Choose your school in earnest for your future.