Hardware and fastenings company YKK was founded in Japan in 1934 by Tadao Yoshida, with Yoshida Kogyo Kabushikikaisha its full title. Today, it's one of the best known acronyms in fashion, the backbone of brands and designers internationally who rely on the manufacturer to fasten their clothes – physically making them wearable, or – as part of their art - jewellery or accessories. Operating in more than 70 countries worldwide and employing over 40,000 people, YKK not only produces zips, but also the machines that make them and even many of the raw materials that go into zips, such as the polyester and brass that make up the tape, teeth and sliders.
Dazed and YKK have a shared passion for creativity. Both are synonymous with supporting young talent and helping them on their journey toward becoming tomorrow's establishment. So instigating a project together building on this was an intuitive step.
The result is New Breed, a showcase of fresh fashion and accessory talent using YKK's hardware in diverse ways. Defined futurism by Yuima Nakazato; sensitive colour by Alexandra Kiesel; the handmade and armour-like by Rob Goodwin; modern empowerment by Julien Fournié; clean and urban by Alexandra Moura; tough glamour by Tomasz Donocik; new tailoring by To Long-Nam; surreal luxury by Oliver Ruuger and a playful take on leather goods by Laura Amstein.
Each creative has learnt from the fastenings company, but equally, YKK has been challenged by these new talents, pointed towards new possibilities and new ways in which hardware can evolve.
Visit the New Breed site to learn of each designer and more relating to YKK's philosophy of innovation.