Behind The Seams: The Story of Our Hexagon Print
Posted on 14 November 2016
Like many things in life, my journey with MISCHA as you know it today has been a serendipitous one and not without its obstacles. The story of our hexagon print started long before I knew I'd grow up to become a handbag designer and can't be told without a little nostalgia.
One of the first memories I have of an interest in Japanese art and culture was of a book I read at school called Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes. It turned into an obsession with mastering every origami animal possible and much later, an expensive habit of collecting vintage obi and kimono.
In 2004, while working full time, I started a passion project of hand-stitched clutches using my treasured obis. They brought me to do trunk shows around the world and back to Japan to source more and more fabrics. The little girl that wanted to make beautiful things and travel was fulfilled.
By 2008, I wasn't getting enough sleep and more women than ever wanted my obi clutch bags. I can't complain really but something had to give. So MISCHA was born that year and turns eight years old this month. Not having training in design nor business made setting up a fashion label seem like an outrageous idea, and I still think it is. But it's never boring.
After years with beautiful vintage fabrics and growing my relationships with the kimono dealers, the search began to create something iconic that belonged to MISCHA, like all fashion houses had. I took inspiration from women with a shared vision of timeless style and from my own travels. Looking into my photo archives for ideas, I noticed for the first time that nearly 70% of my fabrics had the kame hexagon design in them. It was sitting right under my nose the whole time. (The hexagon represents the sea tortoise shell and is a symbol of longevity.) And that was it!
The hexagon and its inherent symbolism would form the identity of MISCHA. After years and many iterations, I created a basic unit of four interlocking hexagons, the building block of our print as you know it today. We launched the Travel Series in 2010; our first collection to feature the brand's signature hexagon print on coated canvas tote bags.