Forget Memoirs of a Geisha; kimonos have migrated from the realm of the exotic to the wearable. Beautiful Soul, an eco-luxury label based in London, is refashioning vintage Japanese kimonos into modern, occidental silhouettes with an Asian twist. So it’s only fitting that the inspiration for spring is another classic East-meets-West mashup: Madame Butterfly by Giacomo Puccini.
Founded by Nicola Woods, a graduate of the London College of Fashion, Beautiful Soul debuted in November 2009 with the lofty goal of proving that fashion can be sexy, sustainable, and sustainable. Woods must be doing something right, because her label received the Ethical Fashion Forum’s Innovation Award just months after it launched. Plus, international models Lily Cole and Gabby Young are said to be fans.
Besides vintage kimonos, “Miss Butterfly” includes Ahimsa silk, vintage saris, and organic jacquard.
In addition to vintage kimonos, “Miss Butterfly” also comprises Ahimsa silk, vintage saris from India, fair-trade organic jacquard, and bamboo jersey. Fabric scraps are used as fasteners and embellishments, so nothing is wasted.
If that’s not enough to bring you instant zen, consider that each piece is consciously manufactured in London with a registered women’s project, improving their lives through ongoing training and employment. “I am a perfectionist and manufacturing is extremely important to me,” says Woods.