On a recent blustery, rainy Saturday morning in Tokyo, designer Tomo Koizumi is holed up in his miniscule studio — resolutely calm, considering how he had burst onto the fashion scene at New York Fashion Week only two months prior.
The designer’s ambitious ruffled gowns were discovered on Instagram by stylist Katie Grand, who banded with Marc Jacobs to help Koizumi stage his first fashion show in Jacobs’ store. In the weeks since, the Tokyo native has become a new fashion industry darling. Next week he will walk the Met Gala’s red carpet, with a celebrity dressed in his designs. Koizumi’s gowns will also be featured in the Costume Institute’s new show, “Camp: Notes on Fashion,” a theme for which his flamboyant creations seem destined.
“I have to e-mail a lot now, I have to manage the looks being shipped around the world, I have to arrange shoots — it’s going crazy for me,” Koizumi told WWD in his studio, wheezing through hay-fever allergies.
While a portrait of success from the outside, Koizumi works with little industrial infrastructure: He has no employees and works out of the small living room in his sister’s Nakameguro apartment. No more than 100 square feet, the room