The Japanese brand has won a year of mentoring and €300,000

Each year at the Louis Vuitton Foundation, a select sample of young fashion designers introduce their brands to a panel of industry figureheads who judge the innovative designs on offer before awarding the coveted LVMH prize.

This year the committee was headed up by a whole host of industry elite including Karl Lagerfeld, Nicolas Ghesquière, Marc Jacobs, Clare Waight Keller, Maria Grazia Chiuri, Jonathan Anderson, Humberto Leon, Carol Lim, Sidney Toledano and the prize’s founder, Delphine Arnault. Amongst the young designers who had to present a 10-minute pitch were the likes of Charles Jeffrey and A-Cold-Wall*; Eckhaus Latta and Kwaidan Editions.

After much deliberation Japanese designer Masayuki Ino and his brand Doublet were awarded the grand prize of €300,000 and a year’s LVMH mentoring. The first non-European designer to win the award was chosen for his innovative use of compacting T-shirts into small parcels that can be packaged within ramen pots, that simply require water to grow them to full size.

“In Japan, they have this amazing knowledge of textiles, and they want to try and do things that are novel – and Doublet felt new, it felt different,” says judge Jonathan Anderson. “For me, what really sold it was seeing a clothing hanger which was actually a compressed shirt covered with a plastic garment bag. You could see that in the Met, and I wanted to buy it.”

Doublet is relatively unknown in Europe and only has one stockist in the UK at Dover Street Market. Expect to see more of the designer though as his humorous clothing infiltrates streetwear. Riffing Lacoste with the placement of an oversized holographic crocodile, or ‘your brand name here’ adorned down the arm of a jumper, Doublet’s ‘fashion with a sense of humour’ is sure to crop up.