Loose Styles for Social Media Success THE UTENS OFFICE IP
Website: THE UTENS OFFICE
Category: Apparel & textiles
Stylish and loose-fitting, WEYEP presents three unique garment lines that are heating up social media
Japan’s renowned select clothing shops combine the high standards of Japanese craftsmanship with unique patterns and modern styles. Offering loose-fit, comfortable clothing that’s simultaneously uncomplicated, practical and stylish, Tokyo’s newly established THE UTENS OFFICE enjoys rising support among Japanese actors, musicians and street fashion magazines—as well as growing attention abroad.
Affordable Gateway to Select Shop Attire
A graduate of Bunka Fashion College in Tokyo, THE UTENS OFFICE Director Yuya Moribe spent more than five years handling sales at a select shop near Tokyo’s fashionable Omotesando area before launching his own trademark-pending brand, WEYEP, in early 2015. Designed by Moribe, WEYEP’s extensive lineup includes shirts, coats and bottoms—or, according to Moribe, “all outerwear but accessories”—and is organized around the three concepts of Collection, Standard and Remake items.
Collection items change with the season, released in twice-annual exhibitions. The Standard lineup features all-around popular items with seasonal variations, such as long-sleeved or short-sleeved versions of WEYEP’s signature oversized shirts (the T-shirt line is branded as YEP). Remake items, on the other hand, are based on vintage garments that Moribe sources, modifies and reconstructs according to his own one-of-a-kind inspirations.
This variety, as well as the brand’s affordability compared to typical select shop attire, makes WEYEP highly accessible. “Many people are often turned away when they see the price tag of select clothing,” Moribe explains, speaking at his shop near Yutenji Station just west of Tokyo’s city center. “But WEYEP is a kind of gateway to select shops for young students and first-time customers.”
Overseas Sales Start with Korea
Despite its young presence in the fashion market, WEYEP has already caught the eye of a number of celebrities in Japan, including actors, musicians and even a popular J-pop boy band, who sport Moribe’s designs on social media and in magazine photo shoots. Moribe also extensively shares his products through his own social media, which led to his first overseas connection when they were spotted by a shop selling Japanese brands in Korea.
About 15 percent of Moribe’s overall sales now come from Korea. He is also attending exhibitions abroad in the hopes of finding select shops and distributors for his designs in Taiwan and Viet Nam. For local licensing, he hopes to find a single representative in each country who could serve as the touchpoint for directing local shops and managing merchandise. In five years’ time, he aims to have WEYEP clothing available in five or more countries, with more than 50 percent of overall sales coming from overseas.
A Small, Responsive Organization
As social media and trade shows fuel interest in the WEYEP brand, Moribe’s lean organizational structure gives him the flexibility to explore new opportunities. “Our small size allows us to provide quick response to customers, and makes it easier to respond on a case-by-case basis,” he says.
Nimble, creative and innovative, THE UTENS OFFICE is quick, hip and ready to ship!
Website: THE UTENS OFFICE
JETRO, or the Japan External Trade Organization, is a government-related organization that works to promote mutual trade and investment between Japan and the rest of the world. Originally established in 1958 to promote Japanese exports abroad, JETRO’s core focus in the 21st century has shifted toward promoting foreign direct investment into Japan and helping small to medium size Japanese firms maximize their global export potential.