Needles - Japan meets American vintage
Table of Contents:
What is Needles?
Founded by Keizo Shimizu in 1997 under his Nepenthes umbrella, Needles is a brand fusing vintage Americana, military and sportswear together. The Japanese label takes inspiration from American-made products and films, their famous butterfly logo being a reference to Steve McQueen’s tattoo in Papillon (1973). Made in Japan, Needles collections are characterized by their high quality and detailed designs with a distinct Japanese touch, often utilizing vivid colors and an avant-garde approach to patterns.
What kind of products does Needles make?
• American vintage-inspired clothing through a Japanese lens
• Mostly Made in Japan
• Popular subline Needles Sportswear making tracksuits featuring butterfly logo
• Bold patterns and vivid colors as well as classic and toned-down pieces
• Eclectic set of influences from American and Japanese culture to historical magazines
• Rebuild by Needles offers a unique take on repurposed vintage garments by splicing different ones together
A brief history of Needles
Son of a movie theater-owner, Keizo Shimizu grew up watching western films and became interested in American culture. A “Made in USA” catalog then provided him with a detailed look at authentic American fashion, solidifying his love for clothing. As a result, Shimizu launched Nepenthes in Tokyo in 1988. Initially a distribution company importing American brands, it soon expanded to include retail operations and opened offices in the United States as well. When globalization made finding quality American-made products a lot rarer, Shimizu decided to start his own brand in Japan called HOGGS in 1995, while his Nepenthes partner Daiki Suzuki moved to the US to run the American side of the business and launch Engineered Garments later. Due to a trademark dispute however, Shimizu was forced to shutter HOGGS soon, and created Needles in its stead in 1997.
What is Needles’ cultural relevance?
As a brand that has always looked to cultural sources of inspiration, its first ever item being a simple loose-fitting suit jacket inspired by one Miles Davis wore in the 60s, Needles turned from Tokyo’s bestkept secret to modern cool-kid uniform. The daring yet calculated aesthetics have found an audience in some of today’s biggest fashion icons like A$AP Rocky, whose AWGE imprint has collaborated with Needles multiple times, or Verdy and his Girls Don’t Cry brand, who also joined forces with Shimizu for exclusive products. These cross-cultural partnerships, especially the one with A$AP Rocky, have made Needles a hot commodity well beyond its usual audience of Japanese fashion enthusiasts. However, Shimizu insists, that the core of the brand is and will remain the same.
Where to buy Needles in Hamburg?
If you're searching for a place to buy the newest collections of the brand needles in Hamburg, then we've got some great news for you: come and visit us at our local store at the Virchowstraße 2 (Hamburg - Germany). Pick, try & buy your favourite needles pieces directly in store!
Discover our most popular needles collections: