American designer Thakoon Panichgul tells documentary director R.J. Cutler what he thinks of American Vogue editor Anna Wintour in the recently released documentary, The September Issue: “Oh my God, she’s like…Madonna.” Though singer Madonna’s divinity is questionable (depending on who you ask), Panichgul’s appreciation for Wintour’s ongoing support and guidance is not.
After receiving the acclaimed fashion editor’s approval, the New York-based designer is pursuing a new project. He recently accepted a position as creative director for Japanese fine jewellery company Tasaki. The 55-year-old company does both high-end bridal and everyday pieces in mostly pearl. Consider the fact that Mikimoto gets their pearls from Tasaki. That’s how grand the company is.
A translation of the Thakoon aesthetic into jewellery might be a flowing strand of pearls, a nod and wink to one of his enthusiasts in the White House.
Panichgul, whose clothes are usually loose and drapey with a feminine palette, has never ventured before into the world of luxury jewellery. But ever since first lady Michelle Obama wore his Radzimir kimono dress during her husband’s presidential nomination acceptance speech last August, his star keeps rising to new heights. In October 2007 he collaborated with Italian accessories label Hogan, but that’s about it for previous jewellery ventures. The Hogan by Thakoon collection consisted of about 11 ready-to-wear pieces, nothing new in this retail climate of quick diffusion lines and a certain keenness for designer collaborations.
Tasaki, which has stores primarily in East Asia and some head offices in Europe and the US, is excited to have Panichgul take the reins. “I’m looking forward to offering our customers Thakoon’s talented interpretation of fashion,” Tasaki’s chief executive officer, Toshikazu Tajima, tells WWD.
The first collection of Thakoon for Tasaki will be unveiled in February at the reopening of the company’s five-story flagship in Ginza. Whatever Tasaki by Thakoon looks like, one thing’s for sure- it’s under divine protection coming from the fashion deities. One in particular works for Vogue.