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Introducing Issey Miyake Kuro

Introducing Issey Miyake Kuro

The work of one of the most influential designers of the century, Japan’s Issey Miyake, the premise of the Bao Bao bag design is simple: “shapes made by chance.” The idea is that the Bao Bao’s interlocking, geometric design allows it to transform and change as it moves, is filled up, and is put down.

Created by fixing small triangles of multi-layer polyvinyl and jersey to mesh fabric, the Bao Bao bag is both an experiment in conceptual design and a fashion statement.

Kuro W Face Bag

Issey Miyake’s latest iteration of the idea is ‘Kuro’ – a mash-up name inspired by the Japanese words for "black" and "professionalism.” This range of practical carry bags calls on newer, tougher materials and is geared predominantly towards the morning commute.

Originally conceived as a “sports” line, the Kuro range is made from a very tough, crispy, secret-recipe material that combines resin and jersey.  Conceptually, these bags draw on Issey Miyake’s obsession with geometry and efficiency, and to architect Frank Ghery, who explored ‘shapes made by chance’ in building design, and adapted this concept into the handbag’s namesake: the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain.

Kuro Liner Backpack

Kuro falls under the now-famous ‘Bao Bao’ umbrella – the first of which was released on the catwalk as the ‘Bilbao bag’ alongside  Issey Miyake’s signature Pleats Please collection. The response was swift and sure. This was something the design world had never seen before, and they loved it.

Miyake has dedicated his life to experimenting with fabric and construction.  His design philosophy centres around the idea of only ever using one piece of cloth, and his 1999 APOC collection (an acronym for A Piece of Cloth), was just that: whole garments made from single pieces of cloth that had been modified – but not by cutting or sewing.

Kuro Sling Shoulder Bag

Following the design mantra: “roll it, fold it, lay it down and hold it”, Bao Bao bags are like 3D origami puzzles that have been designed to both withstand and transcend everyday use – whether its owner is travelling, working, or sipping champagne.   Each prototype is thoroughly road-tested by Issey Miyake staff before going into production – which means the Bao Bao is both feat of both artistic ingenuity and practicality.

Described as “a perennial favourite among architects and designers” (Dezeen), the multifaceted Bao Bao bag is one of the world’s most distinctive and mysterious inventions. And Kuro takes the premise to its extreme. 


Shop Issey Miyake Kuro online here and discover limited edition colours in store at:

Sorry Thanks I Love You
Shop 2, Ground Floor, No 1 Martin Place


Sorry Thanks I Love You
Ground Floor, No 5 Martin Place
(enter via 120 Pitt Street)