Home > Uncategorized > Not for sure what to think of thisChanel-designed armor

Not for sure what to think of thisChanel-designed armor

All samurai fashionistas must wear Chanel-designed armor photo

While Glorious Nippon’s revived interest in its samurai history may have been triggered by pop culture schlock that is everything but realistic, but one cannot deny that the so-called ‘samurai boom’ has produced some positive results, among the most interesting of which are these suits of traditional armor, created by artist Tetsuya Noguchi at the behest of luxury brand Chanel. That’s right. CHA-f*cking-NEL.

But what’s best about the armor isn’t its branding, which seems to be restricted to the presence of the iconic Chanel logo where a samurai’s mon heraldry would be, but by how accurate it really looks. Just taking impressions from my copy of Stephen Turnbull’s excellent Samurai Sourcebook, this suit would not look out of place on a Sengoku battlefield or in an Edo-period military review.

The suit itself seems to be of the standard dou maru style, which was more convenient to move around in than the box-like yoroi. The style became popular as the samurai’s role in combat evolved from mounted archery to shock calvary and on-foot combat. This is also shown in the presence of shoulder and arm protection on both sides, rather than leaving one arm uncovered (so as to draw the bow).The suit is laced in the sugake odoshi, a more loose pattern that came into favor later in the sengoku period, as the closely-laced kebiki odoshi grew very heavy when made wet. 

As for the Chanel-branded rabbit-ear crest, it looks positively reserved when compared to the ostentatious helmet crests of actual samurai, including Date Masamune’s famous crescent moon and Sanada Yukimura’s antlers.

This is all wonderful, don’t you agree?

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