Outfit by Akira Isogawa

Made by Isogawa, Akira in Indonesia, 1999.

Akira Isogawa is one of Australia’s most innovative and successful fashion designers. He is best known for his distinctive east-west fusion clothes mixing traditional Japanese and Asian textiles and forms, with influences from historical and contemporary European fashion. Under his label ‘Akira Isogawa’ he retails through his own boutique in Queen Street, Woollahra, Sydney, department store, David Jones as well as some of the world’s top stores including Browns in London, Barney’s, New York and ...


Outfit, womens, comprising a dress and a pair of shoes, cotton/ glass beads/ silk/ leather, dress designed and made by Akira Isogawa in Australia, beaded panel designed and made in Indonesia, shoes made by Selby Shoes in Australia, 1999.

Dress: tight fitting, mid calf length sheath dress made of cotton. The front is of yellow cotton with a colour printed design of a flowering tree with two birds alighting from branches and two bees buzzing around the flowers. The print is heavily beaded over with coloured glass beads and sequins. The back of cream cotton is cut and pieced together to create an asymmetrical train or bustle at proper left back. The proper right back is folded back and fastened in place with three clear plastic press studs to fit bodice and add to bustle effect. Narrow cream cotton shoulder straps cross over at back. Left back opening fastens with a cream nylon invisible zipper. Machine sewn and unlined.

Shoes: pair of flat slip on womens shoes with square toe made of fine grey fabric embroidered all over in an abstract floral design in red and pink. Flat thin soles and short stacked heels of red stained leather. Lined with beige leatherette and partial inner soles of red leatherette.


Isogawa travels through Asia sourcing fabrics and meeting local craftspeople.The beaded panel on this dress was inspired by traditional Javanese batik and beading and was sourced by Isogawa through a workshop in Bali.

The dress evolved from the beaded panel which Isogawa sought to combine with a dress of unsusual cut. He achieved this by moulding the fabric to the body and pleating it into an irregular bustle at the back.

The beaded panel was made in Bali. The dress was made in Akira Isogawa's studio in Sydney.

This outfit was designed, made and used in 1999.
Isogawa, Akira 1999


The dress was part of Akira Isogawa's catwalk collection for Mercedes Australian Fashion Week 1999. It was worn again by a model for the Fashion of the Year photo shoot and for the parade held in conjunction with the announcement of the Powerhouse Museum Fashion of the Year selection.
Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences 1999


Gift of Akira Isogawa, 1999 Part of the Grand Marnier/Powerhouse Museum, Fashion of the Year collection
29 September, 2000

Cite this Object

Outfit by Akira Isogawa 2017, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 17 November 2017, <https://ma.as/8118>
{{cite web |url=https://ma.as/8118 |title=Outfit by Akira Isogawa |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=17 November 2017 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}
This object is currently on display at the Powerhouse Museum.
Know more about this object?
Have a question about this object?