Meet Japanese brand Moun Ten
Updated: Jul 9, 2019
For those who are unfamiliar with Moun Ten, could you tell us a little about the brand and your brand values? What age does the brand go up to?
MOUN TEN’s base concept is “Functional & Sophisticated”. We focus a lot on functional materials and details from Sports, Work, Military wear, and we try to create an ideal balance with sophisticated styles & designs. I believe this balance and the quality of our products is our value. Our aim is to create a fresh unisex clothes not only stylish but also functional, which would stay in ones memory even when they get old. We started with 3 to 10 years old kids sizing at the beginning, and now we go up to Men & Women’s sizing as well.
When I first met the brand earlier this year in Paris, I was instantly drawn to the brand because of the innovative designs and shapes seen in the current collection. Moun Ten is designed and produced in Japan, could you tell us what inspired you to start the brand initially?
I’m glad you felt that our designs are innovative! Creating innovative products not only in kids wear but also Men & Woman’s wear is something that we are always trying to achieve.
When we had our daughter, we found out that there are a lot of kids brands that make cute graphics or exaggerated designs which look good when you look at it, but I felt they were not caring enough about comfortability and functionality.
Oppositely, the kids brands that focuses on comfortability and Functionality ware not caring enough on designs or colouring, and it was difficult to find a good kids wear brand that we would like to dress our daughter in.
We personally loved sports, outdoor, work wear, and we thought these styles and philosophies are something needed for kids wear as well; but there were not much brands or products that were focusing on these styles in good quality. And we also didn’t like much the idea separating boys and girls wear. So, this is why we thought we should make kids wear ourselves.
Since we started our brand, our base concept has always been “Functional & Sophisticated”, and mainly my inspirations comes from our daily life with our daughter or simply from the things that I like.
What would you say influences the designs and structures of the clothes in your brand?
We like simple designs than decorative designs, and we especially interested in functional beauty that is created by thinking for the person that will wear it. We are trying to combine these beautiful and thoughtful details and also functions to create a totally new product.
If you were to describe the 19AW collection in 3 words what would they be?
Personally when discovering Moun Ten, I felt like it was very modernist but minimalist at the same time. The style seems very modern and new, and minimal in the fact that I feel like the pieces are such classics, that it can never go out of fashion. Would you agree with this idea? If so could you expand on this and why in todays fashion industry it’s important to have brands like Moun Ten around?
Thank you for understanding our brand! Now we have lot of choice in the kids wear market, but there are too many fast fashion kid brands that work mainly on how it looks and also in low pricing, but we prefer something that they can really love to wear, and this is why we think functionality and comfortability is the important points for kids wear as well as designs.
Loving to wear clothes that “look good” is of course important, but I don’t want to see that the kids are not treasuring their clothes and instead are continuously seeking new clothes.
I believe some part of the personality of the children are founded by the things that they use, and I hope that the children will learn to love or take good care of there belongings by having an experience of owning a product that they truly love.
I personally had this experience and could not throw away the piece even when I could not wear it since it was too small. My ultimate goal is to find our product sold as a vintage piece in the future, then I’ll know that our product was loved by someone.
The quality of your pieces has really been thought about during the process of producing your collection and it is apparent when you have a feel of the collection. Could you talk about the materials used in your brand and the rich quality of the clothes?
The pattern (Cutting) is one of the things we focus a lot on, and in Japan we say “the design lives in the detail” and we always take deep care on small details even for invisible points.
When we create a new style, we always test the product by dressing our daughter and updates the style multiple times when needed.
However, we have to come out with a decent pricing as well, and we often struggle to take the balance of this since just to combine high-quality material and good factory with our design is not enough. Our products may not be cheap, but we believe that the user will understand that it’s worth it.
What's a new, unique piece from this collection that we have not seen before in previous collections of Moun Ten?
Every item is unique for us, but I would say “air blouson” is the most unique piece of AW19 season. We focus to make warm clothes that you almost don’t feel the weight, and the retractable mitten gimmick at the sleeve is a functional detail that shows our base concept well. The pattern itself is actually simple, but the clean look and the easy to use utility is typically the things that we always aim for.
We selected a light weight stretch fabric with water reparent function for the outer shell and a light & soft worm padding, both materials are typically used for outdoor products.
Where are you currently stocked and where can you see yourself as a brand in the future?
So far we do not have our direct shop, and there are 45 selected shops that carries our products in Japan. We just held our first international exhibition at Playtime Paris this January, and we are going to start working with roughly 10 shops around the world including Europe and US.