Hanae Mori, a Japanese film designer, died at the age of 96
Her office announced on Thursday that the designer Hanae Mori had passed away. She was noted for her delicate characteristic butterfly designs, as well as several cinema styles and the wedding gown worn by Japan’s emperor (Aug 18). She lived to be 96.
Mori came to represent not just the advancement of Japan as a contemporary and stylish nation but also the advancement of the working woman. According to the Hanae Mori Office, she passed away on August 11 in the comfort of her home in Tokyo, a few days after acquiring a low-grade fever. A medical professional had gone to her house to do an examination, but they were unable to determine the reason why she had passed away.
When Empress Masako wed Emperor Naruhito, who was then the crown prince, in 1993, she wore a wedding gown designed by Hanae Mori that included rose-petal motifs all over the dress. Mori was responsible for the design of the costumes used by the flight attendants of Japan Airlines, the bank clerks, the high school students, and the Japanese national team at the Olympics in Barcelona. The outfits were not flashy like her creations for the runway; rather, they were tasteful and professional, which was fitting for the duties that they played.
Mori’s goal was to instill a sense of self-assurance and dignity in those who wore her designs by promoting the philosophy that “You feel nice, no matter where in the world you wear them.” Her scarves and umbrellas, which were frequently adorned with colorful butterflies and served as a status symbol among working women, were known for their unique designs.
She was a pioneer of a group of Japanese designers that became recognized internationally and founded her studio in 1951. Her designs are known all over the world. Her debut exhibition in New York in 1965 was hailed as a “East meets West” event by the press.
In 1977, she launched her eponymous fashion house in Paris and went on to establish a global empire that included fragrances, handbags, and publishing in addition to the fashion industry.
In the 1950s and 1960s, Mori designed costumes for hundreds of Japanese films, dressing star actresses like Mie Kitahara, Sayuri Yoshinaga, and Shima Iwashita in some of the most renowned cinematic pieces that were produced during that era. Mori is known for incorporating traditional Japanese elements, such as the kimono, into his designs.
Those who are interested in fashion are also familiar with the lavish outfits that she fashioned for the singer Hibari Misora. She also designed for the opera and the Noh theater, one of her opera designs being Madame Butterfly, which was performed in Milan in 1985. She was presented with the Legion of Honor medal by the French government in the year 2002.
According to the office of Hanae Mori, she is survived by two sons who each own their own business, a daughter, seven grandchildren, and several great-grandchildren. Her husband Ken Mori died in 1996. Her grandchildren Izumi Mori and Hikari Mori are fashion models. A funeral service was held privately for immediate family members. There is a possibility that a public memorial service may be held, although the specifics have not been determined.