An interview with Keiko Seya about SS24 Siwa Oasis

An interview with Keiko Seya about SS24 Siwa Oasis

Speaking with Keiko Seya about SS24 Siwa Oasis

Keiko Seya is one of the designers we recently discovered. Her work and attention to detail made us interested to know more about her and her vision. That's why we have recently interviewed her.


LCM: Since launching your label in 2017, you've distinguished yourself by seeking inspiration by traveling to unique locations all over the world and using extraordinary materials, often also from the region that you are traveling to. Could you share where your journey in fashion began and what influenced you to take inspirations from different areas?

Keiko: When I was little my mom used to make me all my clothes from my coat to my underwear. We often went to the fabric shop together to chose the fabric I wanted, then we would do fittings. As I grew up, I would look at pictures and magazine to chose the design I wanted her to replicate for me. Thatʼs definitely how my journey in fashion began. At the beginning, I travelled because of my curiosity, I wanted to learn new things. As I discovered new places and new cultures, Iʼve also started discovering a new way of valuing things. Like a new wind blowing, refreshing and stimulating. Now I think this feeling is what keeps me going.

LCM: How do you go about finding these places, and what common thread do they share that attracts you to them?

Keiko: I think the places I chose always start from a feeling, an interest that grows within me at some point. Whenever youʼre interested in something, youʼre more keen to hearing, reading or seeing things that relate to it. Itʼs not really that
youʼre suddenly more told about it but more that you are paying attention to it
because you are seeking it.

Seya SS24 Siwa Oasis

About Spring Summer 24 Siwa Oasis

LCM: The Faroe Islands' landscape was a significant inspiration for your Autumn/Winter 2023 collection, the Siwa Oasis is the inspiration for your Spring/Summer 24 collection. Can you explain the differences of these areas for your creativity and creative output as a designer?

Keiko: Both Faroe Islands and Siwa Oasis are places where nature dominates the life of the location. Faroe Islandsʼ nature was topping human life, humans live at the pace of nature in Faroe and not the opposite. Siwa Oasisʼ nature echoes with the deepest part of the human being, humans and nature make one.


LCM: Your SS24 collection showcases a unique array of materials, each with their own story and origin, like the recycled material from India enriched with Milk Protein, the glimmering Yangyanagi with persimmon-dyed threads on an indigo base, and the Awa Shijiraori, a traditional Japanese seersucker. These materials are not just unique but also highly functional, offering qualities like skin non-adherence and water absorbency, ideal for summer wear. This selection is unlike anything I've encountered in my experience with over 50 designers. Could you share with us where you got your knowledge and inspiration from with regards to natural materials/dyes and for discovering and selecting such interesting materials?

Keiko: Iʼve always had a strong interest for fabrics, a little like ceramics or food. Iʼve also worked as a stylist for years which allowed me to touch and feel a lot of different pieces of great quality. I think a lot of my sensitivity comes from there. Now, my interest is really taking the lead and I just love to research about fabrics.

SEYA SS24 Siwa Oasis

LCM: The narrative and heritage of the materials used are central to your collection and sourcing materials from diverse geographies is a signature of Seya. How do you ensure that the process of sourcing in that region and finding the materials are actually matching with the quality you want to showcase?

Keiko: Wherever I travel I try to meet as many artisan as I can and I also buy a lot of fabrics which I find interesting. Then putting together the knowledge of the
artisan and the pieces I collected, we work together to create the fabric I want.
Itʼs also a lot of back and forth.

Keiko Seya SS24 Siwa Oasis

LCM: How did the unique history and culture of the North African Berbers of Siwa Oasis influence the designs in your collection? And what elements that are seen in the clothing of the North African culture are integrated in your designs?

Keiko: I was very inspired by the Berbers living in the desert and the attributes of the fabrics they use to be able to co-exist with this raw nature. The lightness, the
colors. Iʼve translated the feeling of the clothing being deformed because itʼs been used for a long time by using bias in Seyaʼs design. I used faded colors as if theyʼve been worn out by the sun. A rough textured feeling as if it was covered by sand. A shape which embraces the wind and doesnʼt stick to the body.


Seya SS24 Siwa Oasis

LCM: The description of the oasis's colors – the blues, grays, and purples – is quite vivid. How did these specific hues influence your choice of fabrics or color

Keiko: All the colors of the collection are inspired by Siwa’s landscape. The purple is the hazed blue sky hovered by a sand storm. Oasis blue, faded grey, salt, are all directly referencing colors I saw there. For the fabric, I used a mesh which reminded me the rough feeling of sand on the skin and fabrics dry like the air of Siwa. All my original fabrics, summer herringbone, washi cupro, I created from the way I physically experienced Siwa.

Seya SS24 Siwa Oasis

LCM: Looking forward, how do you see Seya evolving – are there new directions, locations or innovations you are particularly excited to explore in future collections?

Keiko: That will depends on my mood, places that fit my feeling at the moment, maybe it will be a time, a topic. The direction is free. The innovation I am really looking for is a new meaning of value.