After seven years of designing cutting-edge runway pieces, Issey Miyake found it necessary to speak to a broader audience. To do this, Miyake launched ‘Issey Sport,’ a line dedicated to creating ready-to-wear items for urban and athletic settings, in 1977. The line was intended to appeal to the masses and Japan’s large youth population. To aid him, Issey Miyake hired Tsumori Chisato, a fresh graduate of the famous Bunka School of Fashion in Tokyo, as the head designer of Issey Sports.
Together, the pair galvanized what it meant to run a diffusion line. The IS division was extremely popular throughout the 80s leading to Chisato’s breakthrough as an individual designer. Forty years later, the Issey Sport line is still highly coveted amongst Miyake fanatics and has seen a recent resurgence over the last decade.