Tokyo-based Rats draws heavily from classic Americana, with motorcycling and rock ‘n’ roll styling key inspirations for the label.
For many decades now, Japanese fashion has been heavily inspired by Americana. So much so, in fact, that Japanese Americana is now well regarded as a standalone thing: classic styles like workwear, military garb and sportswear elevated through premium craft and a meticulous approach to details.
That deep appreciation is especially true if you shine a light on a specific area in Tokyo, Ura-Harajuku — a plethora of iconic labels have blossomed out of the Ura-Hara district, with all of them sharing a passion for Americana-inspired clothing.
Rats, a label which is heavily connected to that district, is no exception. A lot of it comes down to the brand’s founder, Katsutada Mano, and his heavy involvement in the Ura-Hara scene — Mano is a former Ura-Hara bar owner, which was frequented by designers, musicians and actors who all served to inspire his label.
The district’s aesthetic shines through with the clothing Rats creates, with Americana being a key theme running throughout each collection. Clothing leans in on the motorcycling and rock ‘n’ roll culture so often associated with Americana — thanks in part to Mano’s love of both — with things like rebellious graphics, denim and check flannel all a big focus for the label.