The story behind Bao Bao Issey Miyake’s high-precision ‘Dazzle’ bags

Created using micron-level injection moulding, Bao Bao Issey Miyake’s new ‘Dazzle’ series marks the latest chapter in the Japanese brand’s uniquely recognisable accessories

Injection-moulded polypropylene factory machine
In the factory, injection-moulded polypropylene pieces that will go on to make up Bao Bao Issey Miyake’s ‘Dazzle’ bags – a high-precision new range from the Japanese brand
(Image credit: press)

Multiple iterations of Bao Bao Issey Miyake’s uniquely recognisable accessories – known for their triangular structure and futuristic aesthetic – have been offered by the innovative Japanese brand since 2000, when the line was first launched under Pleats Please Issey Miyake (in 2010, it became its own standalone brand). 

The latest addition to the Bao Bao Issey Miyake family provides perhaps its most technologically advanced approach to the design concept yet. Titled ‘Dazzle’, the new series of tote bags are composed from puzzle piece-like ‘units’ that are slotted together to create theoretically endless combinations (the original aim of Bao Bao Issey Miyake was to create accessories with ‘infinite versatile shapes’).

High-precision design: ‘Dazzle’ by Bao Bao Issey Miyake

Injection-moulding machines in a factory, used to make the pieces for Dazzle bags by Bao Bao Issey Miyake

The injection-moulding machines where each of the translucent ‘units’ are made

(Image credit: press)

These translucent polypropylene units, each identical in shape, are created using a high-precision injection moulding technique (Bao Bao Issey Miyake notes that such is the level of the machinery used, micron-level adjustments can be made to the geometric designs). The pieces are tested together in various forms, ensuring ‘optimum strength and mobility’; indeed, despite a seemingly structured exterior, the bag has a feeling of lightness and remains slouchy in shape like its fabric counterparts. 

‘The unique scalability of the material allows each bag to create infinite shapes, to be flexible, and to be functional as an enduring accessory,’ says the brand of the ‘radical’ design, which it describes as ‘aesthetically contemporary, crafted to suit the ever-diversifying and ever-changing trends of today’.

Injection-moulded pieces that will be used to make Dazzle bags

The various pieces wait to be made into ‘Dazzle’ bags

(Image credit: press)

Bao Bao Issey Miyake sees the future of the ‘Dazzle’ series as one whereby singular pieces can be replaced after damage or wear – instead of replacing the entire bag – while also being customisable (this service was only available in Japan for a limited period during April and May, where unique colour combinations could be pre-ordered and custom-created by the brand).

For now, the ‘Dazzle’ series receives its European premiere in London’s Selfridges, available now both in the department store’s accessories hall and online. Colours, each translucent in appearance, span shades of cool grey, pale blue and orange.

A display of Dazzle bags in various colours

A selection of finished Bao Bao Issey Miyake ‘Dazzle’ bags

(Image credit: press)


Fashion Features Editor

Jack Moss is the Fashion Features Editor at Wallpaper*, joining the team in 2022. Having previously been the digital features editor at AnOther and digital editor at 10 and 10 Men magazines, he has also contributed to titles including i-D, Dazed, 10 Magazine, Mr Porter’s The Journal and more, while also featuring in Dazed: 32 Years Confused: The Covers, published by Rizzoli. He is particularly interested in the moments when fashion intersects with other creative disciplines – notably art and design – as well as championing a new generation of international talent and reporting from international fashion weeks. Across his career, he has interviewed the fashion industry’s leading figures, including Rick Owens, Pieter Mulier, Jonathan Anderson, Grace Wales Bonner, Christian Lacroix, Kate Moss and Manolo Blahnik.