Designer shines at Japanese exhibition

Joyce's gowns on display at the Tartan exhibition at the Kobe Fashion Museum, Japan. The exhibition, which will visit five cities, is expected to be seen by more than 50,000 people.
Joyce's gowns on display at the Tartan exhibition at the Kobe Fashion Museum, Japan. The exhibition, which will visit five cities, is expected to be seen by more than 50,000 people.

The work of a Milngavie-based fashion designer will be featured in a new tartan exhibition in Japan, which is set to run for the next two years.

Joyce Young’s work has been worn by heads of state, celebrities and at countless weddings across the world by brides enamoured by her romantic and decadently designed wedding dresses evoking Scotland’s heritage.

The event simply entitled ‘Tartan’, which opens this week at the Kobe Fashion Museum at Hyogo, has been organised by the Kobe Shimbun newspaper, and will have exhibitions at five major cities throughout Japan.

The Tartan tour will display over 150 different types of tartan – everything from tartan shoes to tartan telephones – and will tell the story of tartan from the Jacobite times to the present day. It will stop at Tokyo, Iwate and Fukuoka, and is expected to be seen by more than 50,000 people.

Joyce was first approached by Miki Inamura, a Japanese delegate, from the Kobe Newspaper foundation, over a year ago, who asked if she would design a wedding dress specifically for the exhibition. Within a few months she had designed a specially-made tartan inserted wedding dress as well as an evening gown in her signature Bystorm purple tartan.

Joyce said: “I’m so excited to be a part of this show and think it is a great opportunity for Scotland to attract more visitors, especially people that may be thinking of getting married here. I’ve even decided to add another website to cater for those looking to come and get married in Scotland, and offer links to Scottish five star hotels and locations.

“People from abroad tend to look on Scotland as this wonderful mystical place, full of heather, lochs and whiskies, this exhibition will really help preserve the image of Scotland and help attract more tourists too. It’s a bit like the way we look upon somewhere like Bali, or Sri Lanka I guess.”

Other Scottish designers, whose work is being showcased, are Kinloch Anderson, Samantha McCoach (Le Kilt), Alison Harm, Judy R Clark, Siobhan McKenzie and Howie Nicholsby.