Behind or facing the camera, here is the story of a TV show like no other, when Japan comes to meet an original French brand: BUTTONS PARADISE.
So I promise, I’ll tell you all about the behind-the-scenes fashion of a very popular TV show aimed at Japanese people looking for exclusivity and rarity.
But above all, if you are in Japan next April 9 at 10:30 p.m. local time, watch NHK, and the new episode of “Sekai wa Hoshii Mono ni Afureteru”, in English: “The world is full of desirable things.”
And if not, I’ll meet you immediately behind the scenes of the show around my buttons and sewing buckles made in France!
The Sewing Button Call
In early December 2019, while I am in my workshop-showroom, I receive a call from Misa. Japanese in Paris, she is the production coordinator of a Japanese television channel: NHK. I listen to her voice. She is gentle and calm, attentive too. Misa gives me the name of a director: Kazumasa Takigawa-san.
And from the program of this famous director of NHK, she tells me wonders! The NHK program has also a mystery guest. And this guest saw saw my site and my jewelry creations made from rare buttons and buckles. She told the NHK she wants to visit my workshop.
Because yes, BUTTONS PARADISE is all about them! A universe composed of design buttons, haute couture, and colorful buckles. My product offer, button side, is vintage or contemporary. For contemporary models, I design some of them and have them made in France for sewing enthusiasts.
On the jewelry side, I like to create jewelry by diverting sublime vintage buttons and buckles into bracelets, necklaces, brooches and, recently, belts with a very pop arty look! Obviously, the mystery guest of the popular program fell in love with my creations because they are like no other!
Welcome to NHK
If I don’t know this director, I know the NHK TV channel. Its professionalism is no longer to be demonstrated as this channel excels by the quality of its programs. Not for nothing either if I always nicknamed it the Japanese BBC!
So I ask my questions. Misa tells me about a filming project in gestation that particularly intrigues me. Indeed, when she announced the title of the show to me, I found it more than promising: “Sekai wa Hoshii Mono ni Afuretery” which means, “the world is full of desirable things”. How not to be seduced by this evocative title, when I also consider that the button is a “POCC” (Smallest Common Cultural Object for Plus Petit Objet Culturel Commun in French) so desirable and unique!
We obviously share the same vision and the same love for buttons and buckles since he wishes to present my creations during his broadcast. More specifically, Kazamasa Takigawa-san and his team wish to arrive on January 7 in France, and this for 3 days, in order to shoot their report.
The proposition is therefore simple. They absolutely want to make a day of shooting in my workshop-showroom in Paris, and that I can present my creations, my artisanal know-how, share my passion for buttons and buckles with my French Touch.
Of course, my answer was not long in coming. It was with great enthusiasm that I accepted. An opportunity for my brand, BUTTONS PARADISE to have caught the eye of the director and his renowned program!
Because as an entrepreneur and designer, I often have requests but many are flash in the pan. And if I abandoned everything, 5 years ago to create my brand, it is anything but NOT to waste my time.
On the contrary, I look for more meanings in my work, and I need to create with my hands. A vital desire to return to some true sources: the know-how of the button and the sewing buckle. And never, for nothing in the world will I give up my dreams!!!! Like all the craftsmen that we are!
Finally this call came when I am about to be an exhibitor at the Maison & Objet trade fair in January 2020. This means that the timing is tight. But hey, that’s what it means to be an entrepreneur-craftsman. We juggle between all the caps, we run everywhere and that’s what I love!
Then, once Misa’s email has been received about the shooting, I contacted Claudia, my agent. Outstanding communicator, Claudia is also a strategy guru, her job. German by birth, French at heart, she always amazes me with her pragmatism and her acute sense of analysis. She exposes you a diagnosis in right words and sentences just like nobody. But above all, Claudia is full of passion … Besides; she is a true lover of design, style and creativity!
So with Claudia we share the tasks between us to prepare the shooting:
– First make an appointment with Misa for the location
– Imagine also with NHK a discovery scenario of the button and jewelry in Parisian style
– Explain above all the DNA of my brand and my creative profession (natural materials that I work like Galalith or Corozo for my buttons or my jewelry …)
– Finally find three or four exclusively French subjects for the shooting
– My post-broadcast image rights, which I must ensure
Backstage in fashion runway mode
Because contrary to appearances, participating in a TV show requires anticipation.
Besides, I have the impression of seeing myself again at The Royal Shakespeare Company, the day before a general when I was a costume assistant!
Because the staging and the script are loaded ☺
– Present rare, original, unusual and 100% haute couture buttons
– Explain the creation of button and buckle models made in France
– Also create a necklace or bracelet during the shooting
– Staging my jewelry on a Parisian model
– Tell anecdotes but not necessarily my manufacturing secrets…
– And finally, welcome the mystery guest of NHK: THE button specialist in Japan!
In fact, you have to think of EVERYTHING as before a fashion show so that EVERYTHING goes perfectly. And the smallest details make the difference!
D-Day: I put on my jacket dress, leggings and … my Georgia cuff. To tell you the truth, Georgia is my lucky bracelet and one of my favorite creations: a grained red leather strap (in recycled leather) adorned with two superb black and silver Sèvres porcelain buttons from the 80s! Then, head to my workshop-showroom by bike …
8:00 am: arrival of Claudia, my agent and Shinta, model
9:00 am: reception of the director, the cameraman, the sound engineer, the technicians
10:00 am: Shinta goes to Flore’s cafe for a fashion shoot with some of the staff
11:00 am: Meeting the NHK mystery guest …
4:00 p.m .: end of clap after many interviews
The mystery guest, Naoko K.
In summary, what I can say is that I loved this moment. The director and his cameraman’s eye on my buttons and jewelry: their moments of extreme concentration and our giggles too.
Particularly with Naoko Kozaka, the mystery guest on the NHK program. Because with Naoko, it was a very nice meeting.
Besides, we have to believe that we both had a lucky star for becoming accomplices as soon as we met! Besides the fact that we both have short hair (!), we really see that Naoko is passionate about the world of buttons. She considers, like me, that this small fashion accessory is a work of art: varied and timeless styles over the years (and centuries!), limitless creativity, past steeped in history, multiple skills, the grail of Arts and crafts.
Naoko created her brand Co- in the early 2000s in Tokyo. She has also written books on the button.
And if I don’t tell you more about her, it’s that I will talk to you about Naoko soon around a BUTTONS PARADISE event in Tokyo. But that’s another story …
In the meantime, NHK’s flagship show, “Sekai wa Hoshii Mono ni Afureteru” in French, “The world is full of desirable things” will air on April 9 at 10:30 p.m. local time.
Singer JuJu, adorned with a bracelet, an exclusive creation from BUTTONS PARADISE, will present it. So if you are in Japan, on your screens for 45 minutes to discover the most beautiful buttons in France!