Open Discussion of adults beaming
their lifestyle with Snowy Mountain


GOLDWIN is a skiwear brand for over 50 years which produces reliable products with advanced technologies. Shunsuke Ishikawa has started a fashion brand MARKAWARE this year in addition to the skiwear brand of GOLDWIN with his particularity in “MONOZUKURI.” Products designed by him are very functional and moreover stylish which is perfect for those adults who like to enjoy their life with the feeling of snowboard vibes. Here’s a 1st open discussion featuring stylish and active guys who are enjoying their lives.

Photos: Takashi Akiyama Text: Rie Watanabe

GOLDWIN Interview


GOLDWIN Product Planning
Gen Arai
Born on September 20, 1967

Started working at GOLDWIN in year 1991.
He has worked at outdoor brand of THE NORTH FACE as Product planner for over 20 years. He is responsible for the Ski brand GOLDWIN since 4 years ago. With his experiences, he is challenging to a lifestyle line this season.

Hiroya Nakata
Born on July 17, 1974

He has started working as a Painter after graduating from Musashino Art University, Department of Painting, however, he has gradually moved on to working as a photographer. He set a field in the mountains to become a ski photographer as he was an Alpine skier himself when he was little. He takes photos of skiers and snowboarders riding in addition to beautiful photos of natures.

Shunsuke Ishikawa
Born on July 25, 1969

He is a designer of MARKAWARE, designs casual and urban style products which are very popular to the fashionistas and has joined the lifestyle line as a designer and product planning for GOLDWIN from this season. In private, he goes to Tsumagoi, Gunma for a week every month to stay at a cabin to enjoy the outdoor lifestyle. He is known as a genuine Outdoor lover.

GOLDWIN Interview
GOLDWIN Interview

Things that does and doesn’t change
Spirits of “MONOZUKURI” stimulating the users

Gen (Arai): You might know Hiroya (Nakata), since you’ve been an Alpine skier but ski gear was born to compete so it stands out and is attractive while making the performance look stunning. I myself ski and since I started to work for outdoor brands, I go into the mountains more often compare to the slopes. I love the stillness of the mountains. But now that I am responsible for the ski brand GOLDWIN, I went to the slopes for the first time in a while and am into improving the techniques although I’m nearly 50 years old. I’ve looked at ski from many different angles and felt that essentials of ski are the same even when you climb up the mountains for back country because most of the time you are going down the slopes on your way down. By looking at it from a different angle, I thought to myself that I want to produce something that can widen the fun instead of something just to show off.

Hiroya (Nakata):Exactly! There are so many gaudy ski gears out there… Few days ago when I was watching the Olympics, and got an image of wrestling uniforms were gaudy to emphasize the performance. Many products produced in Japan are gaudy so when I saw the One-Piece (overalls, boiler suit) uniform of Alpine Ski gear produced by GOLDWIN at the exhibition, I thought it was amazing! Also, I’m sure there are different opinions about this but I was shocked when I saw the simple uniform with just a badge which Sweden team was wearing. It was stunning to me.

Gen (Arai): It’s important to show off their gears but I believe that performers themselves should have a concept of “being cool,” or “to show their best performance” instead of just being a mannequin and showing off what they are wearing. I want to produce something that performers with such concept to look stylish while performing. As for the functionality of the gear, from the point of view as outdoor expertise I think it is necessary to produce products with fewer pockets, enhanced protection, improved heat retention function and fewer decorations with lighter jackets and pants.

Hiroya (Nakata):As for pockets, since I’m a photographer I feel that there are necessities at certain place on the jackets and pants, but in the activity field such as back country, it’s important that jackets and pants are light weight and has high technology functions and of course stylish and fashionable items.

Shunsuke (Ishikawa):This time I am participating in this project without any technical knowledge but from the point of view of fashion. There’s a certain scene behind making of clothes and the approach of getting the fashion ideas into the gear in addition to the technical parts is very exciting to me…When I think of the brand GOLDWIN, my biggest theme in this making is how to offer high technical standards into casual clothes…I’m focusing on making fashionable and simple clothes without showing its technical parts since if it shows its technical parts, it will just become a normal ski gear. My goal is to making something that is simple but you notice the technical parts of the clothes when you wear it.

Gen (Arai): Inner down feather of Down Mountain Coat for example, when you first look at it, it’s a simple jacket. But by using superior material, removing thee cold spots, and baffle adhesion instead of sewing the material together, it makes it much more comfortable. For this jacket, we prioritized its feeling of comfort instead of its gaudy or technical looks. More than anything, using this material and technology for the inner parts of the jacket is lavish and makes it super soft and comfortable.

Hiroya (Nakata):It was very stylish and wanted to wear it just by looking at it.

Shunsuke (Ishikawa): This jacket is perfect for someone like you Hiroya (Nakata), and I hope people like you choose to wear them.

Gen (Arai): I think it’s an important step of talking to many users to brush up the products to create and come up with new items. I would like to have a firm and reliable role as a brand and products so that people like you who go to the mountain can use the items in different circumstances. Everyone has their own lifestyle even in certain age groups. I’m aiming to produce products in the near future which can attracts different groups with different hobbies to use the products as their ski gear and or lifestyle fashion instead for only one certain group.

GOLDWIN Interview
GOLDWIN Interview

Trendy design and lifestyle line
Challenge for the ski scene

Hiroya (Nakata): I think it will look awesome if Shunsuke wore the new Denim pants ski gear and enjoy skiing, but if I were to wear them, I would first need courage.

Shunsuke (Ishikawa):Is it okay if I’m falling all over the place in that gear. Haha (lol) I haven’t skied since when I was in college, but I’m thinking of starting to ski again this year. I saw a picture of my friend who is over 50 years old skiing at the Matterhorn Mountain this summer and he just started skiing last season! That picture inspired me very much!

Gen (Arai): Let’s all go skiing! Let’s enjoy ski and drink good Sake… Let’s get back on track…yes I just want to produce items which can expand the fun for adults!

Shunsuke (Ishikawa):Definitely! I want to be part of those who are enjoying their active lifestyle, who loves fashion, enjoys being outdoor during the summer, skiing in the winter with fashionable items.

Gen (Arai): Denim ski wear seems very new but it actually has some what of a history. It’s over 10 years ago when our company first introduced Denim pants by The North Face in Japan. We developed a water proof material in Okayama, used a real denim material for the surface and GORE-TEX for the lining. I still remember when I wore this new denim pants to the slopes, and people looked at me like I was crazy!

Hiroya (Nakata):Yes, like your experience, world of ski has a unique atmosphere which is a bit conservative. Not accepting the new trend; closed atmosphere, which can give a bad impression at times. But when you talk to them and listen to their thoughts and backgrounds, you will understand their passion for ski which makes it more interesting and attracts you to world of ski. In my opinion, it’s necessary and moreover exciting for someone like you with such sense to be taking part in this project since in the ski and Alpine ski world, it’s more important to have the skills instead of what you are wearing. I think there should be some spaces in this world to learn from fashion.

Gen (Arai): We had a background of wanting to make a gear which has the core technologies but outdoor and slope lovers can wear the gears also in the city or while traveling. Lifestyle line is a brand mainly for ski but not getting bound by “ski.”
We asked Shunsuke (Ishikawa) to take in part for this project this time since you have unfettered thoughts unlike me. I’m a technology Otaku, so I think we can collaborate very well for new item “MONOZUKURI”.

Shunsuke (Ishikawa):As I said earlier, for lifestyle fashion, I’m aiming to design something that is simple, comfortable, but with core technologies needed to be used for ski gear. However, design featuring zippers for example to be out of sight so it will look less like a gear.
At the same time, by adding an image of spur here and there, I call it the “spur design” to express the main theme of ski.

GOLDWIN Interview
GOLDWIN Interview

A pair of jacket to enjoy life

Hiroya (Nakata):As I’ve been involved in ski scene for a long time, clothes GOLDWIN produces are in style regardless of ski and lifestyle clothing. I noticed that not just ski gear but lifestyle clothes itself are becoming simple and simple removing different ideas. In that sense, I want to wear the MARKAWARE clothes in reaction from wear technical items all the time since I often work in the mountains. I think being able to enjoy different items are the best.

Gen (Arai): Ski gear has some what of history, so we should respect it and learn from its technology and style. However, you wouldn’t want to wear something that isn’t your taste just because of “certain scene.” In my opinion, you should be able to choose the style which is useful for you and necessary technologies. It’s important to make the image of people to enjoy the gear no matter where you are, at the mountains, at the slopes, while traveling or in the city.

Shunsuke (Ishikawa):I want to be particular about making something you will be able to use daily while not forgetting that main theme of the jacket is “ski.” Down Mountain Coat for example, it has the technology of GORE-TEX but able to wear them in the city, while traveling and of course while you are on the slopes. I hope this jacket will be useful for those who love to enjoy the moments.

Gen (Arai): I basically think that men’s clothes should be used roughly. This Fisherman Jumper for instance, the design is very sturdy so you can wear it for about 10 to 20 years. I tried to coordinate this sweater with the ski gear, and the style was rare and new, I liked it

Hiroya (Nakata):The characteristics of wool are heavy and stiff but it dries quickly, also prevents frostbite while you are at the mountains. So during the snow fall, it’s very understandable that wool is used for the inner liner of the gloves.

Gen (Arai): Ski, Outdoor, fashion…I don’t think there are boarder lines between them. I think it’s important to figure out where it generated from and find where it fits well. So we need to challenge for many possibilities with the jacket like getting those people who used to ski to ski again, or getting people who are interested in ski to start skiing, or just get people to wear the jacket in the city. In addition, I want someone like Hiroya who goes to different places to choose this jacket. We want to keep the playful mind and wide perspective to be connected to different people enjoying different lifestyle such as ski, travel, outdoor, and fashion. years. I tried to coordinate this sweater with the ski gear, and the style was rare and new, I liked it.