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Manonik is a New York-based art-design studio amalgamating purpose, critical thinking, and craftsmanship. Manonik handcrafts humanistic garments one at a time using the finest and purposeful materials curated locally and internationally. Manonik is the result of critical explorations with materials and innovative textile-making techniques. Through collaborations with small groups of artisans and independent farmers and mills, all materials are crafted to the highest standard of comfort and durability. Every garment, handcrafted for life, is an artistic expression and a showcase of craftsmanship. Yoshiyuki, the artist-designer behind the brand, pours an inordinate amount of time and labor, handcrafting and altering each fabric to single-handedly breathe life into each garment. Manonik represents an alternative approach to clothing, offering genderless, sustainable luxury wear for those seeking beauty, freedom, and comfort beyond the norm.

 
 
 
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STUDIO

 

At the studio, process conceives all designs. Manonik independently developed a weaving technique – three-dimensional pattern weaving – where components of a garment are woven on the loom as volumes, rather than cutting patterns out of a flat cloth. Humanism and spontaneity permeate the processes, celebrating imperfections in the weave, respecting inconsistencies in natural dyeing and painting, and crocheting improvisationally without pattern or stitch counts. When a garment is constructed from a traditional, single layer of cloth, the technique of zero-waste patterning is utilized to use the cloth in its entirety. The processes employed at Manonik reflect the studio’s commitment to critical design and sustainability, taking into account all possible steps of production from farming, to processing of raw materials, all the way through production, to the life of its designs, as well as labor relations, innovation, and cultural preservation.

 
 
 
Singer 31-15, a monolithic iron head, manufactured in 1912.

Singer 31-15, a monolithic iron head, manufactured in 1912.

 
Four-harness loom with two back beams to allow segmented weaves.

Four-harness loom with two back beams to allow segmented weaves.

 
A technical drawing of a jacket with its precise calculations to weave fully-shaped volumes on the loom.

A technical drawing of a jacket with its precise calculations to weave fully-shaped volumes on the loom.

 
A bodice woven three-dimensionally on the loom.

A bodice woven three-dimensionally on the loom.

 
A sleeve with an internal rotation, woven three-dimensionally on the loom.

A sleeve with an internal rotation, woven three-dimensionally on the loom.

 
Improvisational crocheting.

Improvisational crocheting.

 
Japanese indigo plants, at the harvest in Upstate New York.

Japanese indigo plants, at the harvest in Upstate New York.

 
Japanese indigo leaves, stripped from the stem and being dried under the sun..

Japanese indigo leaves, stripped from the stem and being dried under the sun..

 
Organic vat made with Japanese indigo leaves.

Organic vat made with Japanese indigo leaves.

 
Award-winning merino raw fleece from a farm in Upstate New York, before being processed.

Award-winning merino raw fleece from a farm in Upstate New York, before being processed.

 
The view from a farm, Upstate New York

The view from a farm, Upstate New York

 
 
 
 
 

YOSHIYUKI MINAMI

Yoshiyuki, both the hands and the brain behind Manonik, comes from the countryside of Japan where tradition and innovation coexisted in symbiosis. He has a degree in economic sociology from the University of Michigan, a critical study on our economic activities and systems. After a decade of working in advertising as a graphic designer and art director, he embarks on a journey as Manonik to propose an alternative mode of crafting artifacts that transcend the traditional idea of “commodities.” He has been selected to participate in internationally recognized residences at the Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) and the Textile Arts Center. He believes that even an aggression of objects as simple as garments can lead a social and perspective change to bring back humanism in our society. He currently works and resides in Brooklyn, NY.