Obsession with word-of-mouth finds has become the new luxury behavior. Flair for the obscure, reflecting a taste meticulously cultivated and nurtured with a collector-like obsession, is luxury’s new currency. Today, luxury is decidedly less about having money to buy expensive things and more about having the taste to know what to buy.
Japanese clothing brand Kapital is rife with Veblen goods, and its entire offering is an acquired taste. Its off-the-beaten-path items unmistakably convey the identity of its owner and of those who choose to buy into the brand’s point of view. It also connects with the modern luxury consumer, who is a hobbyist and an obsessive — they can recognize and feel Kapital’s gritty and low-tech aesthetic on a visceral level.