About Us

The 4649.REC brand was born during lockdown in founder/designer Yumi’s studio in London. During this time of isolation, Yumi began painstakingly disassembling vintage family kimonos her mother had sent her from Japan. The process gave her a deeper understanding of her roots and rekindled relationships with her far-away family.
Now, with 4649.REC, Yumi is encouraging others to do the same.

Our Mission

Bridging people

Our mission is to create a global community where everyone can enjoy traditional garments in a new world.

By creatively repurposing vintage clothing into modern streetwear, 4649.REC is breathing new life into the kimono. Whatever our gender, age, race, social background or place of origin, each of us can add new layers of value to our cultural heritage – one piece of clothing at a time.

Our Vision

Empowering culture and amplifying value

Our vision is to inspire members of minority cultures to unlock their creative and economic potential on a global stage. We’ll show you how to look good while doing good – combining prosperity with care for people and the planet.

Our Values

REConnecting with your roots

  • Care for the earth. We only have one world: let’s look after it. By unlocking the value in vintage clothing, we aim to reduce waste in the fashion industry.
  • Rediscovering forgotten treasures. We want to recover the joy in things we’ve overlooked in the mad rush of modern life.
  • Nurturing connections, between people and within them. The slow fashion movement begins from within you. Sustainability is not just a matter of regenerating and protecting ecosystems, but also regenerating the energy within each of us, what the Japanese call ‘Ki(気)’.

4649.REC gives back a percentage of proceeds to the mental health charity Mind.

Code of 4649.REC

RECYCLE

There are an estimated 800 million kimonos sleeping in the cupboards of modern day Japanese households. Despite the emotional value to their owners, the majority of these precious pieces are sold for next to nothing in thrift stores or even end up in landfill. 4649.REC is committed to responsible consumption and production by giving these pre-loved treasures a new life, releasing their full potential and creating transnational flows of energy and value chains.

RECREATE

We hope our unique upcycling products and services will encourage you to also create something new out of pre-loved clothes passed down in your family – cultivating deeper connections and conversations, and ultimately helping you to live with more compassion and self love.

RECONNECT

In Japanese, 4649 (pronounced ‘Yo ro shi ku’) means “Nice to meet you”. Just like the brand name suggests, 4649.REC exists to REConnect the stories in each precious piece of kimono fabric, giving them a new life, unlocking their beauty and making you a part of their story.

Cultural appreciation, not appropriation

People ask Google frequently – ‘Is it disrespectful to wear a kimono?’ We say absolutely not. We hope you enjoy and feel as proud wearing our upcycled kimono items as we did making them, honouring the artistry and emotional value of these traditional garments.


Our Commitment to Sustainability

Yumi retro photos

“We want to make sure these precious pieces are passed on to people who feel a special connection with them as much as we do”

What’s the story?

The reclaimed fabrics used here are all very personal to the designer/founder Yumi; the vintage kimono fabrics have been passed down in her family for generations, while fragments from 4649’s previous collections are entirely produced in UK by family-run businesses she’s had personal connections with.

Wrapped with love

To extend our commitment to sustainability, our hang tag and packaging are made out of upcycled materials too.

You will receive your items wrapped in recycled Tatoushi (vintage Kimono wrapping paper) or surplus paper/fabric made out of excess materials from our products.

Our branded stationaries are also printed with noissue Eco Alliance

#UpcyclingKi

When it comes to sustainability, it’s important to regenerate our personal sources of energy. We Japanese call it ‘Ki(気)’, the Chinese call it “Qi”, some call it “Prana”and you might simply call it ‘Energy’ – whatever word they use, we want to help people find and engage with your energy through creativity and connections with others. We emphasise creativity and mindfulness with our products, services and especially with workshops – strive not only to upcycle clothes, but also to upcycle our energies, our Ki.

To extend our commitment to sustainability in our Ki, we give back a percentage of proceeds to the mental health charity Mind.

Find out more about our services and workshops here.

Our Sustainability Goals

There are 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) to transform our world set by the United Nations – here’s our focuses:

GOAL 3: Good Health and Well-being

GOAL 12: Responsible Consumption and Production

GOAL 17: Partnerships to achieve the Goal


“Just like our beloved hip hop music has been sampling the classic beats over and over again, we RECycle pre-loved fabrics to be loved over and over again.”


What’s the 4649?

Yoroshiku 4649 was founded by Japanese visual designer Yumi in 2011. Her love of hip hop and quirky Manga culture has attracted attention from the lovers of both subcultures worldwide. Keen-eyed observers will see the “Yoroshiku” message hidden in many places throughout our collection – and that message is all about togetherness. As the brand name suggests, we love saying ‘Nice to meet you’ and connecting with people around the world.

Say #Yoroshiku


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Blog Feature

Upcycling to REConnect with your roots

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