Sometimes, collective talent runway shows can be quite time consuming, and you can often sit there thinking about what to have for lunch, however, some of these shows are not just inspiring, but they show fashion as it should be – fun, flirty, bold, experimental, and most of all – non conformist! This is largely because they have not yet had to listen to consumer feedback on what would improve sales, and thus make their collections more commercial – thus allowing the designers more creative freedom.
Of these amazing collective runways, is Taiwanese Collective FJU Talents, who presented the SS19 collections of three brands at Fashion Week this year – and our favourite of the three has to be Yi Hsuan Wang.
The Taiwan Chang-hua based Yi Hsuan Wang graduated from FJU in 2016. His graduate collection was in the short-list of the Beijing International Youth Design Competition. He also creates costumes for designers and special events in Taiwan. He specialises in transforming traditional temple culture, and bringing it into the modern fashion aesthetic. The facial totem of Taiwan’s parade formation- “Ba Jia Jiang” inspires his SS19 collection. Wang has created a modern yet three dimensional twist of the traditional facial totem which can be seen throughout his new SS19 Collection.
The bold striking reds and blacks, contrasted against the crisp white colours really caught our eye, and we feel this play with 3D creations and shapes is really the way fashion is moving as a new form of expression.
The other 2 designers who showcased, also had strong points of view and are definitely worth mentioning.
Ming Jo Hsieh – Ming Jo Hsieh and graduated from FJU in 2017. She is well known for combining social issues and art within fashion. Her graduate collection was officially selected as one of the best three graduate fashion collections in FJU. The brand also showcases collections during NYFW in addition to London. Her SS19 RTW Collection is inspired on scavengers in Taipei. Materials such as cartons, newspapers, and plastic bags are transformed as prints and details seen throughout the collection. Oversized silhouettes and multi-color prints along with drawstring and wrinkled details, raise the question about the traditional definition of beauty.
There was something about these designs that brought a feeling of nostalgia to me, perhaps it was the red and white plastic bag looking fabric that reminded me of an old corner shop where we bought penny sweets from and they served them to us in a red and white stripe paper bag.
I can see these pieces translating from editorial into the commercial markets in a much more fluid way than the other two brands that showcased, and I for one have seen a few shirts that I would love to wear myself!
Kai Ting Chen – Born in Taiwan Taipei in 1995 she is a recent graduate of FJU’s Textiles and Clothing Department. Her signature design is all about unexpected shapes and textiles based on skillful pattern making & draping techniques. Her SS19 collection is inspired by iconic Chinese drama film “City of Life and Death,” and the struggles faced by the army within it. The menswear collection deconstructs military uniforms with historical newspapers prints of the war in Nan-King 1937. The conceptual collection is a reminder of people who do not forget the cruelty of war and treasure peace and unity, a value that should be present in more of mankind.
This was a new take on menswear, and the increase in volume with each look was certainly a unique idea for a runway show. Do we think we’re going to see men walking down the street in some of these designs? Not likely – but is this an interesting concept that could filter down into a more commercial design? ABSOLUTELY!