Strutting out in style
Young Malaysian designers show they have what it takes to succeed.
MALAYSIANS certainly have a passion for fashion as proven by the recent Malaysia-International Fashion Week (M-IFW). Established as well as budding designers enthralled the crowd with their creations at Pavilion Kuala Lumpur in a starstudded fashion extravaganza organised by Malaysian International Fashion Alliance (mifa) from Nov 2 to 6. The Star is a media partner.
Judging from the popularity of shows such as Project Runway and
The Fashion Show, there is certainly no lack of aspiring fashion designers out there. Malaysia is no different as 10 up-and-coming designers showed off their collections at the grand finals of mifa’s Who’s The Next Designer Search 2010.
Silas Liew, William Sim, Chow Yao Xian, Hyacinthe Kaur, Alan Ooi, Chan Siew Le, Hayden Koh, Michelle Shia, Olivia Koo and Lee Looi Teng all displayed excellent tailoring in their collections, even though some of the designs were wanting in terms of creativity and flair.
Liew started the ball rolling with meticulously designed outerwear. Jackets and capelets were put together with minimalistic chic, weaving heavy suit fabric with elegant design, clearly demonstrating that his was a collection with vision.
Also worthy of mention was Sim’s collection which had metallic chic played out in layering techniques. The rest of the collections were ordinary and predictable, and lacked that extra edge to carry them through to the next level.
Liew bagged the title of Most Promising Designer of the Year that night, taking home the RM10,000 prize.
Collections by seasoned designers Villiam Ooi and New Zealand-based Jimmy Lim took the stage for the Edge Of Season show, accentuating Japanese influences and futuristic themes.
Ooi’s collection tore pages out of the Yohji Yamamoto or Comme des Garçons style files. The outfits were mostly monochromatic, with lots of straps on jackets and tops cut with overhang. Volume was key, further exaggerated by the occasional flaunting of unflattering harem pants.
The liberal use of polka dots, stripes, and black and white solids seemed to reflect Ooi’s attempt to capture the attention of a more avant garde market. His clothes would not be out of place in the artistic communes of London, Paris or Japan.
Lim took the eco-friendly path, using earthy hues on a black and white palette. His models sashayed out carrying oversized satchel bags and sling backs, and some of the tops had interesting knotted sleeve ends, a style which was also employed for the trousers. A standout was a jacket-skirt fusion piece with a sequinned sheer top.
New player Zero to Ten by
designers Yap and Peggy Cheong showed impressive construction and obi-belts were put to good use to emphasise the waist. Appliques were used sparingly and details like ribbing helped to define contours and silhouettes.
Gallo by Thien brightened the afternoon with colours running the riot – from purple to red as well as a generous dose of earthy hues.
Flouncy pants and loose tops were key, and paisley-like floral prints, short skirts and billowy shorts featured prominently.
The final collection saw the debut of new label I Luv Wirda by GLAM and Eh! editor-in-chief Wirda Adnan. Started by her die-hard fan and now, friend Azliny Ahmad to reflect the tastes of Wirda and what she would wear, the gowns were well constructed, colours were bright without being blinding and the “younger” designs were a nod to a younger Wirda.
Under the Bumiputra Designers Association (BDA): Gen X segment, six designers vied for the top place in the Young Designer Awards 2010 finals.
Tee Jing Wen started the show with a blend of ethnic and futuristic, followed by Annette Liew, who worked on a canvas of grey, black and white with splashes of red, resulting in an impressive minimalistic style.
Knitwear was Lorenzo Peh’s forte. She put together a quirky and interesting collection.
Arfian Nazrin had suits meet cocktail, a collection spouting demure sophistication and flirty fun. In contrast, Hafiz Husaini’s collection fell flat with embellish- ments from last season’s styles and Vincent Leong’s resort wear was an unattractive combination of leather and badly cut items.
For the finale, current designers Jeffriey Raffiey and Amir Luqman from BDA stood out, offering a showing of feather and bling bling. Favourite Amir Luqman put on an amazing show by combining the traditional with glitter – resulting in beautiful sarongs with embellished sides and kebayas with shining skirts.
Lorenzo Peh emerged the winner of the Young Designer Awards, while Annette Liew and Arfian Nazrin were the first and second runners-up respectively.
Young but seasoned designers from BDA showcased their latest collections in Fashion Obsession, with bag designer Sasha Rowena littering the runway with her bag ideas, followed by a collection of gowns, mini dresses, sheer kaftans and floaty dresses in vibrant colours by WanPa, Hazree Wahid, Khairi Sufi, Wan Huzairil, Bella, Rico Rinaldi, Anizam Yusof and Amir Luqman.
Sasha’s contrasting hued clutch bags stood out from a collection of leather bags, purses and totes drawn from a palette of jungle themed shades.
Hazree went with the glamour mode of Sex And The City while Khairi, who made it to the top 15 in Project Runway Malaysia, relied on simplicity for his gowns in strong shades of green, red, blue and black.
Wan Huzairil doesn’t shy away from form-fitting cuts and his choice of a songket-inspired fabric lent a chic Malaysian flavour to his cream off-shouldered gold-belted gown. Nabella, who designs under her label Belle LaBelle, offered a pristine white collection. The duo of Ridzuan Ismail and Rashid Omar, who make up WanPa, delivered an unusual and stunning collection of short fitted dresses of multi-hued fabrics.
A Piala Seri Endon Batik Design Competition winner, Rico Rinaldi’s pairing of a fuddy-duddy tartan print with fun flowy chiffon skirts made a whimsical blend. Black but spunky was the inspiration behind Anizam Yusof’s collection – from ruffled necklines, layered ruffles to exaggerated sleeves – all in black.
Closing the evening was Amir Luqman, with a dreamy collection of beautifully draped short dresses to alluring evening gowns in earthy tones and metallic greys.
Singer-songwriter Ben Folds goes down LonelyAvenue with author Nick Hornby. Amir Luqman marries the traditional with bling bling for an amazing collection.
Tee Jing Wen blends ethnic and futuristic.
Syaiful Baharim’s tier dress.
Silas Liew’s take on outerwear.
Casual dress by Kavita Sidhu.
Clean lines from Tengku Syahmi.
(From left) Charming bell-sleeved gown from I Luv Wirda, Datuk Bernard Chandran’s two-piece inspired by the bajuKedah, baggy top and trousers from Villiam Ooi and Nazrin Idris presents a colourful collection.
Decked out in an outfit by Jimmy Lim.
Knitwear from Lorenzo Peh.
Ruffled sleeve top and shorts from Gallo.