SINGAPORE – With the Audi Fashion Festival’s line-up changing every year, you could say that it was a coveted return for these three designers.
Roderic Wong, Ko Youngji and Soravit Kaekamon – the winners of Audi Star Creation 2012 – made their second showing at the Audi Fashion Festival; this time, with their new collections on the runway.
Under the mentorship of Raoul designers Douglas and Odile Benjamin, the Audi Star Creation winners created the capsule collections seen at the Audi Star Creation Winners’ Showcase on May 17, 2013.
Now in its fourth year, the annual Asian fashion design competition grooms the winning designers for a promising career in fashion, while giving them the exposure that they need. Besides winning an year-long internship with F J Benjamin, as well as a chance to present their designs during the annual Audi Fashion Festival.
Soravit Kaewkamon at Audi Fashion Festival 2013. ALL PHOTOS: WESLEY KOW
She started as a menswear designer whose collection “really popped up on the runway” at the Audi Star Creation 2012; Thai designer Soravit Kaewkamon’s designs were praised for their “polished” look by David Wang, judge and the Textile and Fashion Federation of Singapore vice-president.
A year on, this 24-year-old designer has turned her hand to womenswear, and the results are stunning. Titled “Beauty of Hornbill”, Kaewkamon’s 2013 collection truly takes flight – pardon the pun – as the feminine counterpart to her menswear designs last year.
While it’s still premised on the same “hornbill” theme, Kaewkamon’s key design details like pleats, folds and feathers work much better on women. Instead of being tucked into pants or half-hidden under boxy shirts and tops, the details of her laser-cut prints are shown to full dramatic effect on skirts and dresses.
Most pieces are well-cut and the obi belts cinch the looks well, appearing almost like bows on dresses and skirts. The hornbill motif too, is well-integrated into her womenswear collection; on one dress, for instance, Kaewkamon features a mirrored design that looks almost kaleidoscopic.
In an earlier interview, Kaewkamon shared news on her new women’s wear project with Raoul. If her Audi Star Creation womenswear is any indication, this is one collaboration that we can’t wait to see.
Ko Youngji and the finale dress of her collection at Audi Fashion Festival 2013
Next on the runway was Korean designer Ko Youngji’s “La Porte”, a collection inspired by the French-style doors and buildings she saw in Paris. To expand on her architectural inspiration, the designer also featured repetitions of chandelier and door motifs on the finale dresses.
According to Ko, her collection focuses on straight and curved lines to “accentuate the lines of a woman”; sometimes a little too literally. Some dresses appeared too awkwardly boxy or voluminous on the slender models, even when there was a belt in place. The more successful designs kept to simple shapes, like the opening bubblegum pink dress seen on the runway.
Roderic Wong at Audi Fashion Festival 2013
Roderic Wong, the winner of the Audi Young Designer Award, stood out for his artful use of textures at the Audi Star Creation 2012; the Chinese designer also impressed the judging panel with his handmade fabric.
In an almost day-and-night contrast this year, Wong expanded on his almost bridal white “Tissue of Being” collection in 2012 with new designs in much darker hues for 2013, to mixed results.
Now in shades of plum, black and navy, Wong’s capsule collection is a big leap away from his layering of opaque, crepe-like flowy fabrics last year.
In his more concerted focus on outerwear, Wong’s delicate mix of textures that characterised his work last year also seem less evident in this collection. The “textured” look is more blatant and elaborate on the finale gowns, which give his designs an almost The Matrix-like inspiration that may not be to everyone’s taste.
Wong describes his current collection as being “more wearable” and indeed, the coats and jackets shown were well-cut; stylish city girls would love to add a few of these into their wardrobe.
Wong had shared that he has developed an interest in bridalwear, after he’d recently designed his fiancée’s wedding dress for their upcoming nuptials. Perhaps he will soon make a return to the delicate layering that distinguished his first collection from the rest at the 2012 competition.
Shop for designs by Audi Star Creation 2012 winners Roderic Wong, Ko Youngji and Soravit Kaekamon at the Blueprint Emporium 2013, held at The Pit Building, Level 3 from May 18 to 19. For more information, go to http://audifashionfestival.com/ and http://blueprint.sg/.
The Audi Star Creation 2012 Winners Showcase took place on May 17, at The Tent@Marina Promenade at Marina Promenade Turn, behind the Singapore Flyer from May 15 to May 19, 2013. For more information, go to http://audifashionfestival.com/, or follow Audi Fashion Festival on Twitter and Facebook.