26 April 2010

the day after the night of

So the panel was great! I was so honored to be there; I've never been more scared to speak at anything in my life (speaking at Teen Vogue's Fashion University in October was more like a big girl talk to me, everyone was so nice and adorable). But all my nerves kind of calmed down once I answered the first question (afterwards my nerves had a seizure and died when I spoke to everyone personally... so honored. Thank you for your kind words! So much.)

Columbia kids -- can I call them/you kids when you're older than me? Probably not BUT I'M AN OLD LADY I GET TO OK -- brought up some amazing questions, of which I will not reiterate completely (you should have gone!) but there were some questions I'll elaborate on only because there just wasn't enough time to do so last night.

  • Why is there a dearth of Asian American designers like Yohji , Rei, Issey? Why aren't they succeeding? Are they?*
Well, Yohji, Rei, Issey, Hanae Mori in her heyday -- they aren't Asian American designers in the first place anyway. They're all Japanese, born and bred. In every interview they've done that I have read they've consistently said they don't want to even be considered "Asian Designers", simply designers. In fact, none of them even show in their home fashion weeks -- they all show at Paris Fashion Week and that is one of biggest reasons they've all done so well; Paris FW is home plate. You show in Paris and you'll be known everywhere (not really that simple, but that's the gist).

picture by refinery29.com of A.Wang' designs. Can you tell he's Asian by his designs? No. You can just tell it's good design.

I don't think there's a 'dearth' of asian designers, and Phillip Lim agrees with me... you can't even really put a number on how many asian designers there should be, there is no quota to fill. There is no mission statement that says there needs to be 10 very successful Caucasian designers, 10 asian, etc etc. If you're a good designer you are a good designer. You have something different to offer regardless of your ethnic background. Yeah, your cultural background influences your designs but only as much as you let it, really. Asian Designers don't have a magic gene that makes their designs more awesome than non asian designers and vice versa. They're simply good at what they do and they happen to be Asian.

I don't think Asian American designers aren't succeeding as well as their Caucasian peers (but can you name five African American or Hispanic designers that are really successful? Five or ten. If you can, list them in your comments please.).

I think if anything, they're doing quite well for themselves actually, more than others, considering the state of fashion right now. A lot of great designers have fallen -- both great old houses and new upstarts that had some great potential. But designers like Alexander Wang, Mr. AsianObama (I mean Jason Wu, hahaha I'm so funnyyyyyy not really), Phillip Lim -- they're all very prominent in the fashion industry and that doesn't seem to be changing. They're kicking butt and taking names.

good design isn't guaranteed by your ethnicity. 3.1 Phillip Lim Resort

They're actually doing better than Asia based designers right now too. No Korean designer has really ever made it big worldwide. Even Japanese designers, while they do well editorial wise and the Japanese fashion economy is one of the strongest in the world (though it's been noted that recently Japanese teens are spending less), Japanese designers are only available in Japan for the most part. There is no globalization. I think their lack of success can be blamed on any number of things...lack of government funding, lack of community, the image fashion designers have in other countries... lack of marketability and identity to people outside their culture... I don't know. South Korea, I love it so much, but it's got some huge huge problems not just the way the fashion industry is run there but suicide rate, body image (i mean 75%+ Koreans have or want plastic surgery? WHY?)... so many damn problems I feel like worrying about fashion is the least of their problems.

So yeah. Rambled, but Asian American designers have it good, methinks. I should probably get back to class now (I wrote this in AP Literature... woops)

*i didn't write down the question so I'm just rephrasing what I can remember, if I changed the question, sorry!

Anyway, this whole thing was just my opinion on the subject. Take it as it is.

24 April 2010

come see me and people more awesome than me TOMORROW

I realize this is totally last minute (been BUSYYYY, it's been great) but if you follow me on twitter - if you do, I pity you for my incessant tweeting. Though it has gotten better, right? I WENT TO TWITTER REHAB! Kind of. Anyway - you'll realize I've been tweeting occasionally about this event.

Panel Discussion: Asian Americans in the Fashion Industry
Hosted by Columbia University's Asian Pacific American Awareness Month and Hoot Magazine

Columbia University's Asian Pacific American Awareness Month and Columbia University's first and only fashion publication, Hoot Magazine (hootmag.org), is hosting a mega-panel discussion with top Asian American figures in the fashion industry in order to promote the education and discussion of fashion and careers in fashion. In accordance to this year's theme, "Deeper," we hope to dive deeper into exploring the different ways in which Asian Americans have made revolutionary contributions.

Speakers include:
SuChin Pak, MTV Correspondent (Moderator)
Humberto Leon, Creative Director and Co-Founder of Opening Ceremony
Carol Lim, CEO and Co-Founder of Opening Ceremony
Joe Zee, Creative Director of ELLE & Stylist (newest confirmed panelist!)
Tina Chai, Stylist
Aya T. Kanai, Stylist
Phillip Lim, Fashion Designer
Patrick Li, Creative Director of Li, Inc
Ujjwala Raut, Model
EJ Samson, Online Editor of Teen Vogue
Arabelle Sicardi, Fashion Blogger of Fashion Pirates
The limited number of tickets (only $5 each) can be reserved through the TIC box in Lerner Hall or online at https://www.ovationtix.com/trs/pe/8095855. You may also purchase your tickets and pick up your will-call tickets at the door, but please be aware that seating will not be guaranteed last-minute.

A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Tibetan Village Project to aid in relief for those devastated in the Yushu earthquake in China.

RSVP on Facebook and invite your friends here:

I do hope to see some of you guys there! Say hi to me if you recognize me, I dyed my hair again hahaha.

14 April 2010

under.ligne collection preview


Some time ago (I think March 25th? Man, time flies when you're busy! It's crazy.) I was invited to the doo.ri showroom to preview the new under.ligne collection and to mee Doori herself. I love showrooms you guys; getting upclose and personal with the clothes is what I live for. Fancy fashion shows are awesome and I love them but it can get aggravating waiting in line, seat mix ups -- which happen more often than not, but it's understandable and I tip my hat to the ones who run the shows -- and this sentence is completely mangled but the gist is that I really love showrooms and couldn't wait to get my grubby mitts on the clothes. And, you know, meet Doori. Who is adorable. And well spoken. And hosted mother-daughter hair braiding at birthday parties several times in her life (random fact!).


I really liked the clothes; there was something in it for everybody. I particularly liked the printed trenchcoat and purple skirt, and kept on coming back to stare/fondle them. But really, it's a very well done collection; basics have a twist (perhaps a regular t-shirt isn't precisely assymetrical, maybe a trenchcoat has a strange print... you get the idea), and there is enough color and print to satisfy my own strange (read: obnoxious) taste but also if I'm feelin sinister or just New York there are plenty of subversive monochromatic pieces as well.


I think Camille would look dope in any of the black or white tankshirts..... they are callin your name girl.




These three were my favorite pieces from the line and I think the trenchcoat was a blogger favorite; everyone was grabbing a picture of it. It's perfect, isn't it? And surprisingly it's very light.




And oh heyyyy, who's this? ELIZABETH! BLOG BFF 4EVA.Strikin' a pose, what do you know. I wish I had a full length picture of her but we both had to jet within half an hour of meeting. Bummer. I still need her to teach me the ways of the D.I.Y comme jacketblanket. And the hair bow. And well, everything.

 p.s Thank you for inviting me to the showroom doo.ri! It was lovely meeting everyone.

02 April 2010