This AW19, international fashion organisation Fashion Scout have awarded four gifted designers with the coveted Ones to Watch accolade. 1×1 Studio, Aurélie Fontan, Bowen Hu and Shie Lyu will all showcase their triumphant collections in a group catwalk show at London Fashion Week next month.
Founded in 2014, Fashion Scout continues to be a powerful pioneering platform, innovating fashion’s most exciting upcoming talents to globally renowned designers. The organisation’s previous winners include the likes of Peter Pilotto, David Koma, Eudon Choi and Pheobe English.
The four winners have been selected from an extensive group of contenders and impressed industry experts Martyn Roberts (Fashion Scout’s Founder and Director), Kendal Robbins (Senior Programme Manager at the British Fashion Council) and Scarlett Conlon (Deputy Fashion Editor at The Guardian).
Without further ado, let’s meet the winners:
1×1 Studio are a menswear brand that creates knitwear which focuses on intriguing texture, craftsmanship and innovative knitting techniques. Founded in 2017 by London College of Fashion graduate Yi-Ling Kuo, the label collaborates with different designers for every collection to stretch the horizons of their creativity and brand identity. The garments are produced in the UK using recycled sustainable materials from England, Italy and Japan, and intend to offer a playful balance between formal attire and casual streetwear for a male audience. Yi-Ling has worked at Mary Katrantzou and Julien McDonald before winning the FDC Young Designer Award in 2017 and will present a though-provoking AW19 collection that looks back to the legend of Icarus, a myth that mirrors the intense proximity between human and science in the present day.
“I am excited to showcase our work on an international platform. It means a lot of hard work will be seen from the 1X1 Studio team. Fashion Scout is every designer’s dream place to show at.”
Only launching her label last year, Paris born and London based designer Aurélie Fontan has already formed her brand as one that centres on sustainability. She considers bio-design with meticulous detail in order to maintain a zero-waste production method, creating luxuriously feminine womenswear. This is not the first award Fontan has under her belt – she is the previous winner of the Michael Kors Accessory Design Competition and was employed by technology behemoth SAMSUNG to design a collection entirely on a smartphone that could be both couture and bio-degradable. She has been featured in Vogue, i-D and Elle and her AW19 collection represents her utopian fantasies for the future of fashion.
“I am proud to represent my university and sustainable ethos among such an excellent panel of emerging designers. It is a great opportunity to showcase the best sustainable practice to the industry and the media.”
China, Sydney, Tokyo, New York and London – Shie Lyu has lived and worked in all these locations, and their distinctive cultures and aesthetics have all formed her brand and personal identity. Simultaneously playing both mathematician and couture designer, Shie Lyu used formulas to curate her AW19 collection. Her background in the finance industry means that she approaches fashion with a regimented, fastidious mindset. This helps her construct highly systemised structural pieces made from Perspex, rubber and industrial tubing, and these rigid, unforgiving materials are balanced with vibrant embroidery and beading. Upon completion of a Fashion Design Masters at the globally renowned Parsons School in New York, Shie Lyu’s graudate collection was showcased at NYFW and this year, her eponymous label was one of H&M’s Design Award finalists.
“It is such a great honour and surprise that I have been selected as one of the OTW winners! I am very inspired and feel much more motivated to push myself further in fashion design, especially in textile innovation.”
Bowen Hu’s lead source of inspiration for her designs is the individual wearer as her unique unisex garments consider her audience’s personality, psychology and environment. Her AW19 collection entitled ‘Lucid Dream’ is influenced by her time learning textiles at Central Saint Martins as all the garments are composed of organically handmade fabrics. The collection explores Hu’s fascination with dream analysis and the subconscious, and each design has a corresponding story and musical soundtrack inspired by a personal dream as a result. The colour palette for the A/W collection maintains a subdued, neutral tone to create a relaxed and calming aesthetic. All these details were created in order to evoke the senses for a closer, more intense interaction between human and garment. Hu worked at The Row before launching her label and has been featured in Vogue Italia and Paper Magazine.
“Being one of the four winners is a great honor for me and it makes me believe in what I am doing more. People like Fashion Scout who truly appreciate the value of young designers are commendable. I feel assured.”
Congratulations to all the winners – we cannot wait to see your collections in February.
Fashion Scout will present its AW19 Ones to Watch Catwalk Show during London Fashion Week on Sunday 17th February at 13.30pm, The Vestibule Catwalk, Freemasons’ Hall.
Text: Natalie Zannikos
Images: 1×1 Studio, Fashion Scout, notjustalabel.com