Young designers compete to create Chinese Singaporean fashion
Chinese Singaporean fashion is in the spotlight with a new fashion design competition. Organised by the Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre, the competition is part of Remix 2k21, a Chinese culture festival for youths that takes place at the Centre from 15 to 24 Jan.
The competition, open to students aged 15 to 25, invites youth to rediscover Chinese Singaporean culture through fashion. Ten shortlisted designs will be exhibited at the Centre, and a fashion showcase of the creations will be streamed live on 16 Jan. The contest will be judged by fashion designer and stylist Keith Png, celebrity Kate Pang and the Centre’s chief executive Low Sze Wee. The winner of the first prize walks away with a $1,000 cash.
Shortlisted finalists of the contest Yee Soo Xien, Sit Shi Jie, Vanessa See Yeu Chinq and Chong Yu Lin share how their creations reflect Chinese Singaporean culture.
Design by Nanyang Technological University School of Art Design and Media student Yee Soo Xien, 23
The back panel in the jacket by Yee is designed to reflect Chinese Singaporean culture. It combines fabrics used in the traditional garments of different Singapore ethnicities, including batik in Malay kebaya and silk in Chinese qipao. The jacket also incorporates traditional Chinese elements such as the mandarin collar and the basic silhouette of a qipao into the outfit.
Design by LASALLE Fashion Design and Textiles student Sit Shi Jie, 20
The fashion student wanted her design to look modern, and included details that showcase elements and silhouettes from traditional Chinese costumes, to reflect the ever-evolving Chinese Singaporean identity, which is influenced by Singapore’s different ethnicities, cultures and traditions.
While designing this contemporary two-piece set, she visualised someone who has a strong attachment to their Chinese culture and values, and decided to use Chinese ink on the pants bottom to give this sleek and edgy traditional outfit a fresh take. She adds that she chose black as the colour for the dress, even though it is traditionally associated with mourning in Chinese culture, because the colour is a timeless classic, perfect for any wardrobe.
Design by Nanyang Technological University School of Art Design and Media student Vanessa See Yeu Chinq, 23
See’s Chinese Singaporean wedding gown weaves together Chinese and Indian cultures in Singapore, and it can be worn by inter-racial couples.
The gown, like traditional Chinese and Indian wedding outfits, is a two-piece set. It includes motifs of mangoes, which symbolise fertility in Indian culture, as well as the osmanthus flower and peacocks. The colour palette of the gown – pink, with gold and red accents, channels auspiciousness.
Design by LASALLE Fashion Design student Chong Yu Lin, 23
This semi-casual outfit features Chinese calligraphic prints on a cropped top, layered pants and a jacket with geometric prints. The decision to create a three-piece set with a removable jacket was deliberate, and for reasons beyond aesthetics, says Chong. “It shows that culture is something we have to dissect layer by layer to be able to understand fully.”
Learn more about Remix 2k21 here.
(Photos: Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre)