Big business for little people

Art April 06, 2017 01:00

By KUPLUTHAI PUNGKANON
The Nation

Leading Thai designers are joined by international brands for the Siam Paragon Kids International Fashion Week 2017



 Laughter and happy smiles were very much the order of the day last weekend as 700 young models checked their clothes and hair before sashaying out on the Parc Paragon catwalk for Siam Paragon Kids International Fashion Week 2017 (KIFW). 

The edgy two-day event featured 14 shows by 19 kids fashion labels including prominent Thai brands Hook’s Tube Gallery, Rotsaniyom, and Little Fox. Among the famous dads striding out on the runway were Ae Jirakorn, the Black Crow from the recently ended TV show “Mask Singer”, whose son and daughter were modelling for Zara, and Golf F***ing Hero, who rapped as daughter Chujai appeared attired in Paul Frank. Actor Jesdaporn “Tik” Pholdee strode along the catwalk for wife Sitamon’s latest collection for Little Fox.

There were other celebrity kid models too, among them Athena Thamavaranukupt, Ponrapi Kasemsri Na Ayudhya, and the young heirs to the Foodland crown, Aleena, Tapat, Pimnara and Titat. Sano Patthaveekarn, Wanmai Chatborirak and Panther Corp Dyrendal rocked with runway along with Lela and Aden, Cindy Sirinya Bishop’s two kids, Lullabelle and Laila, daughters of Ida Siriwut and Paula Taylor respectively, and Natacha Plianwithee’s little one Triton. 

Siam Paragon’s Chanisa Kaewruen told XP that KIFW 2017 had set a new record with more than 1,200 kids registered for the two-day audition round. “That underlines our position as the world-class fashion hub,” she enthused. 

The shows kicked off with Hook’s Presented by SCB. Prapakas “Pakkard” Angsusingha, the driving force behind the collection, drew inspiration for the label’s “I _ Superstars” concept from such icons as Madonna, David Bowie and Marilyn Monroe. 

“By combining the playful design with smart tailoring, this latest collection was bursting with identity. The highlights were all about the interplay of textured fabrics, graphic patterns and the creative use of colours. “I _ Superstars” portrays a burst of colours and fun through stylish silhouettes with a fancy party vibe,” the designer told XP. 

Stunning in mostly red and white, long established local brand Tube Gallery presented by True showcased “Tokyo Garden” for girls and “TG Robocat” for boys by Phisit Jongnarangsin and Saksit Pisalasupongs. 

The “Tokyo Garden” line drew on the beauty and colours of seasonal flowers, while tapping into the Japanese art of flower arrangement known as ikebana. The charm of irises, cherry blossoms, hydrangeas and bonsai trees was reinterpreted in embroidery and prints using a new technique that involves printing patterns on mesh fabrics then heat setting them, before embroidering with colour threads. The TG Robocat range, meanwhile, travelled back to the good old days of Japanese comics and robot toys, such as Astro Boy, Robocon and Gundum, with the talented duo drawing inspiration from 

 a typical robot and the “Maneki-Neko,” a common Japanese figurine believed to bring good luck and happiness. Both collections powerfully incorporated the brand’s artistic and cultural identities.

 Making its kids fashion runway debut, Rotsaniyom proudly presented “Fleur” a collection inspired by delicate details of floral petals. Pongsak Kobrattanasuk and Thita Kamonetsawat, the brand’s founders and designers, were inspired by the flower girls at weddings, usually adorable little ladies walking down the aisle just before the maids of honour, scattering flower petals along the bridal path. 

Sitamon Pholdee designed not just the clothes but also a memorable show for Little Fox and husband Jesdaporn once again showed his full support by not only serving as a presenter but also singing “Incy Wincy Spider” as young boys and girls modelled outfits in vivid colours and diverse printed textures, materials and silhouettes resembling the Spring/Summer 2017 adult collection. 

International brands were very much in evidence too, with GAP Kids, Zara Kids and Kids’ Planet drawing wows from spectators. There was loud applause too for Diesel Kids, Cattimini, IKKS Junior, La Magie de Pumm, Le Petit Pumm, Lil’s Fairy Puin, Laugh, Paul Frank, Barbie, Petit Bateau, Earth Magic, Miki House, and Millions of Colours. 

Ae Jirakorn joined his kids on stage for the finale of “Zara Kids”. Resembling the silhouettes of the adult’s collection, the collection brings in a distinct summer vibe. The main hue was light blue with a hint of white while playful details included the mixed use of textiles and off-shoulder tops.

For more than 120 years, French fashion house Petit Bateau has been creating high quality, stylish clothing for the whole family. Its debut collection in Thailand for KIFW2017 was designed by Sonia Delaunay and Blias Cendras and featured classic designs mainly in indigo blue inspired by alphabets, forms, colours, imagination and childhood memories. Using only the finest quality cotton carrying the Oeko-Tex label, all the brand’s clothes provide maximum freedom of movement for the little ones.

For its part, Earth Magic turned girls into ladies with childish charms. Inspired by female rockers, the latest collection “Pop’N Punk Girl” conjured up a world of magic where excitement and fun await everyone. The key palette was black, with a hint of bright colours, such as pink of the matching pantone with the logo, bringing the liveliness to the collection. Leathers, silky furs and mesh socks added the punk elements to the total look.

Last but not least was the Barbie collection that allows young girls to dress like their favourite doll with pink very much at the forefront. 

American brand Paul Frank, which is known for its Julius the Monkey mascot, brought its “Have Fun with Us” collection designed by Tanut Hemwadee to the KIFW2017 stage. Melding the brand’s personalities, striking prints, bright colour palette with playful and modern twist, the collection was a true delight.