Thai designers look to the hot season with summer collection in hot colours and sumptuous fabrics
AS EXCITING and exhausting as ever, Bangkok International Fashion Week was back last week for its eleventh edition with shows spread over three leading shopping centres – Siam Paragon, Siam Center The Ideopolis and Siam Discovery The Exploratorium.
The five-day event featured a total of 12 shows plus fashion talks and presentations from 29 designers, all focused on the joys of summer.
Here’s what we took away from each of the presentations.
The curtain rose on the first on Hive Life Presents Greyhound Original “The Unofficial Show”. Sponsored by Samsumg Galaxy s9, the show featured handsome “Oppa” models (the term is used by South Korean girls to describe an attractive man).
Boasting hairdos by acclaimed stylist Grit “Gong” Jirakiertvadhana, the models waved the “new gen” flag, demonstrating feisty attitudes through blazers, short sleeved shirts and shorts with the back pocket turned inside out. Loungewear was no longer limited to lounging around but twisted to serve all purposes by pairing cupra fabric with biker shirts and pyjama bottoms.
Designer Pupawit Kritpalanara of Issue, which was presented by Jaguar E-Pace, chose to travel on the Silk Road and down the East Asian River towards the western world for his latest collection.
In line with its theme “The Invisible”, the models covered their faces revealing only glasses and hats to the audience.
“I believe that what is considered invisible is in fact not invisible,” the designed explained after the show. “We may not see art and culture with our own eyes but we know it exists. The collection offers fun and freedom through freeform silhouettes and, prints with environmental motifs such as birds, animals.”
The emphasis was on natural fibres and silk that nodded to the 70s and underlined Issue’s romantic and bohemian characteristics. Modern prints came in watermelon, jade green, and ginger yellow tones and the brand once again collaborated with Challawan swimming suit to create hot looks for men.
One of the hottest fashion brands around and designed by Vatanika Patamasingh na Ayudhaya, Vatanika was sponsored by Citi and showed a spring-summer collection inspired by female gestures, radiating charm and expressing more than mere movements.
Highlights included strong feminine silhouettes, materials such as geometric mesh, specially customised woven silk tassels, sophisticated lace, and silk satin and advanced draping techniques to create knee-length shorts and bold miniskirts. The modern female maxi dress evolved from the structure of a hoodie. Key colours and patterns included black, white, metallic silver and red stripes.
Always on the lookout for ways to push Thai fashion designs to the international stage, Polpat Asavaprapa, the multi-talented creative designer of Asava Group and president of the Bangkok Fashion Society, says he is aiming for the Thai capital to be named “Bangkok Design Capital 2022”. “We really need to focus on paving the way towards this goal,” he told XP.
Presented by Purra, Asava’s latest collection, “Subliminal”, looks deep into a true expression of the female’s soul and thought process. Classical tones such as white, black, blue and beige blended with the summery tones of Parisian Blue, Ultramarine-Green, and Haute Red. Contemporary Thai silk fabric added delicacy to the outfits while tweed added a bold texture for a luxurious and classical feel. Timeless silhouettes like bustier structures and tailored suits reinforced the classical elements while pinstripe suit fabrics accentuated masculine strength and sweet femininity.
Polpat says he no longer considers trends as important. “Designers cannot compete with fast fashion. Individuality is key. The Subliminal collection reflects a clean, neat, and balanced lifestyle. The Asava women is happy with her life and able to choose what is right for her,” he says.
Iconic designer Nagara Sambandaraksa never ceases to surprise fashionistas and his show was no exception, featuring singer Palitchoke “Peck” Ayanaputra, actor Nadech Kikumiya, and actresses Janie Thienphosuwan, Urassaya “Yaya” Sperbund and Khemanit “Pancake” Jamikorn.
“The Lost Horizon” collection was inspired by the scent of the colourful summer flowers, the ambience of praying, smoke, the smell of incense, and the delicate lines and patterns of Himalayan culture.
His signature touch of luxury came from fabulous fabrics such as silk and linen, outstanding prints, and exquisite embroidery in metallic gold and silver as well as sequins and beads, along with quilting and applique.
Rotsaniyom White Label
Designed and co-founded by Pongsak Kobrattanasuk and Thita Kamonnetsawat, Rotsaniyom has gone from unknown to rising star thanks to the simple and seamless combination of lace and other materials. This season’s collection called “Sun” combines lace and glossy materials to show that “sometimes the sun revolves around the earth”, a euphemism for modern civilisation.
“People who are leaders or confident in their thoughts can be compared to the sun, shining and giving out energy to those around them and sometimes feel they are the centre of the universe and forget that they are not the only sun that exists. Without the planets revolving it, the sun would lose its significance. Therefore, the sun must also learn to be a follower and sometimes the centre of the rotation changes,” said the designer of his concept.