For years, Japanese samurais have been the icon of the fearless war hero. Yin Thuzar Aung’s debut label Yugen conveys her interpretation of this strength and courage through gender-neutral pieces. Yugen Yugen

Her East-meets-West looks, aptly put together in a collection named Samurais, bear hints of evergreen war elements. We speak to Yin to find out more on her showcasing her graduate collection at Runway 2017.

Why did you decide to pursue Fashion in Singapore?

In the 2000s, Myanmar was still a closed economy, so as I was growing up, I had little exposure to fashion. Within my personal circle, almost all that I knew were involved in business but I was different. I was fortunate to have a supportive mother who noticed I was wired differently from my siblings who all excelled in academics.

I found Fashion through a series of trial-and-errors and I decided I was interested in managing fashion projects. Hence I decided to major in Fashion Merchandising and Marketing at Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (NAFA) in Singapore as the contemporary arts scene here is vibrant.

Love your collection! What is the concept behind it?

Thank you! This collection truly represents me. I’m not your typical girl-next-door nor have I ever liked the idea of wearing body-hugging dresses and heels. Being comfortable, feeling free and confident are essential aspects for daily life. My clothes must be comfortable yet look smart – I also believe that clothes do not define gender.

Can you walk us through the designing process?

My concepts always stem from fabrications, functionalities and proportions. Pattern-making is fundamental, and proportion and functionality come next. For example, I have skirt-like pants in this collection and I have to consider how the clothes fit perfectly on the bodies of both gender. There are definitely more restrictions and it’s tricky to make both genders wear the same design but it has been a fascinating process for myself.

I wouldn’t say I’m the best with drawing hence to simplify the designing aspect, I toy with geometric shapes by combining and eliminating. As I go on, the sketches become much more interesting. I make use of paneling and pleats for the design details, and I enjoy modifying plain fabrics as they bring out the rich and special flavour of average fabrics. I also love the idea of quilting – my grandmother used to make blankets with various leftover fabric swatches and they are breathtaking.

Event details can be found here.


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