One star that certainly caught our eye at London Fashion Week was Kathleen Kye. Kye who’s fans include Kate Moss and Jamie Hince is also one of the latest of Vauxhall Fashion Scout’s “One to watch” designers, she gave us an insight on her collaboration with Adidas, her influence by Professor Louise Wilson OBE and her race to the top.
Q. You studied at Central Saint Martins which has produced some amazing talent. Who would you say was the key designer (s) that influenced you?
A. It was a big honor that I could study at such a prestigious. Although I respect all the upper classmen the biggest person who inspired me is Professor Louise Wilson OBE. She taught me almost everything that I have to know in fashion designing.
Q. You have used finger and hand gesture shapes in your designs, where did this design silhouette come from?
A. I was always very curious about human body, shapes and how it works. Usually garments are another layer that is added to human body. But I wanted to take something that is already there in human form and make it into another layer.
Q. I read that you are now focusing on your t-shirt line in Korea. After studying in London would you say that your designing has now been influenced by the diversity you were surrounded by in London?
A. Actually the basic wear line is collaboration with a graphic artist Keenkeee. It’s just another project that I am doing at the moment. Currently I am making some pieces for All Right Reserved, Hong Kong regarding Adidas x Jeremy Scott and another season in London fashion week. Also I am sponsored by Seoul Fashion Center in Korea. I can say that I am heavily influenced by London, the cities style, its diversity and funkiness.
Q. What do you like and dislike about the London look?
A. London has a diverse look that doesn’t necessarily care about trend, which I appreciate. However the increase of high street fashion brands kind of messes up the cities style.
Q. What is the design ethos behind your work?
A. Kye’s design ethos is to represent fun-loving new menswear shapes that distinguish from the conventional patterns. All men possess a fantasy about being “macho” although this is being depressed at the moment in the name of a civilized society. Kye’s concept in menswear designing is to represent inherent manliness with some elements of fun in it. Fashion designing is in the thick of commercial interests, but wouldn’t it represent a cultural endeavor as well?
Describe your look in three words.
A. Fun, rude, edgy
Q. What would you say was another main highlight in your career so far?
A. I am currently working on a project with adidas Hong Kong. I am sponsored by Seoul fashion center. Also having a showcase in London next season sponsored by Korean culture center. And I am a part time TV show presenter in fashion channel in Korea. Oh and I am currently working as a stylist for world famous band 2NE1.
Q. If you had to relate music to your designs what genre of music would you choose?
A. Urban hip-hop music.
Q. There seems to be a sense of aggression in your designs and prints, is there a meaning behind this?
A. I like fashion that has a strong statement. The theme for SS12 was themed after militarism. To show the conflict in it, I made a gun shape out of skulls and bones.
Q. Would you say that you are trying to appeal to a pervasive audience?
A. I am trying to make a statement as a designer rather than making something that everybody would like to wear. However as I am starting a women’s wear line next season, I will try to incorporate both statement and wear-ability.