HONG KONG–Wilson Yip, presenting an oversized mens wear collection that riffed on the idea of absent-mindedness, took home the top prize at Centrestage’s Young Fashion Designers’ Contest this year, beating out 15 other up and coming designers.
All the awards handed out at the event, organized by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) went to male designers who presented mens wear collections. The winners were selected by a panel of judges including Lawrence Leung, chairman of the HKTDC garment advisory committee, Peter Wong, the editorial director of the newly-launched Vogue Hong Kong, Michael Mok, head of merchandising at Joyce, and Japanese designer Mihara Yasuhiro who was this year’s special guest judge.
Yip walked away with a 35,000 Hong Kong dollar cash prize and a one-month internship in Japan working with Yasuhiro. The designer also separately won the best footwear design which awarded him an additional 10,000 Hong Kong dollars and the opportunity to develop an accessory collection to be sold at selected shops operated by I.T Group.
“I feel very excited to get two awards tonight, it’s so unexpected,” said Yip, who graduated of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University’s fashion design program three years ago and works as a knitwear designer in Dongguan, Guangzhou.
“It was inspired by my personal daily life. It’s my experience that I’m always forgetting to do things like zipping my fly after going to the bathroom or I leave my laptop in the taxi, so I’m trying to solve that kind of problem by using a new technique,” he said. “Let’s say I use a magnet as the zippers for the trousers or I connect the accessory to the garment.”
Yasuhiro commented that Yip’s collection “managed to paint fashion over the backdrop of everyday life, using elements of daily wear and injecting them with novelty and creativity”.
The first runner up was Louis Chow who created a collection that played with deconstructed pieces and the idea of what constitutes a finished garment. Many of the pieces in his collection had an inside-out look feel to them.
Meanwhile, second runner up Enzo Chan put together a collection that incorporated personal photographs of friends and families that were digitally edited and embroidered onto the clothes in a range of knits, suiting fabrics, and corduroy.