Last month, the New School’s Parsons School of Design graduate returned to New York Fashion Week to show his collection. With a two-year-old boutique at Seasons Place in Beijing, he will open a 950-square-foot store in Shenzhen at the Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport in June.
Next month, the first handbag collection will be sold in his New York location at 838 Madison Avenue. In August, the designer will launch e-commerce just as his fall ready-to-wear is arriving at retail.
His lease is winding down for his atelier on London’s Savile Row at 33 Savile Row, which is where he has largely focused on making coats and solely using natural materials. Starting with basting and fabric cutting, he then moved on to fitting and patternmaking, he said. The designer also has other workshops in London.
Real estate prices there have risen by 20 percent, due partially to the Savile Row Bespoke Association’s efforts to make more people familiar with Savile Row tailoring and the world-famous street, he said. (Representatives from the SRBA will participate in the March 25 Chivas Alchemy event at the Taj Lands End hotel in Mumbai.) “The more people who know about it, the more people who want that space. It’s natural, but I hope I can stay,” Cheng said.
As part of his plan to add costume designer to his job description, Cheng will apply to New York University’s Costume Design MFA program with the hope of starting classes in the fall of 2018. His fall 2017 collection was based on the 1946 Humphrey Bogart-Lauren Bacall film “The Big Sleep.” “What I like most about clothing are their power to transform. When carefully designed, worn and accessorized, clothing can improve the appearance of the wearer, enhance their personalities and transform them into the people they aspire to be. I am fascinated by this aspirational and metamorphical aspect in both fashion and costume design,” he said.