We love the Medusa collection for Fall 2011 designed by young talented Eugene Lin. The Singapore-born, London-based designer launched his label in 2009 and since then has been exhibiting during London and Paris Fashion Weeks. Comfort and luxury are synonymous with the label and we really like his sharp eye for detail and strong focus on creative design.
Could you tell us something about your background?
I moved to London in 2003 and did my BA in Fashion Design Womenswear at St. Martins College of Fashion and Design and after that I had my postgraduate diploma in Pattern-Cutting. During my gap year I honed my pattern-cutting skills at Preen and Vivienne Westwood and after graduation I worked for Roksanda Ilncic and Ashley Isham.
What did your time studying fashion at St. Martins teach you?
It’s very competitive in London, so is St. Martins College, so you really have to find something that makes you stand out. College was a very inspiring place where I had a lot of freedom and it really was up to me to find the best way to use it.
What do you prefer: process or final effect?
It’s all exciting, the process and the final product. The process is really hard because I cut every piece by myself. But when we have a shoot and I get to see if for the first time on the model, I am like “Wow”, it’s an amazing feeling and I am really pleased. Sometimes I have to add more pieces hours before the shoot , it’s a constant balancing act.
I like this kind of dichotomy in your collection: opulent, thick wools and dense stone prints versus feminine draped silk jersey’s. Could you tell us what is the inspiration behind this collection?
Every collection starts with a story. Alexander McQueen once said “Beauty can be found in most unusual places” and I really agree with that. I tend to find dark stories more interesting. For my fall 2011 collection I was inspired by the psyche and myth of Medusa, who was transformed by Athena to horrifying creature that the mere sight of it would turn onlookers to stone. The silhouette is slim, sophisticated and sensuous in a rich palette of earth tones. For the coats I used thick heavy wool and dresses and tops are made from silk jersey. The dresses necklines have been given a special emphasis, with the fabric pleated, folded and draped to echo Medusa’s execution. Opulent wool coats and jackets in stone print mimic Medusa’s petrified victims, contrasting against the femininely seductive draped jersey pieces.
Who is the typical Eugene Lin’s client?
When I’m designing I don’t have in mind a particular women. I won’t lie, so far the women buying my clothes tend to be very slim, aged between 25-55. They can appreciate good design and cut. I don’t want to design crazy showpieces. I want to women walk in to the store and want to buy my clothes and when she puts it on it fits perfectly and it’s wearable.
How is growing up in Singapore influenced your work?
In mid 90s in Singapore there was no fashion scene, no proper fashion magazine. I wasn’t able to go to boutique and touch high fashion clothes because all you could find were just clothes for work. Spending a thousand dollars for a one piece was a crazy thing at that time. The only contact with fashion was via the internet . I think it influenced my first collections, especially for Spring and Summer, when I did a lot of daily clothes, deconstructed skirts and shirts. Then it was quite hard for me to start making fall collections because in Singapore we don’t have a winter time. I had to really challenge myself with cutting coats and dresses.
What are your plans for the immediate future?
I’ve just started working for the next Spring/Summer 2012 collection. Also it’s a time of directional change for me. I’ve limited supply to a number of stockists preferring to work with just the broader names like Browns, Harrods and Selfridges and I now have a better idea what market and what price point I want to focus on.