Koonhor Fall 2014

By Ka Yee Chan

Attending Koonhor’s F/W ’14 collection at the Hub during Mercedes Benz Fashion Week, was like having a full meal from appetizer, main course and then dessert. For those who are not familiar with Koonhor, this is your time to look into them. You will be inspired by their attention to detail, and attracted to their constant spirit of working toward perfection.

Koonhor is a team of two designers Koon Lim from Singapore and Catrine Thé from Indonesia. They met in New York in 2003, and both studied in the Fashion Institute of Technology. The brand is based in Milan, and has been continuously growing. The products can be found in Italy, Hong Kong, Singapore, Russia, Japan and Saudi Arabia.

Starting the show, by reading the press information from Koonhor, the rich story line and descriptions set the mood for the show.

“This season, the Koonhor woman journeys through time to evoke a lust for change to constantly defy conventions and norms by going against grain, she takes on bold masculine traits with hedonistic style ‘From the not so distant past’, all with a modern twist.”

“For this Fall, she is inspired by the works of Emil Cadoo by braving elements of the Risqué to the poignant, all in the effort to re-define change for the modern woman. This sense cadoo-ism arms her with an unconventional talisman of full and lush floral pitted against bold masculine designs. It is resiliency of hers and the past, which have forged to bring about true freedom for the Koonhor woman.”

There were a total of 24 looks with the color story of brilliant blue, purple wine, loden green, dusty pink, black, and white. Metallic coatings were used thoroughly in the collection on collars, belt straps and jackets. Leather belted straps and metallic coatings acted as the Koonhor woman’s armor details. Each of Koonhor’s garment details has a meaning, denim stands for timeless look as it simulates life, and delicate pieces of all-over cotton embroidered roses on sheer organza reflect pure serenity. Koonhor’s pieces are very poetic and full of stories while they still remain minimalistic and comfortable.

With the honor to interview the Koonhor after the show, we get to know a bit more about their personalities. They are very polite and friendly. The relationship of the team: they fight a lot, but create a balance, working toward the common goal.

Koon: “I am a guy, I kind of fantasize about my woman, but Catrine is more practical. It’s all about comfort.”

Catrine: “ We do need a creative mind…think out of the box, not necessarily wearable, but it helps create the brand image. At the same time, here where I step in, we need to create a collection that women would swipe their card for and those are the pieces that give women comfort, also a sense of attachment. I am very attached to my cloth, I don’t buy and throw away cloth no matter what the price is.”

Koon: “And don’t forget, its all about quality and craftsmanship, and that’s what we are all about. Try to perfect like… everything.”

The music of the show reflects how detail-oriented they are. The music is Madame Butterfly Opera mixing with many beats. Madame Butterfly is all about this traditional Asian woman. The purpose is to deconstruct the opera. The tradition is similar to how the Koonhor women define norms and changes to re-define women.

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