The Active Intellectual…we all know her. She’s the woman who walks into a room in a striking outfit that only she can wear. She’s unique. She’s her own woman. She’s funny. She’s sporty. She loves embellishment in her wardrobe. She knows how to pop color and she is the queen of avant-garde finishes. She is the life of the party. This woman who we all know, was the inspiration for Malaysian Prête-Couture designer Bernard Chandran.
Walking into a presentation is always an experience in its own. Depending on how the still mannequins or sometimes even models are set up, you can already get a basic sense of the collection. When I saw the Chandran collection for the first time I knew she was a fun woman. Just like the Active Intellectual, Chandran thinks outside of the box with his finishes, draping, neck lines, and use of color.
His designs can fit almost anywhere in life from casual to evening wear. Even though his aesthetic is completely European, having studied at one of Paris’s most prestigious institutions for Haute Couture, he always puts a piece of where he came from into his designs. He is known for using a Malaysian inspired color palet with European cuts. He even explained to me that the fabric is meant to be very thin, because in his part of the world where what Parisians call « summer » is an year round experience. There, lightweight fabric is not only appreciated but is a must. Anybody with any kind of eclectic taste should look into his work. He combines many different couture techniques into many different outfits for almost every occasion.