Wenqi Wu was born in Shanghai; his childhood was guided by traditional Confucian values and the practice of Chinese calligraphy. Today, these elements are visible in the way he focuses on lines and shapes in his designs. After he moved to New York at the age of 15, his visual sensibility was further shaped by the contradictions between Eastern and Western culture.
Hi Wenqi! How would you describe your style in 3 words?
Youthful, effortless, Utilitarian Chic.
What is your favourite trend of all times?
My favorite style is Tomboy, I do not know if that count as a trend, but I feel like the tomboy style liberates women, also empowers women.
Could you tell us something about your last collection?
My Fall Winter 2015 Collection was inspired by the advertising posters during the 1920’s Russian Constructivism era produced by Alexander Rodchenko and Vladimir Mayakovsky. The collection was especially influenced by the use of geometric shapes and lines with dynamic colors. I manipulated the commercial art poster motifs into my unique dialogue of the innovative patterns, the artful placement of lines and shapes, and the detailed fabrics like custom Jacquards, cashmere knits and embroideries. Ultimately the goal of this collection is to create youthful effortless pieces with a twist of utilitarian chic.
What’s your favourite piece of the collection?
My favorite piece is the Double-breasted Coat with the Chevron Pattern.
” To me, I love to see women dress in this effortless chic style with a sense of garçon manqué but still feminine.”
What was the feedback you got on the collection?
Mostly Positive. As a next step, I think I will add a sense of femininity to the pieces.
Is there a fabric that you love to work with the most?
Silk Crepe, Wool Jacquards
“I do not have a common dream, but I do fantasize that Caroline De Maigret wears my designs on the street of Paris.”
Do you have a sneak peek of the next collection for us?
Yes, For my SS16 collection, I was inspired by Purism. The French art movement was founded by painter Amédeée Ozenfant and architect Le Courbusier in 1918 as a spinoff of Cubism. I was fascinated by the geometric forms, bold architectural lines, and the use of dynamic colors.
Your shoe line is incredible, was it hard translating your concept into an accessory line?
The shoe collection was for my graduation collection. I do think that bringing accessories to the collection will offer a complete point of view.
You grew up in China and you moved to NYC when you were 15 yrs old. Does the duality of this two culture play a role in your design?
My childhood was guided by traditional Confucian values, and the practice of Chinese calligraphy. Today, these elements are visible the way I focus on lines, shapes, and proportion in my designs. My design aesthetic is very tomboy but still feminine, modern, youthful and effortless chic yet utilitarian.
In Confucian perspective, they value balance, and the idea of subdued beauty. Maybe I was raised by that idea, I prefer more subtle fashion, and sex appeal. When I moved to New York, the fashion here is more exaggerated, and bold. That’s why I really like the idea of Tomboy, it sort of eliminates the boundaries of gender, and it’s about the attitude, and the personality. To me, I love to see women dress in this effortless chic style with a sense of garçon manqué but still feminine. I really love the idea of gender neutrality. It balances my point of view on subtle beauty and femininity.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I would love to still keep doing what I love, which is creating collections after collections. Also I hope that my brand will be more mature then.