Taiwanese designer and London College of Fashion graduate Jenn Lee made her London Fashion Week debut as part of the Fashion Scout platform which provides a showcase for internationally recognized designers.
Jenn Lee is a brand which powerfully marries traditional Chinese influences with Western ones such as cyber punk to produce garments with an avant-garde aesthetic. Underpinned by a life affirming message to promote positivity and encourage self-confidence her AW20 collection was entitled ” The Wild Women Awakens”. Exploring modern issues around contemporary women who are still bound by societal traditions and stereotypes this message with its cross continent and cross-cultural commonality was one that Sodium wanted to find out more about.
I caught up with Jenn Lee backstage after her rapturously received runway debut to talk about this collection and her wider philosophy
1. I loved the collection and what could be described as its East meets West concept. What was the vision behind it?
I was studying in London and this influenced me a lot. I used traditional silhouettes but made them abstract to give a modern look. I mixed dragon prints and Chinese elements with coin totem prints in cyber punk fashion which took it from East to West.
2. I loved the casting which was very diverse. How important to you is to have a divergent cast?
The whole show was one in which I needed to think about what sort of model I use. My brand is about liberation and female empowerment so I wanted to use different types of models to present this message.
3. I know that sustainability is at the core of what you do. How vital do you think it is for the brand to have a genuinely sustainable footprint?
There are so many disasters happening and I am always thinking about the Earth. I used coffee grind fabrics and recycled plastic in the collection. I want to use materials that can be remade and have a new life. I collaborated with Nike two weeks ago and we had a workshop on sustainable fashion.
4. Bilal Hassani has worn some of your pieces. Which other celebrity would you love to see in one of your creations?
5. How have you found your first runway show during London Fashion Week?
As I studied in London it has meant a lot to me to have my first London show.
6. Where would you like to take the brand from here?
I want to keep this energy and extend this womens liberation to my audience. I don’t want to just make clothes and sell them. I think that is boring. I want to send a message to promote liberation and female empowerment.
Huge thanks to Jenn Lee for taking the time to speak to me immediately after the show, to Chloe and Alisha at Dyelog for arranging it all and to Alessandra Aschenbrenner for her help.