Interview with Eudon Choi
By Laura Beaney
In 2009 a senior designer walked out of the prestigious doors of Twenty8Twelve. The decision was spurred by a desire to create his own label and with the help of Vauxhall Fashion Scout he did just that. Almost a year on Korean-born, Eudon Choi can list Sienna Miller and Jade Jagger among the devotees to his eponymous label. With his dynamic fusion of masculine tailoring and elegant feminine silhouettes the work of Eudon Choi reveals intense design methodology. Drawing upon military and masculine influences for his latest collection Choi employs durable materials and muted tones to striking effect.
FAULT: Looking at your collection in person, the construction and tailoring is very detailed, how did you gain these skills?
“It’s funny, I actually used to be a menswear designer. I had already completed a Masters in Menswear at Yonsei University (South Korea), but I gradually became more interested in women’s wear. I made the decision to study for a Masters at the Royal College of Art in London. I think this was the real turning point in my career. In my current collection you can see elements of the structure involved in menswear tailoring as well as military influence. I play around with the volumes and dimensions of the garments to create my own unique style.
FAULT: How did make the transition between graduation and launching your own label?
In 2006 I was fortunate enough to have my graduate collection bought by Dover Street Market. I then went on to work as a senior designer at Sienna Miller’s label, Twenty8Twelve. I had thought a lot about launching my own label and the time felt right.
I began with a very small capsule collection, which I presented in a friend’s showroom in Paris. It was an opportunity to draw my work to the attention of the media, other designers and buyers. I did not realise at the time but my work had also made an impact upon the panel at Vauxhall Fashion Scout. I was selected as one of the four February 2010’s Ones To Watch, which allowed me to present my collection most recent collection at London Fashion Week AW 10/11.
FAULT: How does the concept for your latest collection compare with your last?
My first collection was very small, just to introduce the label to the buyers really. It was very dressy and delicate with beautiful sheer fabrics. My palette featured mainly candy colours – the style was very soft and whimsical.
For my second collection I wanted to take up a new challenge so decided to focus upon a practical and casual collection, something I had never done before. It has a military look to it without being too prominent. On the rack my designs have the appearance of menswear, but upon closer inspection they are actually very feminine. Although the pieces are structural they are very easy to wear.
FAULT: Can you describe some of the techniques and materials you used for the collection?
I like to take traditional concepts and present them in an unconventional manner. I used chiffon in a way, which turned the idea of traditional military camouflage on its head. I even applied masculine tailoring techniques to materials that are usually very soft and feminine like silk. However, this collection features more centrally upon hardy materials.
The leather for the trimmings was a gift! For this I was able to collaborate with fashion label owner Jas M.B. Jas’ company is obviously already established, but he was kind enough to let me go down to his factory and chose any leather I wanted. I was like a child in a sweet shop! He has amazing leathers and a huge range; I went through all his stock and opted for high quality brown leather. In my collection you can see I have integrated it with a sweatshirt to give a nod to the camouflage effect. Rubber-mounted wool has been used to create a raised effect on the seams so they really stand out and double-bonded waterproof material has been used on some of the outer garments – the material is very easily manipulated so it can be stitched into but it is also very functional. Fabric is very key to my designs.
FAULT: Do you have a favourite piece from the collection?
The buckled over-the-knee boots have become somewhat of a talking point although I must say, for me it would be the coats. On one I have used a raglan sleeve as I love the shape it creates – the wearer can pull the sleeves up to which gives a puffed look and personalises the outfit.