Leah Kim Gets The Lo-lo with Chi Zhang

1. What got you into focus on environmental protection and social welfare in your fashion?

I was saddened by the serious pollution in my home, the city of Beijing, which influenced my desire to raise awareness of environmental protection and social welfare. Since 2013, I started to heavily integrate the environmental protection concept into my design. I hope to inspire my audience to protect our hometown.

2. In the recent fashion show, your models are dancing down the runway rather than doing a traditional runway walk. Why do you want your models to dance down the runway? Is it to stand out from other designers, or because it’s part of your inspiration or both?

I always try to create a fun and exciting environment to show my designs. I want my audience to experience the collection in a celebratory and unique atmosphere, which is why I chose dancers as the models this season.

3. Some people say that fashion is art, others say fashion is design. What is your take in the similarities/differences between art and design when it comes to fashion?

Fashion is both art and design. Fashion is also about inspiring, story-telling and making connections.

4. Recently there has been a lot of designers who are expressing their political/social points of view in their collections. Do you think all fashion designers should use their designs to express political/social issues?

I believe it’s a personal decision for every designer and one that continues to evolve as a designer grows. Fashion is a form of expression; what one chooses to express in a collection and how he/she chooses to do so is part of a designer’s artistry.

5. What is your biggest accomplishment so far as a fashion designer?

Having the opportunity to do something that I love and that makes me happy.

6. Who is your favorite person you dressed?

I’ve had the opportunity to dress many people. I recently dressed Fabolous at my FW17 Runway Show at NYFW, which was extremely exciting.

7. What is your favorite editorial?

It’s exciting for me to see my collection in editorial and be able to connect with new audiences. I love seeing how my collections are interpreted by different people.

8.Fashion changes over the years, what do you think fashion is like now and what do you think fashion will be like in the future?

Fashion is like a spiral where present, past and future are woven together. Fashion is constantly evolving, while also honoring its history. 

Video by: Chris Sarmanto
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