Ahead of our LCFMA17 MA Fashion Design Technology Menswear catwalk show on Friday 6 January (watch it live streamed here), our LCFMA17 Graduate Spotlight series turns to MA Fashion Design Technology Menswear student Chang Zhang, who will be showing his final collection. Here, he talks to us about his inspiration, his time at LCF and why he chose MA Menswear.
My final project… is called ‘male friendship’. In my first MA project I was researching male friendship, and I found that male friendship used to be like a business relationship. I wanted to show that nowadays men have a more emotional connection with each other, sharing their inside worlds.
I used a gingham check pattern because its so classic in menswear. I wanted to use it a new way, through the use of different colours, sizes, scales of check, and contrasting colours sewn together. The technology for my collection was very hard to create. I want people to think again about gingham check application in menswear – it is possible for us to destroy the classical aspect, and do a completely new thing.
Technology is an important part of the course – when I was doing my final collection, there were so many problems with the technology, when you match the check, it’s very difficult and I spent a lot of time on this.
Before my MA… I did the graduate diploma course at LCF. Before that, I was at the Beijing Institute of Fashion Technology, where I studied fashion design, menswear, womenswear and knitting.
I chose Menswear at LCF… because I feel that menswear has more power. I can see more design development in menswear, but also because I am very tall, I can try the design on myself and see if it’s suitable for my consumer. LCF is famous in China, everyone wants to come to LCF – menswear in particular is more popular in China too. When you talk about LCF, people know about the menswear course – it is about design and technology. I think technology is an important part, because it’s an important step into the fashion industry. I want to do something commercial, I want more direct links with the fashion industry, so I came here.
Top tip for new students… Balance your idea and the tutors advice.
The highlight of the course… was the colour project, which is the second project on the MA. The project is about using colour to describe your design methodology, and I didn’t know that this was possible. Before, I just chose the fabric – the fabric is what determines the colour because you can’t design too much on colour. I also found out what some colours mean, its not just about the appearance, its an emotional thing. Ironically this was also the most challenging aspect of the course too.
The best thing about studying in London… is being in the city. It makes me feel really good!
My work in five words… contrast, colour, gingham, check, cute.
I have different muses for different projects… for my final project it was the actor Matthew Goode who plays the character of Jim in ‘A Single Man’ – directed by Tom Ford.
After my MA… I want to find a job in a studio in London first, because I want to learn more about how to work with designer brands, and more about marketing. My favourite brand in London, is J.W. Anderson. Chinese marketing is different from the UK, and I want to join the two together. In the meantime, I am also going to work on developing my own brand.