Ahead of our LCFMA17 MA Fashion Design Technology Menswear catwalk show on Friday 6 January (watch it live streamed here), our graduate spotlight series, continues with the work of Wentao Shi, who’s final collection will appear at the show. Here, he tells us about his time at LCF, why he chose the MA in Menswear and what his plans for the future are.
My final collection… looks at the male body shape. The two main fabrics I used are velvet and organza. I laser cut the organza to express the different layers that can be formed in transparent fabric, and to make shadows. I chose these fabrics as a development from our first project. The velvet garments are more about the silhouette. I chose the colours green and red – red is the main colour in the collection. The late 1960s were the period of the Chinese cultural revolution – the government controlled people, and they just wore green, blue and black. Their inside was red because of this so that’s why I picked this colour.
Before my MA… I did the graduate diploma at LCF and before that I studied Art in China – I was a painter and an illustrator. I like to illustrate, and my lineup for my final collection is different from other people’s. I started painting from middle school to high school, and for two years during my BA degree, followed by two years of womenswear.
I chose LCF because… it has the best menswear course. It focuses on design and commerciality, so it’s a practical and creative course. I chose menswear because I can’t find anything I want to wear and the garments I do want to wear, are too expensive for me, so I wanted to make my own! It’s very important to balance commercial and creative design and I think that LCF is really good at this.
My top tips for students are… STUDIO – BED – GYM! These are the three most important things in your MA life. Do them all, and always keep your work in mind.
The thing I enjoyed most about my course… was being in the studio – in the studio I didn’t have to think about anything apart from my work. As a foreigner in London you have to deal with a lot of things, but being in the studio you don’t have to think about anything other than working hard.
The most challenging aspect… for me was the manufacturing of my collection because I’m not very good at sewing – I got a lot of help from my classmates.
The best thing about studying in London is… everything around OLD STREET!
My work in a few words… Romantic, contradiction, infinities, wearable, Wentao Shi.
My biggest inspiration… is art and panitings – I like James Ensor, Michael Borremans, Monet and impressionist art.
After my MA… I want to do an internship for a few months, possibly at Craig Green. After that I want to travel to Paris and across Europe for more internships. I haven’t decided what I want to do after that, but I might go back to China and start my own business – either a fashion brand or maybe something to do with social media. I write articles on my own blog about fashion and art. The Chinese market is huge and the strategies are different but I will be able to apply what I have learnt here – that’s why I came to LCF.