As one of Vogue Italia’s “Future generation of talent”, Malaysian born Cassey Gan’s FW18 presentation was hotly anticipated at London Fashion Week. In fact, her graduate collection was one of just twenty five womenswear collections selected by London College of Fashion for its external press show in 2012 – not bad for someone who began her higher education reading Chemical Engineering.
If you read my post on the Kristel Kuslapuu FW18 presentation at Fashion Scout, you’ll know that my top tip is to head in around 15 minutes before close for the best views and angles of the collections, not the case with Cassey Gan. The interest for Gan’s FW18 collection was peak and even right up to close, the hall was pretty much full. Gan’s collection is pure, clean and striking. She plays with dimensions which challenge the perception of each individual garment, whether it’s an offset shoulder, or an asymmetric cut that isn’t quite obvious at first glance, the collection seeks to challenge our self perception. The presentation itself was a lot easier to navigate than some of the others, despite being static, the models used the stage and raised blocks in the room to ensure that even if you weren’t right up close, you still got a decent view of the garments. Or at least the top half of them.
When creating her FW18 collection, Gan explored how social media has caused society to create almost fictional versions of ourselves in the pursuit of perfection. As beauty standards become more pronounced and culturally accepted, the line between fiction and reality becomes blurred and we tend to forget our true selves, constantly self editing until the line between truth and untruth is no longer detectable.
In addition, Gan also considered the works of Maria Svarbova when developing her concise collection – where a seemingly picturesque utopia is juxtaposed by the dullness of Svarbova’s subjects – Gan used the visual aspects of these pictures as a direct reference in her choice of print and textile. With repetition as the common denominator, ripple patterns cascade the collection in pastel blues with accent hues of tomato red. Detachable layers held together by gold metal fixtures also give a nod to art deco.
With the macro trend for clashing prints showing no signs of abating, Gan has taken this to the next level by combining multiple prints in one garment. The collection seems rooted in style over fashion by using classic layering, wearable and interesting accessories and bold primary colours as it’s M.O. and it’s one that will no doubt be plagiarised by high street stores who have a hand in their own print design. It’s only a matter of time before Zara are passing these striking yet wearable prints off as their own.