Ying Qu is a recently graduated Menswear designer based in London and China. Her idea through continuous experiments and attempts in the fabric, has achieved excellent graduate collection. The collection explores expansive one-piece pattern cutting between garments. We had the pleasure of speaking with her as part of our October Global Young Talents seen in Harper’s Bazaar UK.
Your collection was inspired by Voyager 1’s description of Earth as a ‘pale blue dot’ that exists among a universe of dots; do you often find inspiration from outer space?
I often watch some documentaries and movies about outer space as I am very interested in this aspect, which refreshes my understanding of life. Especially when I saw the documentary “Cassini’s Grand Finale, Cassini explored in the mysterious outer space as an aircraft without knowing what would happen and whether new life would appear. You can imagine the loneliness in the universe as a detector, however, it completed its mission finally and fell on Saturn. It was a special Saturday, which meant that silicon-based life from earth was forever connected to planets in outer space. As a result, it is a great aircraft. Actually, one interesting point in my project is that the shape of Saturn appears in my hat design, whose rings floats on the model’s head, and the dots in the clothing are like unknown planets waiting to be explored. Therefore, science, literature and art design can be integrated.
Do you mind telling us what Earth being a ‘pale blue dot’ in a universe of dots means to you?
I more clearly know how I should spend my life from the concept of the work. As Carl Sagan mentioned, On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives --on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam. Moreover, if you cannot cross the obstacle when you encounter any difficulties, you will face everything calmly by thinking about how small a grain of dust you are, and this is the impact on my own concept. Of course, if you can further understand my works, I hope this concept can be conveyed in my works.
As Carl Sagan mentioned, On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives
You used the main design methodology to research finding the perfect connection between the two garments as the pattern of the dot and the fabric will be combined through digital printing; how long did it take you to complete the whole pattern design method?
From the initial stage to investigation and survey, then to the final works, it took about six months for the whole project, since it is a process to constantly encounter problems and then solve them. In fact, it took a long time for the process of exploring pattern cutting, because I want to find an appropriate way that the jacket can be wrapped with a shirt on the basis of one piece of cutting. That is to say, the patterns on the clothes are still complete when the shirts among several clothes are worn outside in my project. However, it is absolutely not a simple thing, and after repeatedly experiments, the connection between pattern cutting and pattern presents the most comfortable state of clothing on the human body.
After repeatedly experiments, the connection between pattern cutting and pattern presents the most comfortable state of clothing on the human body. .
Do you mind telling us what your favourite part of your design process was?
My favourite design is the hat part. Although it has been changed several times, it has generally gone well. Considering that the colour of the hat and the colour of the clothing should match, so the version that wraps the surface of the hat was produced, which increased the difficulty of the craft and the production. After the shape of the hat was finished, the material of the hat is also an important part. My main designs are printing and knitting. The hat, that was divided into 6 pieces, was printed by counterpoint printing by its shape. Actually, I also used wasted hat shells and bonding fabric to create handbags. This is a specially treated black fabric that is 60% darker than ordinary black. Waste recycling is realised in this process./div>
You mention that-you are still looking for yourself, and your designs reflect the part of you looking for yourself or even someone else; do you feel as though you discovered more of yourself through your design process and its completion?
Yes, I think design is based on self-discovery, self-expression and self-creation. I can think of many different aspects through the output of one point of view in many processes. Thus, we can look at a thing from different angles. For example, in my whole collection, there are some relatively ready-made clothes and some connected clothes that can be separated into two pieces, which is an extension from my consideration of the commercial nature. As I don’t want to be too limited, I consider from all aspect, which can also push my design to a more mature stage. I hope I am able to create different myself through design and find out my own design style. I also hope you can know what kind of person I am by means of my works.
I also hope you can know what kind of person I am by means of my works.
Discover YING QU full collection
Words by Holly Cramman