Saturday, February 14, 2015

Sebastian Gunawan | A Joyful Chinese New Year Collection

Colorful and playful designs dominated the Chinese New Year collection by renowned designer Sebastian Gunawan, bringing a festive mood to his otherwise classy style. 

In his fashion show, titled “Moon Dance”, Sebastian translated the characteristics of the moon for the runway, showcasing 68 designs that explored the possibilities of the Chinese cheongsam neckline.

The show, which was held at Hotel Mulia in Senayan, South Jakarta, was divided into three parts. Sebastian opened the show with items produced in colorful, feminine silhouettes.

“Chinese New Year is usually represented with red, but I don’t dominate my designs with it. I chose to use many colors instead to capture the playfulness and happiness that the moon brings,” Sebastian says.

A peplum lavender blouse with embroidery detailing the belly paired with a long white skirt; a cut-out dress with colorful floral motif; and a sack dress with embroidery on the chest were among the simple, attractive designs.

“I also wanted to bring modern silhouettes in this collection. For example, there was a time when loose, trumpet-sleeve blouses were a trend, and I wanted to bring that back by changing it into a sack dress,” he said.

Sebastian, who teamed up with his designer and wife, Cristina Panarese, followed up in the next section with monochromatic gowns featuring a lot of black and white, as well as red in some pieces.

Their creativity saved the monochromatic clothes from looking dull.

Items included long, semi-transparent white gown; a paired black-and-white cheongsam-tailed blouse featuring a floral motif and a knee-length skirt; a sleeveless cheongsam dress with ruffles; and a long, black dress featuring a high side-slit and a white body suit.

“Cheongsam is the main element in my collection. Usually cheongsam outfits have sleeves, but I wanted to show people that it could also be made without them. The result is a little bit like a halter neck,” Sebastian said.

Three-piece outfits that mixed skirts, blouses and small capes offered a modern touch to the collection. Sebastian and Cristina also put a Chinese tassel between the high-side slits in the gowns.

In the final section of the show, silver-and-gold gowns were on display, showcasing Sebastian and Cristina’s craftsmanship. The sack dress, flared dress, two-tier long dress and Chinese traditional dress were made from, among other materials, damask, jacquard, and Mikado.

“In some dresses, I played a lot with beads, putting them in layers to form certain images or motifs,” he said.

Long gloves, meanwhile, worn by the models lent a dramatic air to the each outfit.

It was distracting, however,  to see some clothes with threads hanging from the hem.

Overall, the attention to nuance was felt deeply throughout the fashion show, enhanced by the make-up of small eye-liner high, thin eyebrows, hairpins, and pointy buns.

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