Lu will get candid about his time on Netflix’s “Subsequent in Style,” working overseas and his latest assortment.
They are saying what’s meant to be, might be — and Charles Lu is a testomony to that. When his profession serendipitously kicked off after an unlucky snub, Lu proved to the world that no matter any setback, he’s destined to rise to success. From starring within the inaugural season of Netflix’s Subsequent in Style to launching his eponymous label and having a runway present at Style Artwork Toronto’s annual spring showcase earlier this 12 months, there’s no slowing down. Nicknamed “Panda,” Lu has established a signature black, white and gray palette on a few of the most distinct silhouettes within the recreation.
For FASHION’s Winter difficulty, Lu spoke to us about how he bought his begin designing garments, the hurdles confronted alongside the best way and the icons he goals of dressing.
You had been born in Hamilton, Ont., however your dad and mom are from Vietnam. How has your background influenced your relationship with vogue?
“My dad and mom got here to Canada due to the Vietnam Warfare and actually left all the things behind. So I all the time remind myself to be fearless, and after I say fearless, I imply it’s OK to be scared — you simply can’t let that concern paralyze you. However I’ve all the time been the dreamer of the household, and I took a really non-traditional route. I needed to show to my dad and mom what I used to be able to, and I stated, ‘If I’m going to enter vogue, I’m going to succeed.’”
Is it true that your first vogue present was at age 12?
“Eleven or 12. After I was a child, my mother by no means let me use her stitching machine, and I used to be like, ‘In the event you’re not going to let me use it, then I’m going to make garments out of recycled supplies.’ So in Grade 6, I proposed doing a stand-alone vogue present at my college and made clothes out of plastic baggage, pop cans, tape and issues like that.”
You’ve beforehand stated that the style world wasn’t very form to you whenever you had been in London, England. Are you able to broaden on that?
“Throughout my time in London, I labored for a model the place I designed the gathering as a full inventive director. However earlier than the present, I used to be demoted to a ghost designer they usually took credit score for all the things I made. The corporate even took my sketchbook — the entire thing was loopy! Serendipitously, a couture purchaser who attended that present began following my profession and years later handed alongside my identify to Netflix for its new actuality competitors collection Subsequent in Style.”
With a second season of Netflix’s Subsequent in Style on its manner, what recommendation would you give to the brand new contestants?
“Be prepared to adapt, and hold all the things sincere. Keep in mind that it’s a TV present first and a contest second.”
The place does your love of black and white come from?
“The primary black-and-white piece I made was whereas I used to be finding out at Istituto Marangoni in London. I used to be 21, and one thing simply clicked that day. I used to be like, ‘Oh, my God, I actually love this.’ Now it’s what I’m recognized for — additionally as a result of I solely put on black and white in my private life, which is why my nickname is ‘Panda.’”
What was the inspiration behind your newest assortment?
“This assortment was all about strains. In the event you’re creating clear strains, you possibly can’t disguise behind something — they must be good. So, actually, it was the final word flex of my ability. I additionally needed to marry the worlds of couture and streetwear, so I took utilitarian materials, like parachute nylon, and made them look extra classically lovely.”
What’s subsequent for Charles Lu?
“I need these appears to be accessible to the general public, so ultimately I’d like to arrange e-commerce and a bodily retailer with the assistance of a enterprise accomplice and monetary backer. Within the meantime, I’ll most likely do a number of mini releases. The subsequent assortment is nearly fully designed in my head. It might simply be a continuation of this one as I really like the route I’m heading in.”
Charles Lu shares three celebrities he would like to see in his newest appears:
This text first appeared in FASHION’s Winter difficulty. Discover out extra right here.