During his travels, David has grown accustomed to different cultures “One of the ways to understand them is through their clothing.” The shirt from Indonesia is traditional batique, part of their formal wear is made from silk. “It’s beautiful with fantastic print, so different from what we know as formal wear in the west. It reminds me of my time in South East Asia." Feeling the essence of 60’s-70’s psychedelic rock and roll "I found it interesting in the east that translated as formal wear, it also really fitted in with my own aesthetic." Travelling through South Korea where they have “A good streetwear scene, everyone has their own thing going on so I really like that whole vibe” he sourced the t-shirt underneath. The scripture translated from Korean means 'peace'.
The ensemble is a Jinbei, in Japanese. "They are summer pyjamas in Japan. I love Japanese culture, I’ve watched many films and anime, read lots of manga growing up so I’m fascinated by it.” Complementing it's shape and line he continues “It’s comfy as hell, so in the summer I’m just rocking pyjamas all the time. Indoor wear for outerwear is the best thing.” The scarf picked up in China is actually a table cloth “In China when we have banquets there would usually be an elaborate long table cloth with embroidered dragons." Appreciating it's beauty and craftsmanship he chose to bestow a new lease of life “What I like to do with clothing is have as much fun as possible. I don’t really care what it is or when in the year, I throw it on.”
A graduate of film studies at Kings College London he has come to understand many different eras and subcultures of film. “That is where I get most of my style from because there is such a strong visual reference. When I dress I like to embody a character. I go through phases like right now it’s winter I’m in a cowboy phase with shirts, shearling and fur, I have a cowboy hat. It’s fun, it cuts you out from the whole cyclical nature of fashion where there are two seasons with each season’s trends. I don’t really identify or pursue these trends per say, I find the references for myself.” Although the works of 90's Hong Kong Director Wan Kai and American Greg Araki from the earlier part of the decade are influential in his style, Dazed and Confused by Richard Linklater is the film that resonates the most. Through music Jefferson Airplane and Patti Smith add to the catalogue of style influence. “Growing up in a Chinese family I didn’t really experience it, usually you pick those things up from your parents, your taste in music, what you are exposed to, but I didn’t. I was lucky to discover all of this at a later age so I can appreciate what it was through my own eyes, to pick apart what I like and what rings true to me.”
Considering style in others “Good style is a strong personal voice, a well-defined individuality. Fashion and style are very different things. Fashion is a cycle of trends that you can buy into or not at all, personal style is where you can have fun with clothing." Exploring the ideology further "Good style doesn’t have to be good taste, you can have very bad taste that can be read as good style. Because style is subjective dress how you want, do whatever you feel is most fun, that’s important.”
As a model, he understands “Your vantage point is you can see how everything works so you learn more about the history of fashion. You realise it’s not just a purely superficial thing, there is so much more going on underneath, each visual reference for a designer is pulled through lots of investigation.” Industry Figures he sights as influential in his style development are Japanese Designers, describing them as “Self-referential, they are not influenced by others.” Rei Kawakubo of Commes Des Garçons who has “Been doing her own thing for so long, she’s so individual and doesn’t give a **** about what other people are doing” remains a strong example for him. Furthermore Miharayasuhiro "He mixes traditional Japanese wear with modern streetwear. It’s really his own voice, which is refreshing when you are in a saturated industry." This made walking the SS17 show during London Men's Collection a fulfilling experience for him.
From the memories of his family enhanced through photos he acknowledges China's rich history “For good or bad it’s had a unique story even style-wise because clothes do reflect the times." Inheriting military clothes from his parents time serving in the Chinese army he wears them now extending the longevity of the garments. Living in London he has many friends across the creative school network “Everyone is busy creating something. What they create is such a reflection of themselves, that strong sense of individuality is inspiring, you develop more your own sense of self."
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