1883 caught up with Ryan Lo ahead of his retrospective show this Saturday at London’s Southbank Centre. Ryan’s approach to fashion design is fun loving with an undeniable super sweet approach to femininity, garnering him attention from Lulu Kennedy back in 2012. Speaking of the NEWGEN sponsorship experience and how it helped his career, Ryan said, ‘It put me on the London map in the quickest possible way! Now I am everywhere (in all the fashion parties!) haha”.
The retrospective itself is unique in its approach to inclusivity, open to the public in two time slots with over eight seasons of work on display to look up close. Sabrina Henry, Fashion Curator for Southbank Centre, said: ‘We’re delighted to showcase Ryan’s collections at our first ever dedicated fashion weekend. Fashion Undressed with MasterCard explores fashion and creativity in all its forms and uncovers how these influences work to create our personal style and individual identity.”
So here’s our interview with Ryan ahead of this rewarding project, where he describes his journey in his own fun and fabulous way.
Tell us a bit about your journey so far.
I am Arya Stark in the House of Black and White. I am none and nothing!
How would you describe your approach to fashion design?
You’re known for your super sweet and feminine designs. One of our favourites was your SS15 ‘LAY ALL YOUR LOVE ON ME!’ collection complete with mermaids. How do you arrive at these characters?
I was really into ABBA the movie with Meryl Streep [Mamma Mia]…. so it just made sense to do the Amanda Seyfried Greek mermaid hair and I just went with it!
Take us through the steps you go through to realise an idea into a collection.
Mood> Music> Shoes> Clothes
Why do you think such schemes are integral to helping younger fashion designers?
Its just fucking great, they give you money, put a spotlight on you and you show your work at Fashion week!? Can not be better!
Do you have any tips for younger designers?
Don’t start your own thing until you know you are going somewhere. Have faith in yourself, be realistic and have lots of fun doing it! Enjoy the moment!
What’s it like being a young fashion designer in London?
Hard but fun
What led you to create a retrospective of your work?
Southbank Centre’s Fashion Curator Sabrina Henry approached me and I said ‘YES!’ it was the right timing.
How did you come to choose your favourite looks for the retrospective?
I work with my favs and Victoria Young on the styling; there are 3 sections Florals (Plants)! Bunnies (animals)! Sugar-plum Fairies (Food/ Human) to cover all of the senses!
Your show is open to public, helping to bring the catwalk experience to a mass. Why was this important for you?
Whitney Hudson ‘I’m Every Woman!’
Ryan Lo’s retrospective will be held as part of the Southbank Centre’s “Fashion Undressed” Festival on Saturday 23rd July 2016 at 1pm and 2:45pm. The festival explores ‘real fashion for real people’, bringing together big names from across fashion, music, art and technology to celebrate and better understand fashion and its societal impact.
Words by Sofia Khan