Exclusive Interview with Chris Ran Lin
Traditional yet challenging, innovative yet wearable is what I would use to describe his design, for some of you that don't know him, his name is Chris Ran Lin, a young melbourne-based fashion designer.
A RMIT graduate, Chris' unique designs are quickly gaining attention within the industry and rightly so. He has created attention grabbing collections with his suits, belts and shoes which centre around his exceptional knitwear pieces. With all the makings of an up-and-coming young designer we decided to ask him a few questions to see who he is and how he works.
That’s it: What sparked your interest in fashion?
Chris: I think very much from my family. My mum was a dressmaker so I had seen her make clothes for people since I was little. I guess that created the sense of fashion in my childhood already. I also like new things and like to try new things and fashion is an interesting industry - it gives me freedom to express myself and take challenges in ideas.
That’s it: What made you take fashion more seriously and make a career out of it?
Chris: Lots of people like fashion just based on the beautiful image they see in magazine or online. I like beautiful things as well, but fashion can be a bit more than that. Fashion is a communication method for me to express an idea or my thoughts. I don’t like to use big wards but what made me take fashion more seriously is because I like to create using my own approach to fashion.
That’s it: Who/what has been the biggest influence on your work to date?
Chris: The biggest influence on my work I would say is my grandmother and culture of eastern and western. I grew up in a small town in the south of China and came to Melbourne when I was 18. It was a huge conflict to me in the two different types of lifestyles but at the same time it became a great opportunity to restructure my DNA of culture.
That’s it: Overall – what would you say is your strongest skill?
Chris: Maybe I would say the colour I use in my design. I love colour but personally don’t wear colour much. That is why I like to use a lot of colour in my design.
That’s it: What production techniques and materials have you enjoyed working with the most to realise your work?
Chris: I like use wool or nature fibre. The materials themselves already have the power and character, particularly wool. I enjoy knitting and creating knitted garments even though I wasn’t specialised in knitwear when I was studying at RMIT. Knitting has so much possibility to shaping or forming the structure and texture and the patterns are extremely wonderful. There are always lots of textile and fabrications recreated in my design practice.
That’s it: What processes or materials would you like to explore further in the future?
Chris: Actually I would like to explore mixing fibre for - like silk and wool together, or maybe some others. I know this has already been explored a lot by some big companies and designers but I would still like to try it my way.
That’s it: what do you consider to be the most interesting developments in the field of fashion right now and why?
Chris: I think menswear area is the most interesting development for me right now. Considering in Australia, menswear has almost been forgot about because of the lifestyle, weather and the connection to other part the world. Menswear is becoming something I like to push and take the challenge. This will be a long way to go, but it can happen as long as there are people that appreciate creative designs and the changes of mens fashion.
That’s it: Are there any types of clothing that you avoid wearing?
Chris: Good question. I guess something you feel comfortable with is the best clothes to wear.
That’s it: What do you know now that you wish you knew when you were 21?
Chris: Well another good question. I prefer to always have something I don’t know yet then I can always have the desire to discover something new.
That’s it: We all know that your collection is targeting menswear, would you consider to do more womenswear?
Chris: In fact I am preparing a new collection for women so please stay tuned.
To know more about him please visit http://www.chrisranlin.com/ or follow him on Instagram @chirsranlin.