Bridging the Gap Between Real & Virtual

In conversation with the designer behind the pioneering brand.

A chat with New York City-based fashion designer, who established her eponymous brand soon after completing the Parsons Fashion Design and Society MFA program in 2022. Her label seamlessly blends avant-garde, inventive techniques with traditional craftsmanship, challenging conventional norms and transforming ordinary items in the realm of fashion design.

Let us begin at the very conception of Weiraen as a label – what motivated you to pursue a career as a fashion creative, and how did Weiraen come to be?

I moved to New York to pursue a MA degree in Fashion Design at Parsons in 2019. It was quite a natural transition for me as I approached the end of the program. I really can’t see myself doing anything else than creating my own brand and building my own visual language, especially after presenting my thesis collection. I realized how much I enjoyed creating a complete collection, even though it was a mentally and physically draining process. The debut collection was the starting point for weiræn with how well it was received on social media and with press. With that encouragement and positive feedback, I decided to embark on this journey.

Weiraen has rightfully won its place in the realm of fashion labels which keep blurring the line that separates traditional clothing-making from a more contemporary form of conceptual fashion design. What does it take for an upcoming talent as yourself to be a multidisciplinary in addition to the effort it takes to be a designer?

It takes a lot of hard work for sure. I never want to put boundaries on myself and I’m always pushing myself to study and explore things that are outside of just fashion and garments. I was very interested in 3D scanning, modeling and printing during my time at Parsons, and I invested so much time and energy in the experiments of these technologies and in linking that knowledge to my design. Now I’m quite an expert in 3D printing but I’m ready to move on to the next thing.

Last year you were one of the 30 creatives who worked with Nick Knight and Jazzelle (@uglyworldwide) on an exclusive NFT collection titled ikon-1. What was that experience like, and what is your opinion on the rapid digitalisation of fashion?

Nick Knight is such an iconic figure in the fashion industry, so I was so shocked and thrilled at the same time when I got the email from his team. The actual collaboration process was surprisingly smooth and organic. SHOWstudio is a team of professional who are incredibly supportive to new designers. I think the rapid digitalization of fashion is inevitable, but I didn’t integrate it into my visual language just because it was a trendy thing to do.

In the past you’ve spoken out about being inspired by “the symbiosis of the organic and the artificial”, and one can’t help but notice how this concept has shaped the nucleus of Weiraen as a brand. Where does your fascination with this unorthodox coexistence come from?

I have a natural instinct and curiosity to observe little details in life, and manifesting from those observations and thinking out of the box. Whenever I see something ordinary, I can’t help but expand from it, thinking a lot about the logic behind it and its infinite possibilities in the future.

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Weiraen / Bridging the Gap Between Real & Virtual

Credits:

Brand: @weiraen
Photography: @zhongjia.sun
Director & music: @drizzlinnnnng
Model: monika lagadze & ming zhou
Production: @guazi.jun
Styling assistants: ray & @k._sying
Interview: @sedefnihat

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