Interview with Ones to Watch, Leaf Xia
Promptly graduated from Parsons, New York, and previously studying at Columbia University, this designer has prestigious merits already in her name. Not only was her work exhibited in Sak’s window in New York, this year Xia has been named as one of Fashion Scout’s Ones to Watch. As you can imagine, Leaf has barely had time to sit down. Fortunately for me, I caught her backstage after this year’s OTW catwalk at Freemason’s Hall. A giant thank you to Specsavers for bringing us this year's talent.
Post-catwalk buzz, she tells of this season’s circus.
“This year’s been so rushed with such a quick turn around! London Fashion Week has been such a nice opportunity especially for someone like me who has just graduated.”
With NYFW just days behind us all, I asked about the difference in fashion overseas and what stimulates Leaf as a designer.
“It’s pretty different from London. Some designers use intricate detailing – my collection resembles structures. I rely on easy to wear so my inspiration stems from New Yorkers, they are soft but have a strong personality. I combine this personality together in my collection, especially with the colours.”
It’s clear why Leaf’s collection has made it here. The colours and silhouettes ensemble beautifully together to clash – but not in a harsh demeanour.
“Although I went to Parsons, I think I got here because of my style. I guess it’s because my collection is easy to wear and simple. My creativeness comes from magazines. I like to collect pages, combine and make new prints. Then I use this on my garments. I use the same technique to sew try it out on my collection.”
Explaining textures, she plays with the collaged magazines to use over 100 different materials to form the right match. This can be seen in this collection, the floral print layered on clean block shades.
Leaf’s ethics about fashion inject a fresh look at the industry. One that is perhaps needed from everyone. She evokes that emotions are demonstrated through clothing and design, and reinforces that a good ensemble can either raise or reflect happiness.
And then suddenly I was surrounded by 30 journalists, just as eager to talk to her as I was about the post-show buzz. So that was it: my time was up. In summary, I was impressed and grateful that Leaf gave such an honest and interesting outlook to fashion, it epitomised why there should be a hunger for new talent such as herself.