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Helen Lee, the Fashion Designer 新锐设计师李鸿雁

Courtesy Helen Lee

Over the past decade, the name Helen Lee has become synonymous with Shanghai fashion. Following her graduation from the Raffles-design-institute and two years working in Japan, Helen Lee returned to Shanghai and founded street wear brand “insh” in 2003. The success of “insh” led to the creation of HELEN LEE, a premium brand known for its sophisticated and edgy designs, in 2011.

 

In 2011 HELEN LEE opened her flagship store on Fumin Road in the French Concession, marking the beginning of a new chapter in high-end Chinese fashion.

The basis for Helen Lee’s remarkable success is her adventurous design philosophy. The process begins with her diverse influences, an exciting mix of East and West, old and new, and continues through the use of sensuous materials and striking textures. Her garments combine an appealing simplicity with intricate details. Helen Lee clothing aspires to the perfect line, the perfect cut, the perfect garment. Leading to the forward front style in Chinese fashion. 

 

China and the world have taken notice. She has received numerous awards, including ELLE Style fashion award 2012, Belgium’s Les Etoiles de la Mode, and has been recognized repeatedly as one of China’s top young designers. 2014 The China’s Fashion power award. 2014 China best designer award. Her collections have been displayed at the fashion weeks of Shanghai, Stockholm and Vancouver. Fashion trendsetters have also shown their support. Models, actresses and other celebrities have all been spotted wearing Helen Lee. Collaborations with companies including Disney, Swatch and Ecco, and as first designer to enter Lane Crawford fashion department store, they all have helped expose her work to a larger audience and left her poised for even greater success in the future.

1.What are some of the challenges Chinese designers face trying to break into the Chinese market? Are the same difficulties encountered by already established western companies trying to do the same?

I guess the challenges for both China & Europe are similarly, only the respect for new ideas and originality and design creative abilities are shows different, China is still in a process to accepting home growing design concept, the respect to the original designs are still quite low, and the PPL even who working in the fashion industry are still not open mind to accept the style who not following western big brand.

2.What’s your overall opinion of Chinese fashion? How would you define it and how is it different to fashion in other countries?

Need more original style or designs. Need a breakthrough new style or creative idea in China market. The fashion opinions should encourage those who are working hard to brings the burst and fresh blood in China fashion market, not only sees the surface, not only accept it’s just showing pretty, also need seen deep side of the originally designs, new concert & styles.

3.Your designs have garnered attention as far afield as Singapore, Canada and Australia. Do you have plans to expand globally?

We are planning to expand globally, just waiting for the best opportunity and good entrance. These need us to prepare the good collection also need some good introduction from some international buyers and also might help from those fashion opinion leaders who have powers to introduce us to the international market as well. The fashion industry is not easy to just go in, it needs find a way to bring in. it’s not like other industries just showcase the good products, its needs more other relationships such like find a right person or company to bring in.

4.You spent some time honing your skills in Japan, which is famous for producing some very eccentric subcultures in terms of dress. How does this compare with China?

I learn a lot from Japan, especially the details & functional designs, and always care about the qualities. Also the overall styling and colors combination, also the presentations. And always being creative and functions.

5. Tell us about what we can expect from your collections this autumn/winter.

This 2015 A/W is to experience the Yi Minority culture & their sprit of life and art.

 

李鸿雁(Helen lee )是深受国际关注的中国知名设计师,是生长在上海的本土设计师。是2009-2011中国十大杰出青年设计师获得者,2012 “ELLE风尚大典中国年度最佳独立设计师大奖。2014中国时尚权利榜中国最佳设计师大奖、2014中国年度风尚设计师大奖等等。经常被国内外媒体报道如《VOGUE》、《ELLE》、《FLARE》、《时代日报》、《欧洲日报》、《德意志日报》、《芬兰日报》、《瑞典日报》等,并得到广大消费者的好评,2006年更被时装巨头H&M 的杂志誉为中国的街头装女王The queen of street wear)。2003年她创立的上海高街时尚概念品牌“insh”,成为第一个以城市为概念的集时尚、生活为主题的概念品牌,获得年轻时尚消费者的追捧。2011年创立的高级成衣定制品牌“HELEN LEE””业已成为中国独立设计师品牌的翘楚,成为沪上独特的时尚风景。她多次受邀各个国际品牌进行跨界合作,如迪士尼、SWATCH 等,她经常获得国际百货公司和国际买手的喜爱,并作为首批三名中国设计师的其中一名入驻知名的连卡佛以及老佛爷百货公司。当许多其他设计师专注于学习欧洲T台名牌服装风格的时候,李鸿雁则回眸上海的过去,拥有的现在,想象中的将来,运用现代的设计灵感,用她独特、融合艺术和现代感十足的设计去传播和发扬中国传统元素,她所设计的作品以时髦都市风格去反映她提倡的新颖创意结合功能实用、创新结合好品味,改革求新却追求积极健康的理念。大胆反映了新时代的上海和新上海人的时尚,努力创造出独树一帜的时尚风格。在国际、国内业界内获得很大的声誉和赞誉。

1. 关于如何打开中国市场,你觉得中国本土设计师正面临着怎样的挑战?这种挑战与现有的西方品牌所面临的是一样的吗?

我想,中国和西方所面临的挑战都是类似的,只是,对于新思想、原创和设计创意能力的尊重程度有所不同。中国目前还处于正在接受本土化设计理念的过程中,对于原创设计的尊重程度还很低,甚至于时尚行业的从业者也还不能够开放地去接受不模仿西方主流品牌的风格。

2. 你对中国时尚总的看法是什么?你会如何为之下定义,或者它和其他国家有什么区别?

我认为需要更多的原创风格和设计,需要有突破性的新风格,或者创意想法出现在中国的市场上。时尚界的观念是,应该鼓励那些努力为中国时尚行业带来突破和新鲜血液的人,不仅仅是看表面,不仅仅是因看起来漂亮就接受,而是更需要去理解原创设计,以及新概念、新风格的更深层面。

3. 你的设计正越来越多地受到远自新加坡、加拿大和澳大利亚的关注。你有计划在世界范围内进行扩张吗?

我们正计划在全球范围内扩展,只是还在等待最好的时机和合适的切入口。这需要我们去准备更好的作品,也需要一些国际买手关于这方面的好的介绍,而且,同样也需要时尚意见领袖把我们推介给国际市场。这不同于其他行业,只要展示出好的产品就行,这还需要诸如合适的人、合适的公司来帮我们进入市场等更多其他的关系 

4. 你在日本潜心多年雕琢自己的技术,众所周知,关于服装,日本有着非常古怪的亚文化。相比于日本,中国在这方面又是怎样的呢?

我在日本学到了很多的东西,特别是在细节和功能设计方面,并且永远要注重质量问题,同样要注意的还有风格、色彩的结合,以及展示方式,并且永远要做到创意与实用兼备。

5. 能否告诉我们,关于你今年的秋冬系列,我们能有什么样的期待呢?

关于2015年秋冬系列的主题是体验彝族文化,以及他们的生活和艺术精神。

 

©YiZhou,Helen Lee coat

 

Helen Lee, the Fashion Designer 新锐设计师李鸿雁


Courtesy Helen Lee

Over the past decade, the name Helen Lee has become synonymous with Shanghai fashion. Following her graduation from the Raffles-design-institute and two years working in Japan, Helen Lee returned to Shanghai and founded street wear brand “insh” in 2003. The success of “insh” led to the creation of HELEN LEE, a premium brand known for its sophisticated and edgy designs, in 2011.

 

In 2011 HELEN LEE opened her flagship store on Fumin Road in the French Concession, marking the beginning of a new chapter in high-end Chinese fashion.

The basis for Helen Lee’s remarkable success is her adventurous design philosophy. The process begins with her diverse influences, an exciting mix of East and West, old and new, and continues through the use of sensuous materials and striking textures. Her garments combine an appealing simplicity with intricate details. Helen Lee clothing aspires to the perfect line, the perfect cut, the perfect garment. Leading to the forward front style in Chinese fashion. 

 

China and the world have taken notice. She has received numerous awards, including ELLE Style fashion award 2012, Belgium’s Les Etoiles de la Mode, and has been recognized repeatedly as one of China’s top young designers. 2014 The China’s Fashion power award. 2014 China best designer award. Her collections have been displayed at the fashion weeks of Shanghai, Stockholm and Vancouver. Fashion trendsetters have also shown their support. Models, actresses and other celebrities have all been spotted wearing Helen Lee. Collaborations with companies including Disney, Swatch and Ecco, and as first designer to enter Lane Crawford fashion department store, they all have helped expose her work to a larger audience and left her poised for even greater success in the future.

1.What are some of the challenges Chinese designers face trying to break into the Chinese market? Are the same difficulties encountered by already established western companies trying to do the same?

I guess the challenges for both China & Europe are similarly, only the respect for new ideas and originality and design creative abilities are shows different, China is still in a process to accepting home growing design concept, the respect to the original designs are still quite low, and the PPL even who working in the fashion industry are still not open mind to accept the style who not following western big brand.

2.What’s your overall opinion of Chinese fashion? How would you define it and how is it different to fashion in other countries?

Need more original style or designs. Need a breakthrough new style or creative idea in China market. The fashion opinions should encourage those who are working hard to brings the burst and fresh blood in China fashion market, not only sees the surface, not only accept it’s just showing pretty, also need seen deep side of the originally designs, new concert & styles.

3.Your designs have garnered attention as far afield as Singapore, Canada and Australia. Do you have plans to expand globally?

We are planning to expand globally, just waiting for the best opportunity and good entrance. These need us to prepare the good collection also need some good introduction from some international buyers and also might help from those fashion opinion leaders who have powers to introduce us to the international market as well. The fashion industry is not easy to just go in, it needs find a way to bring in. it’s not like other industries just showcase the good products, its needs more other relationships such like find a right person or company to bring in.

4.You spent some time honing your skills in Japan, which is famous for producing some very eccentric subcultures in terms of dress. How does this compare with China?

I learn a lot from Japan, especially the details & functional designs, and always care about the qualities. Also the overall styling and colors combination, also the presentations. And always being creative and functions.

5. Tell us about what we can expect from your collections this autumn/winter.

This 2015 A/W is to experience the Yi Minority culture & their sprit of life and art.

 

李鸿雁(Helen lee )是深受国际关注的中国知名设计师,是生长在上海的本土设计师。是2009-2011中国十大杰出青年设计师获得者,2012 “ELLE风尚大典中国年度最佳独立设计师大奖。2014中国时尚权利榜中国最佳设计师大奖、2014中国年度风尚设计师大奖等等。经常被国内外媒体报道如《VOGUE》、《ELLE》、《FLARE》、《时代日报》、《欧洲日报》、《德意志日报》、《芬兰日报》、《瑞典日报》等,并得到广大消费者的好评,2006年更被时装巨头H&M 的杂志誉为中国的街头装女王The queen of street wear)。2003年她创立的上海高街时尚概念品牌“insh”,成为第一个以城市为概念的集时尚、生活为主题的概念品牌,获得年轻时尚消费者的追捧。2011年创立的高级成衣定制品牌“HELEN LEE””业已成为中国独立设计师品牌的翘楚,成为沪上独特的时尚风景。她多次受邀各个国际品牌进行跨界合作,如迪士尼、SWATCH 等,她经常获得国际百货公司和国际买手的喜爱,并作为首批三名中国设计师的其中一名入驻知名的连卡佛以及老佛爷百货公司。当许多其他设计师专注于学习欧洲T台名牌服装风格的时候,李鸿雁则回眸上海的过去,拥有的现在,想象中的将来,运用现代的设计灵感,用她独特、融合艺术和现代感十足的设计去传播和发扬中国传统元素,她所设计的作品以时髦都市风格去反映她提倡的新颖创意结合功能实用、创新结合好品味,改革求新却追求积极健康的理念。大胆反映了新时代的上海和新上海人的时尚,努力创造出独树一帜的时尚风格。在国际、国内业界内获得很大的声誉和赞誉。

1. 关于如何打开中国市场,你觉得中国本土设计师正面临着怎样的挑战?这种挑战与现有的西方品牌所面临的是一样的吗?

我想,中国和西方所面临的挑战都是类似的,只是,对于新思想、原创和设计创意能力的尊重程度有所不同。中国目前还处于正在接受本土化设计理念的过程中,对于原创设计的尊重程度还很低,甚至于时尚行业的从业者也还不能够开放地去接受不模仿西方主流品牌的风格。

2. 你对中国时尚总的看法是什么?你会如何为之下定义,或者它和其他国家有什么区别?

我认为需要更多的原创风格和设计,需要有突破性的新风格,或者创意想法出现在中国的市场上。时尚界的观念是,应该鼓励那些努力为中国时尚行业带来突破和新鲜血液的人,不仅仅是看表面,不仅仅是因看起来漂亮就接受,而是更需要去理解原创设计,以及新概念、新风格的更深层面。

3. 你的设计正越来越多地受到远自新加坡、加拿大和澳大利亚的关注。你有计划在世界范围内进行扩张吗?

我们正计划在全球范围内扩展,只是还在等待最好的时机和合适的切入口。这需要我们去准备更好的作品,也需要一些国际买手关于这方面的好的介绍,而且,同样也需要时尚意见领袖把我们推介给国际市场。这不同于其他行业,只要展示出好的产品就行,这还需要诸如合适的人、合适的公司来帮我们进入市场等更多其他的关系 

4. 你在日本潜心多年雕琢自己的技术,众所周知,关于服装,日本有着非常古怪的亚文化。相比于日本,中国在这方面又是怎样的呢?

我在日本学到了很多的东西,特别是在细节和功能设计方面,并且永远要注重质量问题,同样要注意的还有风格、色彩的结合,以及展示方式,并且永远要做到创意与实用兼备。

5. 能否告诉我们,关于你今年的秋冬系列,我们能有什么样的期待呢?

关于2015年秋冬系列的主题是体验彝族文化,以及他们的生活和艺术精神。

 

©YiZhou,Helen Lee coat