The womenswear designer tells Marie Davies about his on-schedule debut at LFW – and his Scott of the Antarctic obsession
Tell us in brief your journey to where you are now as a designer.
I started as a menswear designer in Korea before moving to London to do an MA in womenswear at the Royal College of Art. In my final year I was hired as a womenswear designer at All Saints, then I worked for Twenty8Twelve. Twenty8Twelve was quite challenging as I had to work on its London Fashion Week debut collection. But ultimately I realised I missed making something myself, so I decided to start my own little project, which then became my business.
Autumn 12 sees you showing on schedule at LFW for the first time. Why is now the right time?
For the past four seasons I was lucky enough to get sponsorship from Vauxhall Fashion Scout [an emerging designers’ platform] so I was showing off schedule with them. This was an amazing platform to launch my career. Now it has come to an end and I was determined to move things forward.
I thought a small presentation at Somerset House on schedule would be a very nice move.
What are your hopes for autumn 12?
I’ve always been good with international stockists but as a UK-based designer I’d love to have more stockists in the UK. What are the inspirations behind your autumn 12 collection? I’ve become obsessed with the first Polar expeditions, particularly that of Robert Falcon Scott – Scott of the Antarctic – and Ernest Shackleton, as well as [1960s German model] Veruschka von Lehndorff. It’s the centenary of Scott’s British Antarctic (Terra Nova) Expedition, so I’m paying homage to this brave explorer in my own small way.
Why did you choose to design womenswear?
When I moved to London to study I decided I wanted to try something new. I also thought that with womenswear I could be more experimental with my designs.
How do you feel emerging talent is supported in the UK?
London is the best city to incubate young talent. No other city is like it. Just look at how many new designers are coming out every season. The support for young designers from the British Fashion Council is also really amazing.
What’s the best advice you’ve been given?
Be true to yourself, believe in yourself and work hard.
What was the turning point in your career?
It has to be meeting Anna Wintour last year at the Vogue Talents exhibition in Milan.
Do you have a mentor?
I have a lot of people helping me and giving advice, for which I’m very grateful. The help I get from the CFE [Centre for Fashion Enterprise] is invaluable.
Can you sum up the Eudon Choi aesthetic in three words?
Masculine yet feminine.
What’s your proudest moment?
When I won the WGSN Lycra Style Emerging Talent Award [in 2011].
Where do you want to be in five years?
I’d like to be doing what I am doing now – on a much bigger scale.
- Eudon Choi is a womenswear designer
Who exemplifies the Eudon Choi woman?
[Actress] Chloë Sevigny and [model] Karen Elson. I’d love them to come play dress-up at my studio.
Where do you shop?
I haven’t really shopped for the past two years but I used to love to shop in Yves Saint Laurent.
What’s your favourite piece from your spring 12 collection?
Look 5, the forest green and white colour-blocking leather jacket. It’s a very simple piece but I love how it’s constructed.
Where is your favourite place to be?
The Wapping Project in east London. It’s a truly unique art space and I often go to talk ideas through with Dr Jules Wright, the founder – she is a genius.