Hubert Burda Media

Dato' Bernard Chandran mixes eastern and western influences

The designer takes traditional concepts and gives them modern reinterpretations for AW16-17

Bernard Chandran AW16-17 explores traditional concepts in a modern context. Pix by Patrice Stable
Bernard Chandran AW16-17 explores traditional concepts in a modern context. Pix by Patrice Stable

Datuk Bernard Chandran explores the old adage of ‘Give Face,’ in his latest collection, creatively reinterpreting mythical creatures like the dragon and phoenix while further expounding the idea of ‘俾面’ (Respect). ‘Give Face’ is an expression used in Chinese culture, referring to a situation when one shows respects to another, particularly if that person is older, despite disagreeing with that person’s opinion.

Bernard is perhaps one of the few designers who is able to fully develop these ideas given his cultural heritage.

“I love the melting pot of cultural differences, my heritage and the family values I was brought up in,” he says.

The Bernard Chandran label is synonymous with the concept of revolutionising traditional designs typically associated with members of the Royal family. This time, the designer cleverly incorporates the oriental aesthetic into more modern creations.

Inspirations include Chinese Opera references, Chinois sunflower motifs, royal jade embellishments and brocade refinements, ‘俾面’ in cheeky prints or dramatic 70s reveries, which are all presented into Chandran’s men’s and women’s collections. In doing so, he cleverly takes his collection through several different eras – ‘the now, the former and the future’ – in one unified theme.

Rich colours of emerald green, gold, purple, maroon, black, blue and red come in luxurious textures of brocade, silk la mè, organza and fur, conjuring up images of luxury and richness to accompany winter moods.