“In 100 years from now, how will our society look like? Will people feel lonely amongst technology? Will the people of the future feel nostalgic and want to live like we are now?” These are questions that inspired one of Bangkok’s most subversive designers, Takara Thakorn Wannawong, and his label Takara Wong’s Spring/Summer 2018 collection, “Wong2108”.
In this interview, we go behind-the-scenes with Wannawong to find out more about his culture and influences growing up, and discover the creative director’s process behind the brand’s stylistic concept and designs.
How would you define Takara Wong as a fashion label?
Takara Wong Man is “An UNCOVER / RESISTANT AND DISORDER”. These three words best describe the army of Takara Wong. We constantly work towards the motto of “Repeat Trials in The Errors Made”, which translates to: we are a high street fashion label that started from scratch, and even till now, we are always experimenting with new concepts and techniques in each collection. As long as the fashion industry never stops, we won’t too.
Your designs reflect a D-I-Y aesthetic. Does the punk movement inspire your approach to Takara Wong’s fashion collections?
Yes, the punk movement and music has always influenced my art form. We love the Sex Pistols, Rancid and Green Day, to name a few. As a kid, I grew up with different groups of subcultures and lifestyles. Other than punks, there were skateboarders, musicians, rockstars, DJs and B-Boys. These friendships allowed me to learn everything — their culture, lifestyle and fashion. Hence, the activities we’re involved in are never conventional, always pretty extreme. That’s where I draw inspiration from mostly. People inspire me, and these are the people I surround myself with.
For your SS18 collection, you translated a futuristic concept through sporty streetwear silhouettes and PVC materials. Where do you see the future of fashion and streetwear to be?
It’s a cycle — fashion references the past, which circulates to the present and then the future. Industry-wise, I think high-end fashion will continue to incorporate elements of streetwear. Style is eternal, and streetwear fashion will always have a signature based on the respective zeitgeist. For example, individuals who identify as “punks” are easily recognisable through the association with the period’s aesthetic, whether it’s a distressed element or the cut-and-paste style; same for those who relate to the culture of hip-hop. Such is the eternal style of subcultures in the streetwear movement — Sid Vicious is dead for a long time yet his style lives on! — so with advancements in technology, it’s important to innovate new materials and experiment with new techniques.