guo pei

Guo Pei at her Spring ’16 presentation during Singapore Fashion Week (SGFW).

Artists she admires

“(Dutch post-impressionist painter) Vincent Van Gogh and (French impressionist painter) Oscar-Claude Monet. The former for the way he expressed his emotions through his artworks, and the latter for his use of vibrant colour.”

Favourite museums

“To me, the museums I’ve visited in (far-flung places like) Iran, Cuba and Mexico are all different and unique. When I was in Russia and New York, I spent one entire day in a museum (in each respective city). I’ve also been to the Peranakan Museum in Singapore three times, and I spent a lot of time there looking at details like (the intricately beaded slippers) and how pearls are cut and arranged. ”

Intricate embroidery is a Guo Pei signature.

An Asian designer who deserves more attention

“Indonesian fashion designer Tex Saverio, who designed Katniss Everdeen’s wedding dress in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. I find his works dramatic, bold and powerful, and felt awed when I saw his pieces.”

A personal interest that has impacted her designs most

“I’m attracted to structures and lines, and people have commented that my work reflects an architectural feel.”

The stunning finale of the Guo Pei show at SGFW.

Favourite places to shop

“The antique markets in London, Paris or Italy. I like to dig up little rare finds there. I’m not interested in shopping at modern malls.”

Her most recent antique buys

“I bought many mini fine art drawings, as well as white ceramic sculptures and antique mirrors, in Paris recently. I like how they exemplify the fashion of a particular era.”

Every look down the runway also came paired with beautifully ornate dangly earrings.

Best restaurant to visit in Beijing

“Jian Yi restaurant, which is owned by my friend. It has a lovely ambience, and the chef gives a lot of focus to the presentation of his dishes without compromising on quality. It serves Beijing dishes that have been skilfully blended with Chinese imperial cuisine.”

Most inspiring place she visited recently

“Savannah and Atlanta in the United States. There’s an art university called the Savannah College of Arts and Design that inspired me in particular. (After my visit there) I realised that art is ubiquitous and everywhere; we just need to be touched by it. The Peranakan tiles on the walls (of the Intercontinental Hotel where this interview is taking place), too, have also inspired me during my stay in Singapore – they are a perfect example of East meets West.”


Like this? See what went down at Guo Pei’s show at Singapore Fashion Week, what you need to know about the top Chinese couturier and the stylish folks spotted at SGFW.