Whole9Yards was launched in September 2013 by China-born Widelia Liu, who decided to sink her brand’s roots in Singapore for its favourable business opportunities. Heading up the brand’s design team is former Star Creation fashion design competition winner Daniel Ngoo (above). Prior to this, he was on the design team at Raoul and worked for top Malaysian designer Lee Khoon Hooi.
Why know it
Whole9Yards is where femininity meets cool. Copious amounts of lace, embroidery and floral prints give it the feminine touch, which is balanced out by structured silhouettes for that edge.
In terms of its retail strategy, consider it brave and ambitious. It was one of the first few local brands to experiment with a service that allowed shoppers to order items to try at home and pay for only those they chose to keep. Then, its tech-savvy founder introduced an online fitting room on its website for shoppers to create personalized 3D models based on their own bodies to virtually try on clothes. In 2014, it opened not one but two stand-alone stores, a week apart from each other.
While all these initiatives and stores are no longer around, Whole9Yards constantly looks for fresh new ways to stay in the game. At the end of the month, it will launch a new website design, and come September, it takes on Australia with its first international runway show at the Perth Fashion Festival.
What to expect in F/W ’16
You’ll see its F/W ’16 pieces on Australian social media influencer Zanita Whittington (above), who is collaborating with the brand this season. Drawing inspiration from scientific illustrator Maria Sibylla Merian’s botanical and butterfly drawings, Ngoo takes the Whole9Yards girl out into the wild. Eyelet cut-out and tatting lace trimmings have been used on crop tops, skirts, and dresses to recreate intricate patterns found only in nature. This season, florals come in less romantic styles and appear more mysterious in autumnal shades.
Where to buy