Meet the 1st Runner Up of the House of Sheens – MDIS Collaboration: Coral Cai! Coral works full time and still has the energy to pursue her passion in fashion… She is really the ultimate modern lady whom we should all aspire to become! We caught up with her to learn more about her experience and inspiration.
  1. Why did you choose to take up Fashion Design at MDIS?

The reason why I chose to take up this Fashion Design course at MDIS is because of its curriculum that is in-line with what I wanted to learn and openness to students without art background but have great passion for fashion design. It has proven that I have made the right choice from what I have learnt and achieved now that I have completed this 1-year diploma course.

  1. Could you tell us how you have progressed as a student from the start of the program to the end?

In short, “from nothing to something”. I have not studied art as a major before and I could not really draw or paint anything presentable. Initially, design to me is very abstract and far-fetch. But now I could do fashion sketches and illustrations to present my design ideas and develop designs. Putting all that I have learn from this course and my lecturers, I am able to show my design works and make them into reality, draw them out from my mind and make them in real life.

  1. How do you think Fashion Design is relevant to your personal everyday life?

It is something that makes me happy everyday! From how I match my outfit and express myself, to looking for inspiration for my work-in-progress (be it design or non-design related).

  1. Where do your inspirations come from?

I draw inspirations from nature, architectures, people, phrases and even emotions. Anybody or anything that I can strike a chord with.

  1. Who is/are the designer(s) that you admire the most?

My Mum! She is not a professional designer, but all pretty dresses that I have worn as a toddler were all designed and sew by my Mum. She acquired her sewing skills on the job when she used to work in an apparel production company and as a home-based seamstress twenty years ago. I remembered as a child, I saw my Mum sewing wedding gowns and dresses. At that time I thought my Mum knew magic and her tool were her sewing machine and fabric scissors with gold-plated handles, transforming flat fabrics into tall, long gowns that looked enormous to me back then. My Mum used to design and make all her clothes too; T-shirts and jeans were the only things she bought off the shelves. She is my first teacher in fashion design.

The other professional Fashion Designer that I admire most will be Iris Van Herpen. I love her futuristic and unconventional style and her designs and ideas are always beyond just fashion. Her innovative designs and blending of technology in fashion always bring new insights. I also admire the way she works collaboratively with other artists/designers to come up with exemplary works.

  1. Could you show us some of your proudest works?

This is my first sports outfit I have designed and constructed. The inspiration is from the movie “Hunger Games”.

The outfit below is a short dress inspired from an active volcano. In this outfit I have view the volcano from space to create a dystopian mood.