LONDON, United Kingdom — This month, the BoF Spotlight turns to Singapore-born, London-based designer Tze Goh, whom we first came across during London Fashion Week at Vauxhall Fashion Scout’s ‘Ones to Watch.’ show. In fashion, designers often combine multiple points of reference in a single collection to give their clothes a more novel and appealing context. But Goh takes a more tightly focused approach to his work.
“I don’t really understand why there are so many themes in a collection; there’s no real reason for that,” said Goh, who trained at the Parsons New School of Design in New York and Paris, before completing his MA at Central Saint Martins in London. “For me, fashion is all about changing the silhouette of a person.”
To achieve his minimal, shape-shifting vision, Goh purposefully restricts his conceptual inputs. “I typically have one or two ideas and I work within those boundaries to make sure that the result is focused,” said Goh.
For Autumn/Winter 2011, he was inspired by the Japanese kimono and the sleek interiors of Porsche sports cars to create a tonal, minimally winsome collection that manages to be simultaneously clinical and sensual. There are grey coats with seams that make them undulate about the shoulders, navy blue shifts with arm-framing sleeves, black vests and coats with twisted lapels that are feats of tailoring and geometric charcoal jackets with voluptuous sleeves.
“I take the meaning out of garments so they don’t have so much semantics,” explained Goh. “I only focus on the shapes that they give women.”
Goh uses luxurious fabrics like wool and mohair. But to achieve the rigorous, molded structure some of his pieces demand, he sometimes makes his own materials, for example, bonding virgin wool and cashmere with 3D jersey to create slightly more rigid fabrics.
But while Goh’s work is rich in technique and innovation, his end goal is simple: to create practical clothing that’s stylistically sustainable. “I want to give women clothes that don’t shock, but are compatible with their own lives,” said Goh. “It’s something they can use for quite a bit of time, but they’re still new.”
At BoF, we wish Goh the very best of luck in pursuing his minimal, structural vision as we shine the BoF Spotlight on his contemporary silhouettes, available at our favourite new store in London, LN-CC.
The Spotlight is BoF’s showcase for emerging talent employing creativity and business acumen to make their mark in the fashion business