A graduate of Fashion Design batch FD1409 from ESMOD Kuala Lumpur, Will Lim Kok Leong emerged as the Winner of the Fashion Futures design competition, taking home with him RM3,500 in cash prize and an all-expenses-paid trip to a global Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, which is set to take place in Berlin, Germany this July.
Joining in the elite circuit of fashion week events in New York, London, Paris and Milan, the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Kuala Lumpur (MBFWKL) 2019 sets the stage for Malaysia and South East Asia. In its second inception, this illustrious four-day event that was held at the KL & Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall brought together the biggest names in local, regional and international fashion circles.
The Fashion Futures design competition took the runway on the final night of the Mercedes-Benz Gala. It is a platform that highlights and supports budding talent among young designers in the local fashion industry. Targeting Malaysian designers with 6 months to 4 years’ work experience in the industry, five finalists were required to produce four sets of original ready-to-wear looks based on a specific theme given.
“We were all given a very wide concept which was “Feminine Magnetism”. As for myself, I focused on how ordinary women are able to develop feminine magnetism to increase their self-worth and bring out their true selves to be loved by others. I wanted to have my garments interact with the audience’s feelings, so my designs tell a story from first to last,” explained Will on the inspiration behind his collection.
As the challenge called for the five finalists to produce 4 complete looks in 4 weeks, Will found time constraint to be the biggest challenge he faced during the competition. “I tend to spend a majority of the time on the concept or else I can never start on drawing or designing. I believe concept is the essence of it all, and by that time I realised only had about two weeks’ time left to work on the pattern-making and sewing for the collection.”
Describing himself as the worst pattern maker in his class and slower than his peers, he was always questioning his own ability on pattern-making, but knew deep down that he can do it no matter what. “ESMOD KL has been there with me throughout my learning journey, and even after graduating. The knowledge and skills I’ve acquired from there are invaluable, I’ve picked the right school,” he shared.
Currently, Lim is continuing his fashion photography career and putting more focus on his own ready-to-wear brand called “LazyHeads” which will see a launching in July. In the future, he wishes to make a brand out of his own name, “WILLIM”. In advice to aspiring fashion designers, he asserted that the concept behind the collection is the most important essence, and to put effort into it, otherwise the collection will not be felt by the people.