Jason Wu is one of the most celebrated designers of his generation who dresses some of the US’ most influential women, but he says there's one elusive Australian lady he wants to woo.
"I'd love to dress Cate Blanchett," Wu told AFP, barely missing a beat when asked if there was a woman he would love to dress but hasn't yet.
The 46-year-old actress, mother of four and two-time Oscar winner is currently earning fresh Academy Award buzz for playing a bisexual woman in 1950s New York in her latest film Carol, which premiered at Cannes recently.
The star is set to move from Sydney, Australia to the US with her family later this year, so perhaps Wu will get his chance.
"I just think she's so chic," he said backstage at his Spring/Summer 2016 show during New York fashion week. "She's somebody that embodies everything that's inspiring – great actress, great poise, sophisticated style."
Sophisticated style is what the 32-year-old Taiwanese-Canadian designer is all about.
Last week, he cemented his reputation for flawless, feminine clothes by unveiling a collection called "glamour" – spotlighted by ruffles, paired with frayed edges and fringing, that re-imagined the 1950s.
Shown in a Tribeca loft, with floor to ceiling windows looking onto the majestic New York skyline – overcast after heavy September rains – the designer with a cherubic face and infectious smile received warm applause.
Wu said he liked "the idea of doing a ruffle in a way that felt not overly prissy, that felt sophisticated and elevated, grown up."
"Just feeling like that flourish of femininity was in the air – of course, I'm quite a feminine designer so you know it's something that I was really happy to be able to present today," he said.
Key colours were dark forest green, dark rust and a little bit of pink to off-set ubiquitous essentials black and white. "It felt like the right time to do a collection that had a lot of rich colours, full of textures," he said.
There were ruffles at the hem of skirts, on the shoulders and around the throat, embellishing his minimalist yet feminine evening wear, and sharply tailored summer suiting with fringed micro shorts.
The award-winning designer said the work of US fashion photographer John Rawlings, who was prominent in the mid-20th century, was an inspiration.
The 1950s is "an era I'm drawn to and I keep going back to it. There's just something that felt like inspiring to me at the moment and I wanted to bring it back in a modern way."
Wu set up his label in 2006 but famously hit the big time when US First Lady Michelle Obama wore one of his gowns to the inaugural ball in 2009.
Today his clothes are sold by more than 170 retailers worldwide, and worn by the likes of Oscar winners Reese Witherspoon and Julianne Moore, and model Christy Turlington.
For the last two years, he has also been artistic director of Hugo Boss womenswear. – AFP Relaxnews
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