Plate Movement was created with the idea that fashion is a way to express our inner self, and the belief that clothes represent a second body language and can create a new form of communication. Sounds farfetched? Perhaps not. Unquestionably clothes give off the first impression of oneself before we even utter a word so perhaps Juan is on to something. Either way, Juan lets you judge for yourself as he tells Eurasian Vogue more about the inspiration behind Plate movement, and how fashion found him.
Juan, Can you tell me a little more about yourself, where you studied and how you first got interested in fashion?
Actually, I was not major in fashion design; I was major in visual communication design in Chaoyang University of Technology in Taiwan. Our teacher in school taught us everything about visual design, such as advertising design or magazine layout. However, when I was a freshman, whilst preparing homework for school, I found that I really loved reading fashion magazines, more precisely, I love the inspiration that fashion magazines give me by the picture of clothes. Since then, I realized I had huge passion for fashion.
Did you work for any other designers before beginning Plate Movement?
I never worked for any designers before beginning Plate Movement. After I won the Third Prize-Best Patent Making of Taiwan Fashion Design Award, some companies asked me to be one of their designers, but all I wanted to do was begin my own brand as soon as possible. Maybe some people might say I am crazy, but I think it was my best choice ever!
Can you remember the exact moment you decided to start up the company?
Before beginning Plate Movement, I just liked fashion design, but I really remember the moment I decided to start up my own company. Once, after a runway show, the judge of the fashion design award competition and the show guide of the runway show asked me” Where I can buy the clothes you design?” I was very happy, and it was the first moment that I realized some people in this world might like my design, so I decided to start up the company.
This is the first year of your company, how have you found the first year of the start up life? Can you tell us more about the process of starting up Plate Movement?
In 2013, I got the prize from Taiwan Fashion Design Award. It was a huge number for me, but a small number for founding a company. I did a lot of research to learn how to start up the company from other designer’s interviews of magazines or the internet, and I did what I could do on limited resources, plus my huge passion for fashion, to start up Plate Movement.
There’s a very interesting concept behind your company, a message that goes beyond clothes, can you tell me more about your belief in Plate Movement’s collection making a bigger change through fashion? That they can represent a ‘second body language?’
Lots of fashion designers give their opinions and express their feeling to the world by their collections such as Vivian Westwood, Jean Paul Gaultier, and Alexander Wang. Maybe my voice (my design, or you could call it second body language) though our collection is not so big that could change the world immediately, but I truly believe that people can show their voice by what they wear. The name of Plate Movement is from the concept that what we wear will change the face of our city, just like the plate movement changes the look of earth. The wearing is not only an appearance outside but an opinion inside. In addition, the concept also shows the shapes and prints in our design.
I like the interesting cut you use in the genesis 2014 S/S collection. Can you tell me more about the fabric and the prints you’ve used?
Because I was major in visual communication design, I use my strength to design my own prints. I’m glad that I could make my dream prints easily by the technique of digital printing, and I hope I can let the prints be my voice. In genesis 2014 S/S collection, I used the natural landscape of the sky and mountains to show the feeling I found for Plate Movement, and the idea, which means we could change nature by what we wear. In 2014-15 F/W collection, I use the pictures of universe and astronauts to express the feeling that I think space movies could give people opportunities to know our past and future.
When you are designing whom do you have in mind? What kind of women is your customer?
I love to get inspiration from people on the street. They don’t have to be in the particular rage of age or looks. Who I look for has special personality, enjoys life, and has passion for something meaningful. That will make me want to dress her.
How would you describe Plate Movement in one sentence?
Ever changing, fresh, stimulating people.
How many people are in your team?
Two. We design together. Actually, we do everything together.
Where are you currently stocked?
Taiwan. Hong Kong, CROSS THE LINE online shop.
Where would you ideally like to have a storefront?
We want to have our own storefront in Taipei first, because it’s our origin, and then maybe London, due to the atmosphere there could inspire people.
Who are your style icons?
I don’t have particular style icons, but I could say I really enjoy getting inspiration from people on street.
If you weren’t a fashion designer, what other profession would you choose?
I can’t image that. Maybe a fashion buyer?
Who are the designers you look up to?
Miuccia Prada, Alexander Wang, and Alber Elbaz. Their design are always fun and know how to make woman more beautiful with their opinions.
What are your plans for 2015 for Plate Movement?
Make more and more people aware of Plate Movement by interviews, bloggers or celebrities, and look forward to our next collection.
And finally where do you see Plate movement in 5 years?
I wish Plate Movement could show in Tokyo, New York Fashion Week and Style.com.