Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Jason Wu

Remember, quite a few posts ago, I talked about the 34 designers that had imagined a dress for Michelle Obama's Inaugural Ball.
Well, Michelle Obama made her choice last night, and the happy designer was Jason Wu, a 26 year old Taipei native (scroll down to read his full bio). Here is the cute story on how he found out he was THE one (it's a copy/paste from Vogue UK) :

WHEN Michelle Obama chose to wear a floor-sweeping, one-shouldered, crystal-encrusted dress by upcoming American designer Jason Wu to last night's inaugural celebrations, there was one person who was more surprised than most to see her reveal her much-anticipated wardrobe choice: Wu himself.

"I had no idea," the designer tells WWD, confessing that he only found out about the coup when Michelle appeared on television as he was watching the proceedings with friends. "I found out with everyone else - which was pretty fabulous, when you think about it."

It was indeed, and all the more so considering that Tapei-born Wu established his label as recently as February 2006 and is only 26 years old. Yet, despite the recession - and even prior to getting the Obama style nod - Wu found himself taking on extra staff earlier this month as demand increased for his fairytale confections.

Fashion, he maintains, is a "sort of escapism, and women need beautiful dresses to lose themselves in". It's little wonder that he scooped Fashion Group International's prestigious Rising Star Award for 2008. With the First Lady backing him, Wu has become a household name overnight - and there can surely only be bigger and better things to come.

"Last year was a great year for us," he tells The Daily. "It was our year of growth, our biggest year yet. We really expanded our stock list across the country and internationally, and we launched in Japan. I'm not going to say it's not difficult, but I feel like at this particular moment in time, there is still room for special things."

Now, about Jason Wu, his website reports :

Although only 26, the Taipei native has already achieved many accomplishments. His family moved to Vancouver when Wu was 9 where he began learning how to sew, draft patterns, and sketch in fashion proportions by using dolls as mannequins. At the age of 14, he went to study sculpture in Tokyo and then spent his senior year of high school in Paris, where he decided to become a fashion designer. Wu then enrolled in the prestigious Parsons School of Design and interned with Narciso Rodriguez.

In February 2006 he debuted his collection, emerging as one of the leading new American talents. The Jason Wu collection is carried at Bergdorf Goodman, Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus, Ikram, Nordstrom, Susan of Burlingame and Louis Boston. The fashion star is a favorite among press, stylists and celebrities including Amber Valetta, Leighton Meester, Joy Bryant, Gretchen Mol and Kerry Washington.

Jason continues to receive accolades including Fashion Group International's Rising Star Award for Women's Ready-to-Wear in January 2008 and in July 2008 he was named one of the finalists in the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund

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