Two years after joining London Fashion Week’s official calendar, Royal College of Art alum Jiaen Cai this season secured the opportunity to host his first runway show for his namesake label J E Cai.
He did not disappoint. The show was the best execution of his Algorithmic Modular System to date.
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Inspired by the Taoism classic “Tao Te Ching,” his concept behind the system is similar to playing with Lego. Each piece of apparel can be disassembled into different components and reattached to create new looks. He’s given his base layers, components and extras the numbers 10, 100 and 1,000, respectively, to let the wearer know the logic behind his garment system.
“Taoism founder Taozi explains how everything in the world is formed, from nothing to one, from one to many. My system follows the same ideology, from one system it breeds infinite possibilities,” he said.
At the same time, he expanded the scope beyond the Chinese military influence to include a more universal appeal fit for everyday life and introduced softer, more casual shapes and draping parts that accentuate the curved lines of the female body.
To better explain his concept, Cai put out disassembled versions of the looks on the wall, and as models wearing the same look stood next to them, his idea became self-explanatory.
Launch Gallery: J E Cai RTW Spring 2024
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