LIVING THE FANTASY

Let your mind escape the doom and gloom of the pandemic with frothy, frilly, whimsy-filled fashion. By Mughni Che Din

History, if it has taught us anything at all, it has taught us that through troubled times, society often looks to fashion and style as a form of coping mechanism— and this time won’t be any different. The late Alexander McQueen once mused, “Fashion should be a form of escapism, and not a form of imprisonment.” His sentiment could not be any truer, especially in the era of COVID-19.

The past year has proved to be challenging for all of us: from being confined within the four walls of our home and changing our daily habits to navigating through the ever-changing “New Normal”— no one is truly spared from the impacts of the ongoing pandemic. When the news is all doom and gloom and the idea of an exotic holiday destination is anything but a distant dream, we are in desperate need of escapism and the opportunity to immerse ourselves for a moment of fantasy.

Even amid the uncertainty of a pandemic, one tradition remains: fashion week, also regarded as one of the most important weeks of the year for any discerning fashion enthusiasts. Although the idea of a full-scale fashion presentation is considered tone-deaf now, fashion houses across the world wasted no time in shifting their runway presentation online via virtual live streaming or pre-recorded show— quenching our thirst for fashion and escapism through brilliant storytelling through their intricate designs. 

Known for her “wearable art” designs, Malaysian fashion designer Alice Jane tells us that despite the challenges she had to endure over the course the pandemic, it allowed her step out of her comfort zone and fuelled her imagination and creativity. “I believe that once the quarantine lifts, people will be yearning to dress up again, and we will see the return of maximalist glamour as a sartorial expression of liberation.” 

Her label A-JANE joins a legion of fashion houses around the world proving that it will take more than a pandemic to stop them from sharing the passion for their craft with the world. “The show must go on; business must go on and ideas must be generated and re-generated. Our digital showcase at the recent KLFW Digital Fashion Week 2020 was our attempt to bring the audience the excitement, thrill, and the joy of fashion.” says Alice Jane, before continuing, “Fashion gives your that permission to dream and takes you to a place where you can be whoever you want to be.”

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