Masha Ma is creating anime-worthy wardrobes with a romantic twist. Forget hard-edged sci-fi apparel, the Chinese designer channels a more subtle futurism.
Currently based between Paris and Shanghai, the Bejing-born talent studied fashion at Central Saint Martins and upon graduating worked at Alexander McQueen, alongside Lee, before establishing her own eponymous label in 2011. “Studying at CSM was very inspiring and challenging at the same time,” she tells HUNGER. “I’ve never been so determined to set up my own label after my MA at CSM under Professor Louise Wilson. Her impartiality, sacrifice and perseverance nursed me into the designer I am today. She taught me in such a way that I felt I only became a real designer after her; it was the best and worst time of my life. She challenged me and I really believe I’ve learned everything I know now from her.
“I was adamant I wanted to become an artist, and knew I wanted to study Fine Art since I was a child,” Masha Ma adds. “However, I fell in love with fashion the moment I saw McQueen’s work. It made me realize that the best way to express my artistic approach was to pursue a career in fashion.”
MM’s Autumn / Winter 2018 offering “is dedicated to, and inspired by, Satoshi Kon’s 1997 anime film Perfect Blue. There are a lot of references and images from the movie which run throughout the collection.” Oversized draping, juxtaposed volumes, cool palettes and connotations to Chinese culture are key this season: edgy, feminine and with a hint of space age. We spent five minutes with Masha Ma to talk us through her unique approach to design.
Describe the MASHAMA customer in three words?
Independent, intelligent, unconventional.
What are your top three tracks to play in the studio?
Anything from Hans Zimmer!
Who is your forever style icon and why?
My grandmother. She was always so timelessly fashionable.
Your dream client to dress?
Someone strong willed and determined, who doesn’t blindly follow a trend. They should have their own voice and be totally original.
Number one advice you would you give to young designers starting out/launching their own brand?
Be careful what you wish for and always follow your heart.
What’s up next for you?
I don’t plan too far in the future anymore, whatever’s supposed to happen tends to just happen, in my experience. Eventually, however, everything works out for the best.
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23 August 2018