INTERVIEW WITH STEPHANIE C, FOUNDER OF STUDIO SACHH ABOUT ARCHITECTURAL FEMININITY

Yu-Hsuan Chen (preferred name Stephanie) is a Taiwanese-born, New York-based designer focused on luxury, minimal womenswear. She holds a BFA Fashion Design degree from Pratt Institute and recently graduated with an MFA Fashion Design degree from Fashion Institute of Technology. Stephanie has worked closely with designers Narciso Rodriguez, Prabal Gurung, Sally LaPointe, Caron Callahan and Asher Levine. Her mother is the first woman who inspired her with the contrast of vulnerability and strength, informing her definition of empowering women.

KREEP X STUDIO SACHH

When did you first realize you wanted to pursue a career as a designer?

Growing up in an artistic family, I always knew I wanted to pursue a career in art and design from a very young age. Thanks to my parent both being very supportive for my artistic interest, I’ve had the chance to try all kinds of different media throughout my times building an art portfolio.

When I started to investigate what kind of companies I would like to work for at the end of high school, they tend to all be fashion related brands, that was when I decided to come to New York. I like the fast phase environment New York provides me in my career, and I love how fashion is an industry that always refers to the past and innovates something new and groundbreaking.

How important is your cultural background for your brand?

Taiwan as a country is such a merging point of all cultures around – Taiwanese people are known for accepting other cultures while appreciating our own.

I would say studio SACHH carries the same energy of accepting my personality and influences of both East and Western values, the brand’s development and vision is constantly changing but welcoming. However, studio SACHH will always hold its core DNA – and that is to design for women by women, making a statement of bold, sophisticated and powerful women, as she also embraces her soft and delicate side.

It is more of a spiritual representation of my cultural background rather than having anything significant as a ‘trademark’ that we are representing Taiwan.

Who have been your biggest mentors in this industry and what is the best advice they have ever given you?

I don’t have one specific person in mind who has the biggest influence on me as a mentor. I would say every professional person I met throughout my years in New York has taught me something valuable, it shaped me into this person with the knowledge I have today.

In my opinion, the critiques we had to face during collection and idea presentations was a great way to learn how to be resilient but also make my own judgement of whether to take the comments as a criticism personally or see it as advice and suggestions to help me grow.

If you could go back and tell yourself one thing before beginning your career, what would it be?

Don’t be afraid to make mistakes and take chances in being fully creative while you can – use different materials, go out and look for inspirations, take full advantages of going ‘crazy’, stop worrying about whether the pieces are wearable. Because once you are in the reality of work industry, the focus would be business of fashion selling certain clients and audiences, there will be limitations for creativity.

What was your biggest fear when starting your own brand?

The reality of cost and sale of the products. There is no doubt that fashion is an industry that requires a lot of spending during the sampling stage, on top of that with all the marketing expenses – How does a brand keep their business going while producing a certain amount of units in order to make its profit back would be my biggest concern for me when starting my own brand. I personally think it takes a lot more than just having investor’s money to keep the brand alive. It is also important to know your audience, to compromise with social needs, as well as maintain loyal to your brand DNA and not let any outside criticism change your brand is one of the hardest balances for a brand to follow.

Who would you most like to see wearing your garments?

Jessica Chastain, Angelina Jolie, Mila Kunis, Yasmin Wijnaldum

A letter to your future self. What would you write?

Continue to trust your instincts, be patience, and know that your chance will come soon, as long as you work hard to get what you want.

Follow Studio Sachh HERE

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