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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

London Press

An Interview with fashion press online at London.

Rico Rinaldi, A New Generation Of Style

An interview with the talented designer
by Sophia Hélène Price

The Big Four Fashion Weeks are the opportune time to discover the latest trends as well as up and coming designers. With fresh talent from NEWGEN and the rising stars ofVauxhall Fashion Scout, support is definitely on hand for the emerging designers of the west but the struggle to establish oneself in the gruelling fashion industry is even greater for the graduates of the east.
Determined to make a name for himself, Malaysian designer Rico Rinaldi was not about to let this deter him and his latest collection is certainly worth talking about! I was lucky to be given the chance to talk to this passionate artist and discover the personality behind his unique creations.

‘When I was younger my mum bought a sewing machine because she wanted to make clothes but she rarely used it and left the machine in my room so I started playing with it, making small things for dolls,’ explains Rico. From miniature couture, Rico went on to study Fashion Design and Retail at Limkokwing University in Malaysia and was awarded the Best Lifestyle Designer in 2008 followed by numerous prestigious awards including the top prize for womenswear in the Paco Rabanne XS is the New Black Fashion Couture Design award.

I meet Rico alongside Jimmy Choo at the renowned shoe designer’s couture shop in Lancaster Gate and although in the presence of a world famous designer, Rico talks confidently as stylists, photographers and models dash around in preparation for his photo shoot. He has just won a competition for young designers in Malaysia and tells me this is actually his second attempt to win the prestigious award. ‘Last year I didn’t manage to get to the finals so I tried again. The idea was to use Malaysian fabrics to create a high-end prêt-a-porter collection so it was all about mixing the traditional style with modern fashion.’
I instantly warm to this easy-going 24-year-old full of passion and drive as he talks me through the differences between Malaysian and British education for fashion designers. ‘As part of the award, I attended a short course in Pattern Cutting and Fitting at the London School of Fashion... it was very different to my experience at home in terms of the teaching method and the syllabus, I realised that here the teachers are very focused with a limited number of students in each class compared to the large seminars in Malaysia,’ he says.
‘In Malaysia there are so many young designers and to compete with them you have to stand out in any way that you can. It’s crucial to have your own style which people associate with your work. I like my clothes to be very clean cut and simple, I don’t like anything too fussy and that’s the identity which I give to my collections.’
Rico Rinaldi is currently finalising his collections for the Islamic Fashion Festival and Malaysia International Fashion Week, both taking place next month in Kuala Lumpur, as well as preparing for theCruise 2012 and Bridal Collections early next year.
Definitely a designer to watch, the name Rico Rinaldi is sure to find its place amongst the topcouturiers and certainly deserves to! If you’d like to find out more about Rico or make a purchase ahead of the crowds, check out his blog at or if you’re planning a visit to Malaysia, visit his workroom at 10M, Pusat Hentian Kajang, Phase 3, off Jalan Bangi, 43000, Kajang, Selangor.

(Pictured above: Rico Rinaldi with model Lilly Douse in his clothes, hair by Mattia Bonora, make-up byPenny Grimley and photography by Latiff Napoleon-Johari. Above left in front of Jimmy Choo's couture store in Lancaster Gate.)

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