By NASA MARIA ENTABAN
Pictures by SHAARI CHEMAT
IF you were born after the year 1928, you probably grew up with Mickey Mouse, the lovable cartoon character created by Walt Disney.
It’s been 83 years and Mickey and friends are still popular among many people.
At last week’s Malaysia International Fashion Week (MIFW) in Kuala Lumpur, nine young designers were tasked with incorporating Mickey and other Disney characters into their designs at the “Mickey and Friends” show, held one Saturday morning in the city.
Sitting there watching models walk by on the runway definitely brought back memories for most people in the audience – from Mickey and Minnie-inpired designs to outfits that look like they came straight out of Disney movies like The Lion King, there were designs everyone could relate to on some level.
The nine designers that presented their creations were Andy Yap, Aisya Hanem, Jason Yek, Jimmy Lim, Satheswaran, Michelle Shia, Marcus June, Alex Yap and Lucas Blim – all familiar names that have graced fashion events in the past.
When the models walked out onto the runway in floor-sweeping princess gowns I could hardly breathe. The full-skirted gowns were feminine with intricate detailing and just looked like the sort of thing Beauty and Cinderella would wear to the ball in the movies.
The massive sleeves, long trains and floral applique added to the fairytale feel of the show, and tiaras on the models’ heads completed the look.
Even without the African jungle soundtrack playing as the models walked the runway, it was obvious where this designer got his inspiration from – The Lion King.
Faux fur and serrated hemlines were a dead giveaway, as were the drawings of Simba, Nala and other characters from the movie on each outfit.
The extreme temperature where the film is set, Africa, is symbolised in each piece through the colours like yellow, orange, brown and dull green.
One of last year’s breakout stars at MIFW, Aisya used Ariel from The Little Mermaid as her inspiration.
The designer is a big fan of the red-haired, fun-loving mermaid and this showed in her designs, without being too obvious – there were no sea shells or fins to be seen on any of the creations.
Some layers were crafted to look like scales while dark green skirts hung loosely to mirror ocean vegetation, all this was achieved without losing the glamour, but still retaining the fun element of Ariel.
The whimsical collection inspired by Mickey and Minnie was complete with Mickey Mouse ears and hands, and the designer really went all out to make the models look like they walked right out of the cartoon and onto the runway.
Using “Mickey colours” (black, white, red and yellow), as well as black dots on white backgrounds, Andy’s collection was casual but chic at the same time. It looked like something any one of us could throw on and walk out into the street in, with the exception of the thick maroon faux fur coat.
This fashion design lecturer worked with the idea that Mickey and his friends are real, and that he lives among us, and that was the theme for his creations.
Using mainly dull greys, browns and greens, each piece was brought to life with bursts of bright colours and ripped hemlines – sort of like what a punk, or edgy fashionista Mickey would wear if he were real.