Barcelona-based singer-songwriter, Uma (Uma Bunnag), had reached out to us to design stage-wear for her upcoming tours in Europe. Her first EP titled “Bel·li” is an expression of Uma’s deep connection to music and lyricism. It’s about feeling emotions deeply through your stomach, as well as your heart. “It is all about home and falling into great love. Late night bowls of spaghetti in your belly. Endless summers watching the sunset from my roof. Imminent tragedy and inescapable melancholy.” Although plans for a performance at soi sa:m had to be cancelled, the collection continued to grow from her music and our exchanges of ideas. The notion of “the performer” was integral to the design process. Working from initial materials Uma sent us of female Baroque artists, such as Artemisia Gentileschi and Elisabetta Sirani, we set out to capture the spirit of those paintings in the nonchalant language of SHONE PUIPIA. The opulence in color and material and the gestures in drapery were distilled into a sophisticated wardrobe of today.
Shone worked on giving an ease and flow to the clothes, built up looks through separates, and saw how they danced with the wearer. Swirls of satin and velvet move and wrap around the contours of the body. Lightweight silk dresses fall into asymmetrical cascades, folding in on itself softly at the hem. Sumptuous corduroy and silk crepe pieces are finished off with elasticated details to give that utilitarian twist. New ideas in tailoring were explored through jackets inspired by 18th-century cutaway court coats. Shone continues to craft pieces out of the signature raw mawata silk, whether as a generous blouson with a ruched neckline or boxer shorts. In this collection, hand-crafted techniques centered on the idea of knotting materials to an open structure. Ethereal fringe dresses are hand-knotted with Thai silk and rayon threads on a macramé net base. The “foliage” technique, previously explored as accessories, is further developed as a cocoon cape, constructed out of grosgrain ribbons and knotted with fabric off-cuts from the studio.
“Cloudbusting” by Kate Bush is one of our favorite songs that has uplifted us through these trying times. The song speaks about a longing yet with a sense of optimism, the cherished relationship with your loved ones and the conviction to succeed no matter the obstacles that are thrown at you. Emotions in music have touched us deeply throughout the process. Through clothing, we hope to give that same emotional connection that equally elevates our audience.
Images by Mikey Asanin