Kering Parsons ‘Empowering Imagination’ competition winners

Kering and Parsons School of Fashion for 5th “Empowering Imagination” contest.

Ya Jun Lin & Tiffany Huang Kering and Parsons School of Design winners of the fifth Empowering Imagination  fashion design competition

For the fifth year in a row, Kering luxury group, the French luxury goods holding company owner of Alexander McQueen, Balenciaga, Brioni, Gucci, Puma, Volcom, Saint Laurent and other high-end brands,  and Parsons School of Fashion rolled out the ‘Empowering Imagination’ design competition. The competition engaged twelve talented 2016 graduates of the Parsons BFA Fashion Design program who were selected for their excellence in vision, acute awareness in design identity, and mastery of technical competencies.

The finalists were invited to present their thesis 3D collection and portfolio in the areas of Womenswear, Menswear and Accessories to a panel of fashion insiders including Altuzarra Founder and Creative Director Joseph Altuzarra, CFDA President and CEO Steven Kolb, Management Artists President and fashion talent agent Massimiliano Di Battista, Vogue Runway Director Nicole Phelps, Saks Fifth Avenue’s SVP Fashion Director Roopal Patel, Stylist Mel Ottenberg, and Head of Kering America’s Laurent Claquin. The panel selected two winners based on the conceptual vision and creativity of their thesis collections, as well as their technical skills and ability to communicate the unique point of view behind the collection.

Ya Jun Lin -White Noise 2016 collection Ya Jun Lin - portrait of Kering and The New School fifth ‘Empowering Imagination’ competition winner

Ya Jun Lin’s “White Noise” collection was inspired by signal waves and white noise as her computer crashed while she was researching images. She found it really interesting that signal waves bring all the images to the screen by transmitting with wire. This influenced her to design different fabric manipulations to visualize this concept.

Tiffany Huang Looking Down - Walking Through collection Tiffany Huang-

Tiffany Huang’s “Looking Down/Walking Through” collection is about the experience of looking at a city from an aerial perspective versus the physical experience of walking through one. She developed prints and embroideries that show aerial perspectives of the city, and to create the experience of physically walking through the space, she trapped little pieces of trash in her garments and used lines to indicate the feeling of space. She developed her own draping technique, where the geometric shapes that represent space and irregular panels of the aerial view translate the experience.

The winners will be given the opportunity to experience a 2-week trip to Kering facilities in Italy in June 2016. They will visit Kering’s Materials Innovation Lab, which houses more than 2,000 sustainable fabric options available for use to all Kering brands, and many other brand locations in Milan, Vicenza, and Florence.

Before the trip, the winning designers’ thesis collections are exclusively featured in Saks Fifth Avenue New York’s windows from May 27th to June 10th, 2016.

Additionally, the twelve finalists were granted invaluable visibility on and will be hosted for a mentoring session with editors.

“Parsons’ students have, once again, exceeded our expectations during this year’s “Empowering Imagination” contest. Ya Jun Lin and Tiffany Huang exhibit considerable talent. Their creative design and craftsmanship qualities are very important at Kering. We are happy to offer them a fantastic learning expedition at a number of Kering facilities in Europe,” said Laurent Claquin, head of Kering Americas.

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