Meeting Thai designer in London sounds impossible? Thanks internet and the London office and I finally got a chance to "talk" to one of my favourite Thailand based fashion designer, Au Ekbutr Udomphol, the brain behind an emerging brand The Only Son. I started keeping my eyes on their unisex designs since the first season I arrived London but I didn't get any chance to own their pieces (I only found some womenswear on ASOS). I am still waiting for somewhere stocking their menswear but a great news is their F/W 2012 is launching a collaboration with jewellery designer, Jordan Askill. Before I start my shopping, let Au tell you more about the collaboration and his own brand.
I moved to Sydney during my final high school years and continued my studies in design fundamentals and then fashion design.
Is there any story behind the brand name? Why “The Only Son”?
It is the translation of my Thai name Ekbutr, which could mean the first son or the only son.
How do you usually start your collection? What inspires you most?
I think about what I’m drawn to at the time, it could be photography, an artist whose work I dream of owning, a musician I couldn’t stop listening to, a film I’ve seen or re- discovered classics (by Visconti or Jorodowsky for instance). Travelling is also important.
How do you see the differences between the Australian, U.S. and Asian market after working in different cities?
The different cultural and political climate, as well as the difference in lifestyle affects the design and sizing of garments in each market.
Besides the garment collection, the jewellery is always a statement for every season. Is there any difficulty for the jewellery design comparing with designing garments?
Each season we work with new a concept, so the challenge is to remain true to the brand’s DNA, with something new to say. The jewellery line is trans-seasonal and could appeal to some to be more timeless, in comparison to the garments.
Please tell us more about the F/W 2012 collection.
The collection ‘Entablature’ was influenced by Roy Lichtenstein paintings series of the same title, the show I saw in New York last year, which displayed architectural facades and forms (originated in ancient Greece) in comic strips colours.
The laser cut and seam construction details and structure of the garments reflected on this, as well as the details on the jewellery.
How did the collaboration with Jordan Askill happen?
We’ve been good friends for a very long time and it just fell into place during Jordan’s last visit to Bangkok during his visit to my studio.
What is next for The Only Son? Are there any other collaborations coming soon?
We’re working on limited edition of eyewear ‘The Only Son by MOO eyewear’, a Bangkok/London based designer.
I love The Only Son's garments because they always tell a special stories through their designs. Car-racing and paperwork inspired collections with great matching jewellery pieces in previous seasons kept catching my attention in the showroom and those similar details for both male and female illustrate the androgynous mood of the brand really really well.
Actually I was super excited when I saw the Jordan Askill collaboration. I am sure many people love Jordan's sculptural pieces buy may feel they are a bit too bold. The collaboration is just as the right place for the market which doesn't want to get his second line (I wish they are not too expensive!). The ring is my favourite!!
Special Thanks to Naomi Lyon from A.I. PR
To know more about The Only Son, please visit their website
To know more about Jordan Askill, please visit his website