By KUPLUTHAI PUNGKANON
TWELVE YEARS after Disaya Sorakraikitikul was hailed as a rising star in fashion design with the debut of her Boudoir by Disaya lingerie at Elle Fashion Week, she’s at the peak of her game. The name actually means “good luck”, but she’s got ample talent to back up her claim to fame. She was, after all, educated at Central St Martins in England and trained by John Galliano.
The Boudoir line soon blossomed into the Disaya brand of ready-to-wear clothes and costume jewellery, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year.
“The Disaya woman is a dreamy girl,” she says, “but she’s grown in confidence and experience and knows her lifestyle well, matching the brand’s ‘lavish and youthful’ aesthetic. In part the line today reflects how both I and the company, which my husband Danai operates, have developed, overcoming all the difficulties of building a brand quite literally from scratch.”
The “lavish” aspect of Disaya clothes is clear enough in the choice of fabrics from Italy, France and Spain, and the “youthful” part has certainly never grown old. It’s still flirty in design, with quirky prints and more eye-catching features, wild enough to attract the likes of Jennifer Lopez, Kelly Osbourne and other stars.
Disaya’s proudest moment thus far in her career was seeing Amy Winehouse wearing her cream and red polka-dot chiffon dress on the cover of the “Back to Black” album that ultimately sold more than three million copies. Following the English singer’s death in 2011, the Amy Winehouse Foundation auctioned off that dress for more than 40,000 pounds (Bt2.2 million) to a fashion museum in Santiago, Chile.
“The money was used to help young people battling drugs, so that’s something I’m really proud of,” says Disaya. She shares full credit with her “team”.
“Passion gives me the ability to put my full effort into this, because it’s something I love, and my team makes sure I can see everything clearly as we move forward together in the same direction, in terms of how we want the Disaya woman to look in the future. We often brainstorm and, if they have good ideas that work, I listen. I think this is the strength of the brand.”
As Disaya marks its 10th anniversary, the “young girl” has grown up a little and forged a broader perspective. A maturing lifestyle and added experience have inspired wiser and more distinctive choices in style. The youth who once chased every fashion trend now has more stable ideas, though still fresh, and greater pride in her roots.
“Since Disaya means ‘good luck’, we have a new logo created in collaboration with rising design studio Dinsor that uses the universal symbol for good luck – the four-leaf clover. But actually I regard each leaf as having a different virtue – luck, faith, hope and love,” says the designer. “So we’re reintroducing ourselves with the four-leaf clover and the letters D, S and Y as initials for Disaya
The logo has been incorporated into locket that’s touted as “an amulet of memory”. The front displays the clover intertwined with the D, S and Y, with the original logo inserted – hand-written rather than in type font.
There are fresh colours for the anniversary as well, joining the brand’s famous Blush Rosette and Silver Moon. Liquid Sky, Mallard Green and Cosmic Copper are seen in the autumn-winter 2015 “Twisted Hauteur” collection inspired by the art of the French Renaissance.
Cut, trimmed and extracted, the designs are rendered to maintain only the key messages of the selected artworks. With classic interpretations motivating new shapes, the dresses have slick and slender lines and interesting volume at the thigh. The details and techniques are sharper as superfluous elements are minimised.
Greater focus has also been placed on contrasts – sequinned and embroidered vines sparkle on techno-couture fabric – yet find a wonderfully harmonious rhythm together.
Every garment appears more modernised and sophisticated thanks to the streamlined silhouettes, from the Toile de Jouy colour-blocked patchwork on a simple coat to the punk-rock-inspired safety pins and oversized crystal zip on a dress of sheer and metallic fabric.
And interesting feminine elements are seen in woven patterns that mimic vintage drawings, as well as in the little handcrafted details along the seams and in the textured lock stitches.