If there is one thing I love to do, it's to give myself projects to stay busy especially now. I arrived back from Europe on March 11 and immediately started my self-quarantine. March came and went, we were still encouraged to stay home. By April, I started to feel like I was losing it. My jobs were being cancelled, travel was restricted, "normal" living ceased to exist. I was used to being so busy and on the go. It felt strange to have time to myself.
I decided to make the most of it. My birthday was coming up in May and I knew the chances of me spending it with my family were slim to none. They are located in North Carolina and I did not want to risk my mom's health over not wanting to be by myself.
I'm not even sure how I came across this song. I was feeling bored and uninspired then the song "Shadow Interlude" by BTS Suga came on. What caught my attention were the lyrics.
"I want it all mine
I wanna be rich (rich)
I wanna be the king
I wanna go win"
I found the words relatable to my own life. Without a doubt, I tend to be extremely competitive and ambitious. I always wanted to win even as a designer. Except to me "winning" was not having a household name brand, it was me being able to afford to create my designs and being happy.
When I started my brand LNH, I started it for myself. To share my designs with other fashion enthusiasts. I never really thought my designs would sell, nor did it ever cross my mind that I would be paid by celebrities for my designs.
As naive as it may sound, I went into fashion because I loved it, not because I thought it would make me rich. It gave me space to create and express myself. And now thanks to this project a lot more people have helped me to grow my brand into something more than I could have ever hoped. The support has been overwhelming. It has encouraged me to keep designing for the sake of designing.
My birthday dress was just that. It represented the sun. It shines a light on my skills as a designer with its complexity and over the top elegance. In the past, I have always been told that my designs were impractical, too revealing, and too much. Since this dress was made for me, I made it all that and more to remind myself that I can design whatever I want and be successful. I can make a living from my designs. I can have it all.
" Please don't let me shine
Don't let me down
Don't let me fly…"
In contrast, I wanted to show that even when chasing after what seems to be an impossible dream, it is ok to be scared during the journey. Therefore I introduced that duality by designing an all-black harnessed suit. One that was burnt as if I flew too close to the sun. Another detail that touched upon this was the cutout back of the suit to show the absence of wings.
It's been too long since I have had the opportunity to have a project with this much meaning and thought behind it. I'm happy to have been inspired by this BTS song which I know many of you started following along with the process because of your love of BTS. Thank you for sharing your fandom with me, maybe I"ll even get to work with them one day. In the meantime, I hope you stay for my designs and enjoy this freebie!
The entire process is on Tiktok: @lisanhoang. I'm working on compiling the videos for you guys in one place.