Who is Onticha Sawasdee

Onticha Sawasdee is a budding up-and-coming fashion designer on the Australian market with a bright future ahead of her.

With recent attention from Vogue.com.au and Elle Australia, the fresh Fashion Design Studio graduate is set to appear in Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia’s Innovators show. Her effortlessly-cool and modern tailoring style creates beautiful designs that we can’t wait to see on the runway!

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Where did your interest in fashion begin?

My heritage and my upbringing inspired me to become a fashions designer. I was born and raised in Thailand until I moved to Australia at the age of 13. My formative years were on a farm and I used to keep my own silk worms. I would raise the worms from when they were yet to hatch, help them to grow, and then watch them produce silk. I would then assist and admire the women from the village create beautiful fabrics on their looms using the silk which I had helped create. This process was a part of our everyday routine, so it is a natural decision to choose fashion as a career path. I guess this is why I have such a great admiration for fabrics and textiles. There is no doubt this is what sparked my interest in fashion.

Tell me about the name of your self-titled label, “Onticha”

Onticha is my eponymous label, the reason why I chose to call the label “Onticha” was because it’s part of my graduate collection. I wanted this to be a very personal and enjoyable journey for something that means so much to me. Also “Onticha” sounds almost exotic and has a nice ring to it!

How would you describe your aesthetic?

The most succinct way to describe my aesthetic is a modern Australian version of “relaxed tailored street-wear”. This is done with a theme of minimalism to allow synchronicity between modernity and wearability. I use clean lines to create simplicity to further draw attention to the key elements of design. I believe that when done well, design should have one singular point of interest.

Where did you find inspiration for your latest collection?

The range was inspired by my dualistic life experience of having lived both a rustic rural setting and an urban metropolis. In turn the purpose of this range was to highlight the contrast of the natural free flowing curvature found in nature compared to rigid, angular urban architectural design. This theme of contrast was further appropriated to include an eclectic selection of fabrics which consisted both synthetic and natural fibres. These included natural cotton, linen and wool as well as plain nylon and woven synthetic plaid. Soft, gathered waists lines and cuffs were used to further represent elements of nature which were juxtaposed against tailor angular lines which represented urban architecture.

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What is your creative process in creating a collection and how do you select your materials?

My creative process can be broken into three stages. The idea of 2 dimensional research turns into the concept which is sketching and finding materials and the design which is the construction side of the process.

Design for me is about being honest to materials. When I feel drawn to use a certain fabric I like to use it in a manner which draws attention to the fabric itself by highlighting what makes it work aesthetically. Basically, I let the material speak for itself. I don’t believe in waste of fabrics so I tend to use most of the fabrics that I buy but in a more clever and innovative way.

Are there any designers you look up to or admire for what they have managed to achieve?

The designer I admire most is Cristobal Balenciaga. There is no doubt that his eye for detail and quality tailored finishes has influenced my designs. He was revolutionary since he managed to define the New Look. It is every designer’s dream for their work to create such a legacy. What I also find impressive is the longevity of his influence. Many designers both past and present are inspired by him and that’s a true testament to how his vision has shaped the fashion industry!

How has your work been received so far by the industry?

It has been received really well in my opinion! During the process of making it-I just thought I want to create the best quality of work that I can be proud of. So I was really surprised that Vogue.com.au and Elle Australia wrote a story on it! I was just being true to my aesthetic and it seems to be received well and that’s a bonus!

You are showcasing at MBFWA in the Innovators show coming up-how do you hope this will affect your career? How does it feel to be selected to show at such a prestigious event?

It goes without saying I am very excited! I also feel very grateful and honoured to be given the opportunity to display my work at such a prestigious event. Three years ago when I started the course my sole aim was to work hard and learn as much as I could. To see my own designs at a fashion show seemed like an unachievable dream so I didn’t pay much attention to that. Now I feel very proud that my efforts have earned this privilege.

Where do you see yourself and Onticha going in the future?

As I am still young, I’d like to learn more about the industry and work for a well-respected fashion company for a while. In saying that I’d like to do a made-to-order or a mini range for “Onticha” as well because I really enjoy the whole process. It will be difficult, no doubt, but that’s what’s so exciting about the future.

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One Response to “Who is Onticha Sawasdee”
  1. Avril Whyte says:

    What an intuitive and modest young designer. I love the ‘truth’ behind her designs and the way she has been able to bring her inner values to life in the area of fashion, (which can be quite heartless at times). This was a very interesting, in depth interview put together with flair and style by Lily Connors. Looking forward to reading more interviews of this type. I love Lily’s writing style.
    Avril Whyte – Oceania House – Cocos Island.