Anna Sui’s fall 2012 collection takes you on a creative journey that is unparalleled in the world of fashion. Mixing vintage styles with her current cultural obsessions, she effortlessly makes hip and exuberant original clothes. Whether Sui’s inspiration is Victorian cowboys, Warhol superstars or Finnish textile prints, her depth of cultural knowledge is always apparent.
“When I’m interested in something, I want to know everything about it,” said Sui. “I need to know what’s behind it all. I really enjoy that process.” Her constant search for new ideas and challenges keeps her ahead of her time.
She’s the true trendsetter that stylists and editors look to for direction. The boundless energy and creative ingenuity of Sui’s runway presentations always make her shows a high point of New York Fashion Week.
Sui’s career is a classic American success story. “You have to focus on your dreams, even if they go beyond common sense. How could this young girl from the suburbs of Detroit become a success in New York? It was always that dream,” she explained.
Today, Sui has over 50 boutiques in eight countries and her collection is sold in 300 stores in over 30 countries.
Sui still has the same love of fashion that she had when she was a little girl. At age 4, she decided she would become a designer and she started to make her own clothes. While learning her craft, she mixed a very serious approach with eccentric ideas. For instance, she vowed not to wear the same outfit twice in one year. “I was completely obsessed,” she mused. “I don’t know how my parents put up with me.”
Before the end of her senior year of high school, she was accepted to Parsons the New School for Design in New York. After two years at Parsons, she styled with friend Steven Meisel and designed for several sportswear companies before launching her first collection in 1980.
Sui’s business continued to grow throughout the 1980s, and in 1991, she premiered her first runway show. The following year, she opened her first flagship store on Greene Street in Soho.
Her boutique’s vibrant mix of black Victorian furniture, purple walls, paper mche doll heads and rock ‘n’ roll posters closely reflect Sui’s personal style. This decor has been the model for all of her shops.
The late 1990s was a time of significant growth for Sui. She embarked upon a hugely successful expansion in the Far East, where she quickly established a cult following. She also launched cosmetics, fragrance, shoe and accessory licenses. Her devotion to detail is apparent in every one of her products. Her iconic makeup packaging and fragrance bottle design even become collectors’ items.
Sui is known for her commitment to the things that move her. Her devotion to rock ‘n’ roll makes her clothes perfect for music superstars. Her runway soundtrack is one of the most anticipated each season. Her love for shopping has made her an authority on the best shopping in the city. She also has a passion for interior design.
Following her own inspiration, Sui continues to inspire folks. She is living her dream.