Meet the New Designer: Steven Tai on Earning Yohji Yamamoto’s Approval and Fitting Alicia Keys

Photo: Samir Hussein/Getty Images

After graduating from Central Saint Martins in 2011 (with internships at Stella McCartney and Viktor & Rolf under his belt), Steven Tai, 28, won the inaugural Chloé design prize at the Hyères International Festival of Fashion and Photography earlier this year. His collection, which also walked at Berlin Fashion Week in July, was inspired by book-binding techniques. He used stacks of fabric to make “pages” and pen nibs to create an electronic dress that flickered on the runway (Yohji Yamamoto, head of Hyères’s fashion jury, particularly liked this design). Despite the “nerd” treatment, as Tai refers to it, the dresses and separates look surprisingly wearable. Up next? A presentation at the Milan White Young Talent showroom during Fashion Week in September. Click through to see more from our interview with the designer and zoom in on his designs in our slideshow. Plus, see a video of the electronic dress in action.

Meet the New Designer: Steven Tai