Vietnamese ao dai travels the world
Models wear ao dai designs in the collection Royal by Vo Viet Chung - PHOTOS: COURTESY OF VO VIET CHUNG
With dozens of prestigious awards, including the latest “Designer of the Year” and “Best International Designer” presented by the Fashion Forward (USA) to recognize his contributions to the community and the world fashion industry over the years, Vo Viet Chung has had greater courage, determination and inspiration to create more beautiful ao dai (Vietnamese long dress) and promoting the traditional Vietnamese garment globally.
Ao dai is dressed by Vietnamese women as a symbol of national beauty and pride. Chung has been attached to the national costume for years, but the traditional dress still gives him a lot of inspiration. “For me, the beauty of ao dai is something eternal and mysterious which I cannot fully discover in my life,” said Chung.
Chung’s designs are rich in Oriental poetry thanks to the recovery and use of traditional material. Certainly, this direction has been bringing success to him.
Vietnamese fashion designer Vo Viet Chung
Recently, Chung has had a chance to design an ao dai for the National Assembly chairwoman, Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan. This is an honor but also a pressure for Chung. According to the designer, designing the national dress for Ngan is not just a matter of fashion. The material and style of her ao dai should not only bring elegance but also fit the circumstances and events where she appears and works. Therefore, it needs Chung’s particular attention and diligent care so as to honor the beauty of the wearer.
Besides the sophistication in tailoring techniques, the variety of designs and the choice of material also require effort, skills and creativity to create an ao dai that fits the personal traits of the chairwoman.
In the early 1990s, Chung was a student of the Department of Business Administration at the University of Economics in HCMC. In the morning, he learned to paint and in the afternoon studied apparel. Only a few years later, he entered the fashion industry, starting as an assistant at a famous tailor’s shop in Saigon. From there, he has gradually developed a fashion style of his own.
Over the past 26 years in the field of design, he has won dozens of world-class awards for himself and the Vietnamese fashion industry as a whole.
In 2007, he was honored by the UNESCO for his restoration and use of Lanh My A, a special type of silk in southern Vietnam, to make ao dai. This could be considered a great revolution of the fashion industry in Vietnam, as Chung successfully restored a fabric that had almost sunk into oblivion.
Chung is also the first Vietnamese designer to be selected for interview and introduction of his collections on Fashion TV channel, a famous TV channel specializing in world fashion.
“My personal identity is reflected on every outfit and I believe it is not mixed up. However, I still have to learn and follow the world trends to improve my designs. All the costumes and accessories in the winning Royal collection which was unveiled in the U.S. in August 2016 are handcrafted in the spirit of the strict standards of haute couture which designers in the world must adhere to,” Chung said. “Above all, I always emphasize the absolute perfection of my work. That is why every collection must be made with all my efforts and must be perfect in every detail.”
Traditional elements and cultural backgrounds are the basis for Chung’s creativity. It was deeply ingrained and fully exploited and improved through high designs. Another special feature is personal identity. “I am proud that on March 27 I did a lot to get recognized on March 28 and tomorrow I will do more to further elevate the position to a higher level.”
In May 2014, Vo Viet Chung organized the Miss Ocean Vietnam Contest and has since been the founder and organizer of the annual contest. The meaning of the competition is to promote the protection of the marine environment.