Sarawakian fashion designer Edric Ong to debut Iban textiles at London Fashion Week

Sarawakian fashion designer Edric Ong to debut Iban textiles at London Fashion Week

Over in London this Malaysia Day, a Sarawak fashion designer gets to show off his unique collection of Iban textiles

SARAWAKIAN fashion designer Edric Ong is set to debut a 14-piece collection at London Fashion Week on Malaysia Day. His collection will feature a series of unique Iban textiles, the first time such designs have appeared on the London runway.

Ong is most renowned for his stylistic works and traditional aesthetics, combining them to create time-honoured pieces. He has often worked with Iban weavers in his hometown for his collections, evoking a sense of devotion to the place he grew up.

Ong’s LFW Spring Summer 2023 collection for Fashion London includes unique textiles that reflect the handwoven techniques of Iban women weavers. These fabrics are namely the ‘Pua Kumbu’, ‘Pua Sungkit’, ‘Pua Pilih’, and ‘Pua Karap’, combined with hand-spun silk and knitted hemps.

For the show, Ong shared that a fellow Sarawakian is his muse for the show, referencing to Paris Lai, a model who he has been working with since she was 16 years old.

Prior to the London Fashion Week, Ong featured his Iban textiles at the Prince of Wales Gallery, as well as The Brunei Gallery at SOAS University of London. Outside of England, his appearances reach as far as international shows in Japan, Korea, Milan, and Los Angeles.

Ong expressed his excitement to be invited by the LFW organisers for his first feature in the fashion show in an interview with the Borneo Post.

“This is the first time I am showing at LFW and I’m very proud to be an invited designer by the organisers.”

Ong added that presenting his showcase at an event as prestigious as the London Fashion Week creates an opportunity to promote Iban textiles. The show would also highlight the skillsets of the craft artists who made his accessories, such as the beaded necklaces and the rattan ‘topi tunjang’ hats.

For his works, he expressed gratitude to the women weavers of Rumah Garie longhouse for the intricate materials. He also thanked his fellow artists, Juliana Embrose and Abot Gudang, for providing the accessories.

To commemorate Ong’s showstopping skills, he was rewarded with the Designer of the Year 2009 Award at the Mercedes Benz STYLO Fashion Week held in Kuala Lumpur.

– The Vibes, September 15, 2022

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