This year’s Centrestage Elites 2018, held in Hong Kong, showcased three upcoming Asian design brands – Ms Min, FACETASM and IDISM – which have gained international acclaim for pushing traditional cultural boundaries with their creations.

From tinkering with traditional styles to turning the spotlight on quirky streetwear, the brands – led by two individuals and a duo – are just establishing their reputations.

We met these thought-provoking designers before their shows at September’s event, organised by the Hong Kong Trade and Development Council, to discuss their collections and views on fashion.

Ms Min (China)

After a collaboration with the cosmetic brand, MAC, and with a steady stream of celebrity clients knocking on her door to wear her designs, designer Min Liu, is definitely taking her interpretation of chinoiserie to the masses with her Ms Min creations.

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The London College of Fashion graduate, who launched her own label in 2010, says: “This debut collection show [in Hong Kong] was really inspired by Chinese traditional costumes.

“Colours are not easy to put together because it feels loud.

“But I feel the Chinese have a way of layering colours together and still being quiet and elegant.”

FACETASM (Japan)

Hiromichi Ochiai’s first foray into Hong Kong’s Centrestage Elites is definitely one of the highlights of the show.

The Tokyo-born designer is one of the “cool kids” giving street style a distinctive new vibe by injecting textures and colours found in the Japanese capital’s hippest fashion spots.

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Ochiai also deftly plays with trompe-l’oeil (literally “deceives the eye”) layering that brings the wow factor to the catwalk.

“[For my collection] I took inspiration from my teenage years, using my feelings about fashion then and mixing [those ideas] with what I feel about fashion as a designer today,” he says.

IDISM (Hong Kong)

“Hong Kong was a very small fishing village that transformed into a global financial centre,” says Julio Ng, one half of the design duo known as IDISM.

“The transformation represents that energy and we want that transformation to really communicate with the person wearing our garments.”

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He and co-partner Cyrus Wong were named “The future of Asia” by YOHO!, the Chinese streetwear e-commerce platform, and were featured among Vogue fashion magazine’s Vogue Talents in 2017.

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Video by Bridgette Hall.

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