Meet Chinese fashion designer Angel Chen. Chosen as i-D magazine’s designer to watch in 2014, she joined Forbes China’s “30 under 30” in 2016 and the Business of Fashion 500 in 2017 and 2018. She is also a Woolmark prize finalist and the first-ever Chinese designer to collaborate with H&M. View this post on Instagram A post shared by Angel Chen (@angelchenwig) on Apr 28, 2020 at 12:07am PDT She has also presented at the fashion weeks of London, Milan and Shanghai, and recently took part in Netflix’s competition show, Next In Fashion , as the other half of the much-adored “Dragon Princess” team with South Korean designer Minju Kim . Chen has also joined Shanghai’s virtual fashion show with a smashing five-minute digital presentation. Covid-19 gave the catwalk to VR models – can humans reclaim the spotlight? Digital darling View this post on Instagram A post shared by Angel Chen (@angelchenstudio) on Apr 1, 2020 at 1:12am PDT How does one stage a fashion show in the time of coronavirus? Ask Angel Chen. With limited resources – from having models stuck in lockdown to inaccessible shoot locations – Chen and her team pulled through just in time to make Shanghai’s Digital Fashion Week last April. 5 Korean designer labels driving K-fashion’s global expansion View this post on Instagram A post shared by Angel Chen (@angelchenstudio) on Apr 3, 2020 at 1:22am PDT In a Vogue interview, Chen credited her team for taking on the challenge, as they strategised how she could best launch her collection in a digital space. The designer styled the collection herself and had to direct the shoot from a safe distance – through video call! – as she was in self-quarantine. Her virtual presentation, called “Aurora”, showed no signs of the restrictions she and her team were subject to. “The virtual show really allowed me to go all-out creatively,” Chen told Vogue . She uploaded the full video on her brand’s Instagram. How China’s luxury sector is engaging with customers from a social distance Colour story View this post on Instagram A post shared by Angel Chen (@angelchenwig) on May 5, 2020 at 3:12am PDT Born in Shenzhen, China, to a family in the business of wall paints, Chen’s father was a colour engineer who spent much of his time in his laboratory, discovering and developing colours. “When I was growing up, I always went to his factory to check the colour,” the designer shared in Next in Fashion . “I’m basically born in colour. Colour is kind of like my DNA.” Chen reveals in an interview with Refinery29 what inspired her to become a designer. Seeing John Galliano’s 2007 couture collection “Madame Butterfly” in a Vogue issue – a collection that was heavily Asian, with kimono-esque silhouettes, origami-inspired structures and models with Geisha make-up on – Chen was left in awe and immediately decided to attend the same fashion school as Galliano. “It’s at Central Saint Martins that I think I found out who I [was], and discovered my own way of creating,” Chen explained in the interview. Her graduation collection, called “Les Noces”, breathed life into a story of two girls getting married in a forest wedding in Africa, in a ceremony that is full of “laughter, texture and colour.” How Korean designer Minju Kim won Netflix’s Next in Fashion Fashion forward View this post on Instagram A post shared by Angel Chen (@angelchenwig) on Jan 12, 2020 at 7:04am PST Since launching her brand, Chen’s work always includes two things: a merging of the Western and Eastern aesthetic and a design story that always takes reference from her country of origin, be it from Chinese literature, an opera or a song, or from centuries-old symbols and traditions. View this post on Instagram A post shared by Angel Chen (@angelchenwig) on Feb 24, 2020 at 9:14am PST While imaginative interpretations of her Chinese heritage have made her countrymen more aware and proud of their own culture, Chen also recognises how China is being perceived, especially in the fashion world: “China is a country traditionally known for mass production at low quality,” she told Refinery29. “And I really aim to change this idea and to purvey that, alongside products for the masses, we can also offer good design and a beautiful culture.” Well-stocked in more than 70 international locations, we can’t see why not. Chen’s meticulous craftsmanship, bold colour choices and edgy take on everyday style are a testament to how fashion can inspire and transcend culture, geographic boundaries and global crises. Want more stories like this? Sign up here . Follow STYLE on Facebook , Instagram , YouTube and Twitter . Help us understand what you are interested in so that we can improve SCMP and provide a better experience for you. We would like to invite you to take this five-minute survey on how you engage with SCMP and the news.