NZFW17 Designer Showcase: Yu Mei

Yu Mei is a leather good label devoted to the creation of understated luxury leather goods. They started just over two years ago and moved the studio to Wellington last year. ‘Yu Mei’ is designer Jessie Wong’s middle name, given to her by her Chinese granddad meaning young and beautiful. Yu Mei is run by 15 team members and they produce everything in studio so the jobs vary depending on what stage of production they are in. Already stocked in 32 boutiques across New Zealand and Australia, each store is beautifully curated and Wong added that they are pretty lucky to call them all home. “Slick Willy’s in Dunedin was the first place to pick us up right when the label started,” said Wong.

At New Zealand Fashion Week, Yu Mei is showcasing their new AW18 collection that plays off the links between surrealist concepts and perception of the female form. “We’re playing with texture and silhouettes this season.”

A highlight for Fashion Week for Wong is sharing her ideas that she has been working on for months. “Last year we used our offsite presentation to give our guests an insight and touch point into the making of a Yu Mei bag, and the phrase ‘handmade’.”

This year Yu Mei is doing an installation in the tent in collaboration with Meide Studios. “We’ve got some tricks up our sleeve and it’s going to be fun.”