Born and raised in China, Yuner Shao came to America when she was 16 years old and attended Parsons School of Design for her bachelor’s degree. Now 22, she resides in New York City. When Shao was younger, she saw how her father loved styling his clothes. “He gave me so much inspiration when I was young,” Shao said. She watched a lot of TV too, the sumptuous costumes from Chinese historical dramas stood out the most. Her favourite designer is Provenza Schouler.

The first thing Shao learned was the deconstruction of a garment. “It was a class project, we bought second-hand garments from the store and started draping it on the mannequin. That was the first piece of clothing I made in my life.”

Although Shao is not a good sewer, she enjoys the design process and gets a sense of achievement every time she turns her inspiration into final products. Working with manufacturers, Shao always checks each step with them from the beginning. With her small team, she is the designer and production coordinator. YUNER SHAO started in 2017 and is looking to be stocked in retail stores now. “I’m always thinking about fashion brands with different systems. It is an interesting industry, but needs a revolution to change the ways to go to the market,” she explained. “I think social media is a very important way to promote a brand.”

After some research, Shao decided to showcase her designs at Vancouver Fashion Week. “I looked at some designers’ runway shows from previous seasons. I feel it is an exciting opportunity for young designers.” Vancouver Fashion Week’s Fall/Winter 2018 season is Shao’s first-time participating at VFW and is looking forward to showing her new collection and building more opportunities with other designers. “Fashion week is the most direct way to present designer’s work to the general public. I’m hoping to gain experiences and build more connections from VFW,” Shao said. “Since most designers’ style nowadays is minimalism, my collection focused on prints and graphics which will bring lots of colours.”