Her richly romantic design style represents a dazzling display of the handcrafting traditions, art and workmanship behind haute couture, overlaid with her own distinctively sculptural quality. Fast fashion and gimmicky consumerism don’t interest her; instead, she makes products of exceptionally high quality and luxury, giving scant regard to how this might limit her sales to a handful of élite buyers.
Designing, for Yiqing Yin, starts with the feel of the fabric. “A flat piece of cloth gives me so much freedom to create a 3D design by draping, sculpting and pleating,” she says. “It’s through molding the fabric directly onto the body that I have developed new techniques and discovered surprising new shapes, volumes and graphics. I like to preserve the freedom in not knowing what the result will be, because it’s through fortunate accidents that I come across the most unexpected discoveries.”
Yiqing Yin works in an atmosphere of Zen-like calm and efficiency – the process is almost like a meditation. The garments that evolve are one-off originals of unearthly, breathtaking beauty, featuring intricately handcrafted pleats and exquisitely sculpted details embellished with crystal. She is deeply appreciative of the support she has received throughout her career so far, chief among it SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS. Her well-established partnership with the latter has seen some extraordinarily creative use of crystals, and she will crown this relationship by fronting the new SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS 2012 advertizing campaign, which launched in February 2012 and will run through to December 2012. For this, she has created a couture jacket, which was part of her Paris couture show on January 25, 2012.
Crystal, says Yin, has brought another dimension to her creativity: “SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS are fascinating products to work with. Although crystal has a hard surface, materially, it is also an ethereal, immaterial component, with infinite possibilities for creation. You can use it on so many different fabrics and surfaces.”
Having been invited in January by the Chambre Syndicale de la Couture to unveil a guest collection at the exclusive Spring/Summer 2012 haute couture shows in Paris, her presentation was received with warm enthusiasm. She accepts her success with characteristic modesty, quietly carrying on creating works of art that are complex and dramatic, fluid and dream-like. With her extraordinary eye for line, shape and form, Yiqing Yin is having more than just a ripple effect on the Parisian couture scene.