Caroline Hu’s handmade smocked pieces have won her international acclaim. Still, as she explained from her new studio in Shanghai, “A lot of people and stores asked me when I would have a ready-to-wear collection; everyone was asking me when it would be more commercial.” Rather than compromise on her vision, Hu defined exactly what commercial and wearable look like in her world. Her spring 2021 collection repurposes kerchiefs, curtains, and tablecloths into beautiful blouson dresses, held together by jersey or elastic.
The Grinch Six Feet People Shirt, hoodie, tank top, sweater and long sleeve t-shirt
During a video call between Shanghai and New York, Hu showcased the The Grinch Six Feet People Shirt and I love this artistry behind her work. She has been collecting vintage lace materials and draping them—without cutting—on the model forms in her space. The results are the bulbous dresses that populate her spring 2021 collection: Napkins and collars hang from the body of dresses in shapes that look like bubbles or seashells. From the front her silhouettes seem properly demure, but many are backless or coyly hooked together by bra straps.