Mercedes-Benz Awards Emerging Chinese Design Talent
Xiao Li is one of China’s most promising design talents and her involvement in the Mercedes-Benz International Designer Exchange Program marks an exciting time for Mercedes-Benz and the London Fashion Week catwalk schedule.
An unmissable event on the international fashion calendar, Xiao Li has the honour of closing London Fashion Week this season, this accolade comes after winning the Mercedes-Benz China Designer Award 2015. Thanks to the luxury automobile manufacturer’s support and initiatives such as the International Designer Exchange Program, the London catwalks continue to lead the way for championing break through designers.
Born in the small Chinese seaside town of Qingdao, Li’s early interest and promise in drawing led her to move to London where she completed her Bachelor of Arts in Fashion Womenswear at the London College of Fashion. She moved onto a Master of Arts in Womenswear Knitwear at the Royal College of Art, graduating in 2013. Li’s innovative, sculptural knitwear pieces saw her gain early acclaim, winning the Pitti Filati ‘Feel the Yarn’ competition in 2012.
Her graduate collection won both the Loro Piana Award for Best Knitwear Collection and the International Talent Support Diesel Award. The latter prize led to her interning for six months at Diesel Headquarters and creating a seven piece capsule collection in collaboration with the brand, which was sold exclusively at 10 Corso Como. Li produces both menswear and womenswear alongside accessories and footwear collections and is stocked in Dover Street Market, Joyce Hong Kong and 10 Corso Como.
In a short time, Li has established a signature aesthetic, creating sculptural knitwear pieces from technical and unusual materials, using silicone moulded motifs to add a distinctive and modern edge alongside, developing an eye for tailoring a striking oversized silhouette. Li works with fine, luxurious Italian yarns, and produces her work in both, Europe and China, merging both continents together effortlessly in her directional yet accessible collections. From outré graduate looks, Li has developed her work for market, and her Autumn /Winter 2016 collection will mark a progression into an enhanced commercial offer, retaining her avant garde appeal.