Don’t miss what’s next.
Don’t miss what’s next. Get ready for
the next leap

Kim, Kaan, Roel, Yohan, Claudio, Fernando, Masaharu.
Stories yet to be written, waiting to be read

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chapter 01
If you don't face your problems,
they'll follow you wherever you go.
Claudio
chapter 02
I studied fashion,
now I'm trying to change it.
Kim
chapter 03
So I decided to
give my city a chance.
Kaan
chapter 04
Be prepared to sacrifice
everything for happiness.
Fernando
chapter 05
I overcame my fears through my aspirations.
Hyoungtae Yohan
chapter 06
If you want to follow
your passion, make it your job.
Nicoletta
chapter 07
The best day to get
started on something is yesterday.
Roel
chapter 08
Work smart to work less.
Masaharu
chapter 09
I have overcome difficulties by pushing myself even harder.
Ibby
chapter 010
available from 07/23/2018
Jakub
I studied fashion.
Now I'm trying
to change it.
a story by Kim Hou
Kim Hou

Going against the advice of her teachers, colleagues and friends, Kim dared to question the fashion system, creating "About a Worker", a brand that values the creative talent of fashion industry workers, allowing them to design and make their own collection. Today, having finished her studies in the Netherlands, she is in Paris, continuing work on her project with her friend and partner Paul Boulenger.

After an internship at a big fashion house in New York, I was meant to go back to Eindhoven to finish my studies in Fashion Design. It was then that I realised I could not continue down that path.

Design, which has always been my focus, has the power to solve real problems by creating objects with a purpose, but when you enter the world of fashion you have to deal with all its contradictions.

That's why I founded About a Worker, a brand that allows textile industry workers to express their point of view on this reality through the clothes they design and produce.

These workers are the artisans of the twenty-first century. They have done the same job for years, mastering the techniques to perfection.

Yet somehow they are never involved in the creative process.

I am convinced that the fruits of their labour can form a bridge between the cultural elite and the workforce, opening up a discussion and creating new production systems that are finally in line with the times.

I believed, and I still believe, that China is the country in which my project can have the greatest impact.

My friends, colleagues and teachers, however, tried to dampen my enthusiasm from the very beginning.

They said it would never work, that I would run into cultural barriers and resistance to change.

In New York, I found the perfect climate to let my project blossom, thanks mainly to the support and contacts offered by some of my friends, who are definitely more business-minded than me.

I pushed my university to let me start a six-month pilot project and create my first collection, which is also my degree thesis.

Before looking for an industry to approach, I developed a project methodology that could bring workers closer to the world of design and its practices.

The first four people who I worked with in France had the talent but not the tools to manage the creative process from first concepts through to the final collection. I didn't want to follow a classic methodology, and I insisted that the inspiration for the collection came from their personal experience and not, as is often the case, from a random flash of insight. Now they are aware of their own potential, and some of them may continue down this path, perhaps even founding their own brands.

The creations of these workers are now the face of the project all over the world.

They are the key players behind the Kickstarter campaign I launched to take our first steps towards production, and it was their clothes on the catwalk at Dutch Fashion Week; all the teachers who didn’t believe in the brand were completely blown away.

Things get more complicated day by day, and the challenges are constantly mounting up.

Between production and the commercial elements, I find myself faced with problems that are anything but creative, which I never would have thought of. We are receiving a lot of attention but very little funding, which is why I think we need more time and experience. For the moment, I'm happy with how my partner Paul and I have managed to stay true to our identity in spite of the adversities of the market. As we grow, we will find the courage and funds we need to involve larger businesses and expand the scope of our project.

I am convinced that fashion will undergo a radical transformation in the next two or three years. It will be experiences that matter and, above all, people.

Some day, I would like to know what Anna Wintour thinks of our project. I hope that About a Worker will soon evolve from a fashion brand into an open platform for young people's talent, creating a positive impact on the whole industry and the lives of those who work in it.

This project has given me something meaningful to believe in and to keep working towards.

I grew up between France and China, so for me it represents an opportunity to put my ability to connect cultures and situations that can seem incredibly distant into practice.

This is my chance to share a message that I can be proud of through the aesthetic value of my creations.
Next story
Kaan
So I decided to
give my city a chance.
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