is the vision of Thao Vu…
Designer, artist and eco-entrepreneur, Thao is a leader among the pioneering group of young designers who have made Hanoi an emerging creative hub of the fashion world.
Thao experimenting with natural dyes in her home studio – Photo by Julie Vola
Harper’s Bazaar observes that Thao’s clothes for women and men are “equal parts statement pieces and great basics” at the youthful forward edge of fashion.
Her versatile garments can be worn in a variety of ways for daytime and evening, work and play. And innovative details such as flexible panels, folds, hoods, detachable scarves and pleats let you wear them in different ways to suit your own individual sense of style.
Since these practical, affordable garments are made by human artisans rather than mass-produced by machines, each is like a work of art — hand-crafted, visionary, unique.
But what makes Kilomet109 unique in today’s fashion world is the story behind the garments.
Thao collaborates with several teams of local craft artisans around Vietnam to grow, spin, weave, print and naturally dye Kilomet109 fabrics. After that the garments are hand-stitched in her Hanoi design studio. This hands-on and deliberate creative process honors the principles of the “slow fashion” movement.
Thao’s vision encompasses every detail of Kilomet109’s production process, starting from the natural materials that go into the garments she designs. The entire production chain is self-contained within the craft communities themselves — using only locally sourced materials and homegrown eco-friendly dyes. This hyper-localized approach prioritizes ecological sustainability and providing material support to the artisans.
This is fashion from the ground up, and it defines a new type of ready-to-wear couture: hand-made, hand-stitched garments from a designer who works directly with local artisans on every element that goes into them. And since these practical, affordable garments are made by human artisans rather than mass-produced by machines, each is like a work of art — hand-crafted, visionary, unique.
“The value of our pieces is about more than their design,” Thao says, “it’s about the culture of the people who make them and the environmental issues that are so vital to our future.”
For more information on Thao and Kilomet109 please check this feature story from Channel News Asia.