Sunday, December 2, 2012

TORGO: Exclusive Interview

By Eva Fydrych

Conquering the world through fashion

Asian Couture Evening 2012 Singapore (Photo courtesy of Fide Fashion Weeks)

As most of our readers know, one of the main aims of Fashion Studio Magazine is to build a bridge connecting East and West ("Toronto-London-Singapore") and showcase Asian fashion to the rest of the world.

In the recent years, Asia has become a huge trends hub and an incubator of new ideas, and its potential is still growing. With so many talented designers, amazing cultural heritage and fast developing technology, it is only a matter of time when all eyes will be set on the Asian continent.

Far East is becoming a real source of inspiration for the rest of the world and is constantly proving that it can be much more then just a follower and consumer of fashion. Asian designers can be leaders and trendsetters as their potential and source of creativity is unlimited.

That is why we were really delighted at the opportunity of interviewing Bold Ochirjantsan, a Mongolian fashion designer behind the luxury label Torgo, and finding out more about his fascinating world.

Bold Ochirjantsan (Torgo)

Occupation: Fashion Designer
City: Ulan Bator, Mongolia

Designer Bold Ochirjanstan (Photo courtesy of Fide Fashion Weeks)

FASHION STUDIO: What was the factor that drew you into the world of fashion?

BOLD: It is interesting as there is no specific factor that drew me into the world of fashion. I was always interested in fashion for as long as I can remember. I was actually sketching my own designs and sewing my own clothing since secondary school. And that was the beginning of my great journey in the fashion world.

FASHION STUDIO: How did Torgo Fashion begin?

BOLD: Torgo Co.Ltd initially started its operation back in 2000, just in a very small room selling Mongolian traditional material - Torgo. Eventually it started expanding its business into fashion. It is currently one of the leading fashion companies in Mongolia.

FASHION STUDIO: Could you tell us what “Torgo” stands for?

BOLD: Torgo is actually Mongolian traditional material used for our traditional clothing called Deeli. It is a beautiful material that really means luxury, elegance, high class in the minds of the Mongolian people. 

Photo courtesy of Torgo

FASHION STUDIO: What was your first collection like?

BOLD: My first collection named Torgo Show was performed in Irkutsk nine years ago, and presented many different types and styles of clothing. It definitely spurred much excitement, anxiety and sense of pride as my collection went abroad without ever performing it in Mongolia first.

FASHION STUDIO: What kind of feedback did you get from your first presentation?

BOLD: The feedback was very positive, expressing that my collection had so much potential and future. It definitely encouraged me a lot as I was quite an amateur in the fashion world. Another great feedback for me was that there was so much interest in the Mongolian clothing, designs and moreover in Mongolia overall after my presentation.

FASHION STUDIO: What is the main challenge of your job as a designer?

BOLD: I think that being a Mongolian designer, especially Torgo designer is very challenging as I try to take traditional, historic designs of the Great Mongol nation and emerge it with the modern designs. It takes so much time and perseverance to research the fashion of the past. And the challenge comes in creating designs that are innovative and modern but still have that historic and traditional touch.

Photo courtesy of Torgo

FASHION STUDIO: Where do you find inspiration for your work?

BOLD: Well, as you know, Mongolia had conquered the world back in the 13th century. But back then you conquered the world through warfare. Nowadays, you can conquer the world differently. What expires me to work is the belief and faith that Mongolia can conquer the world again, but through fashion.

FASHION STUDIO: Which of your designs was most time consuming?

BOLD: My latest design Haute Couture 2013 was the most time consuming. The reason is that it took so much time for me to research the historic fashion of Mongolia, research of the modern Haute Couture and trying to incorporate those together into something very innovative, beautiful, glamorous yet still holding into the past tradition of Mongolia. It also took much time in the detailing of the clothing.

FASHION STUDIO: How would you describe Mongolian fashion?

BOLD: Mongolian fashion, I believe, is very artistic, bold yet very elegant. What makes the Mongolian fashion so special is that there is so much history behind it. The Mongolian fashion really tells the history, expresses our beliefs and gratifies our beautiful nature.

Colourful Mongolian fashion (Photos courtesy of Zimbio and China Daily)

FASHION STUDIO: You studied and researched apparel worn by different tribes in Mongolia. Could you tell us more about this project? What was the most interesting clothing that you encountered?

BOLD: There are over 20 different types of tribes in Mongolia, each tribe with its own unique fashion sense. And again, there is so much history behind every design. Most of much research really focuses on the 13th - 14th century and it is just so inspiring and fascinating to learn the history of my country through fashion.

FASHION STUDIO: How would you describe modern street fashion in Ulan Bator? Which trends are popular at the moment?

BOLD: That is a very interesting question. When you go to Mongolia, you can find all the fashion from all around the world. The Mongolians are known for being nomads. Maybe that is why they travel a lot all round the world. When they come back, they bring the fashion back into Mongolia. So when you go into the streets today, every corner has different fashion. Since it is getting cold in Mongolia, a lot of fur, cashmere and the “Deeli” are in trend, as they keep you warm, yet very stylish.

FASHION STUDIO: What is your personal definition of elegance?

BOLD: My definition of elegance is "art, rarity and value".

Photo courtesy of Fide Fashion Weeks

FASHION STUDIO: What do you think about your brand's image and the way it has been perceived by others?

BOLD: My brand's image stands in modern traditional clothing and I think that is exactly the perception that others have.

FASHION STUDIO: How would you describe your design philosophy?

BOLD: Design is art.

FASHION STUDIO: What would you like to achieve as a fashion designer? What is the ultimate goal for your brand?

BOLD: My ultimate goal is to make the Mongolian fashion known in the international arena. I want the Mongolian fashion to be the trendsetter.

FASHION STUDIO: Thank you for your time and we wish you all the best in your journey!

Photo courtesy of Torgo

Photo courtesy of Fide Fashion Weeks

Torgo presented his Haute Couture collection at Asian Couture Evening 2012 in Singapore on Tuesday, 27 November 2012. See the show highlights here.


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