Sue Wong: Designer as Miraculous “Alchemist”

Sue Wong, the internationally renowned fashion designer, is, in reality, an “alchemist:” she turns fashion into theater, to the delight of all who view and covet her creations. Her latest fashion show of dazzling designs and majestic headdresses was a scintillating combination of high drama and masquerade, with iconoclastic performances by pop opera singer Michael Peer and HH Prince Mario Max Schaumburg-Lippe to enhance the theme of the presentation.

Her show Alchemy and Masquerade Spring 2016 opened Art Hearts Fashion/Los Angeles Fashion Week, at the Taglyan Complex on October 5th. The standing room only crowd of over a thousand devotees, enraptured by the show, leapt to their feet at its conclusion, in amazement and appreciation of her designs, and delivered a thunderous ovation for the presentation they had just witnessed. It was that amazing!

Regarding Sue Wong’s designs, all of the following apply: stunning, luxurious, alluring, glittering, and gorgeous; or, to sum up, amazing!

Erin Whitaker of ParkerWhitaker Productions said of the show: “We were thrilled to have Los Angeles icon Sue Wong open Fashion Week; her show is always full of such majestic glamour and elegance that it sets the tone for the rest of Art Hearts Fashion Week.”

Like Karl Lagerfeld, Sue Wong has a unique ability to reinvent her signature style each season, and that isn’t easy.

Just as Lagerfeld has his tweeds, Wong has her Hollywood glamour. The evening started with an introduction by actor Max Ryan (Sex and The City2). Then, Wong received two honors, one from the California State Assembly and one from HH Prince Waldemar and HH Dr. Antonia Schaumburg-Lippe. “I have met many queens in Europe because I am related to them, but you are a fashion queen,” said Prince Waldemar Schaumburg-Lippe, whose family has 1100 years of royal lineage.

In accepting the commendations, Wong, who has now received seven awards this year, said she felt “royally honored” and then added, in a light vein, “I’m getting so many awards, it seems like my career is winding down but I am happy to announce that it’s just revving up.”

And then began the show: a parade/dance of lace, chiffon, tulle, organza, and jersey, paired with embellishments such as beads, bows, sequins, and floral appliqués. 

Wong always provides accessories and headdresses (to top everything off, as it were) for her gowns. This Spring 2016 season the headdresses were even more visually stunning and elaborate than usual, if such is possible, and some were true architectural wonders. These high fashion accoutrements, which Wong employs to awaken the feminine divine, were provided by Rocky Gathercole, For The Stars Fashion House; Maritza Regalado, Atzi Designs; and Betty Long, What A Betty; and Marika Soderlund-Robison, Kicka Custom Design.

With the Wong designs, the accessories, and the headdresses, the show was simply coruscating! Indeed, it was all so exciting and overwhelming that it is difficult to pick out my favorite designs. However, I shall try; the following really got my heart pumping: 1. A gorgeous long navy strapless tulle corseted gown with gold embroidery and flyaway paneled skirt. The model wore a spiked helmet and shoulder appendage. 2. A long pink cap sleeved Jersey gown with illusion yoke and embellished bodice. 3. A white long empire cut gown with floral appliqué skirt and beaded bodice offered with an all over bow coat. Gorgeous! 4. A red abstract construction paired with a red lace diaphanous skirt and long train, along with red goggles and a red spiked headdress.

The artistically brilliant performance by Prince Mario Max Schaumburg-Lippe, which opened the fashion show, was a dance interpretation of the Phantom of the Opera. It fit in perfectly as he donned a mask and cape for the performance.

The show ended with Pop opera phenomenon Michael Peer’s heart stopping version of Phantom of the Opera. How apropos!

Sue Wong has built a global fashion brand with her timeless designs, and has recently entered another venue with the launching of her online clothing boutique and perfumery. Her signature Eau de Parfum line is new, and has been personally developed by Ms. Wong after considerable testing and research.

Sue Wong’s gowns and dresses are inspired by Old Hollywood, 1930’s Shanghai, Manhattan’s Jazz Age, and Weimar Germany. Wong artfully incorporates both mystery and glamour into her designs in order to honor the goddess in every woman. “I like to empower women through beauty because beauty is a powerful healing agent,” she says.

One can truly say, after witnessing this show, that Sue Wong’s longstanding mantra of beauty, magic, and transformation is not just alive and well, but thriving.