李隽Li Jun, was born in Shanghai in 1991. He is a fashion designer, professional hip-hop dancer and founder of his brand “JUNLI” for which he explains that “improving a brand is a long process, and I am still on my path of observation and exploration.”
Founded in 2014, JUNLI was the first Chinese designer fully sponsored by Milan Men’s Fashion Week. During his six years in Europe, his brand participated in both London Fashion Week and Milan Fashion Week.
In 2019, he returned to China and participated in Shanghai Fashion Week on a recurring basis. In addition to being a fashion designer, 李隽Li Jun also participated in a variety TV show “Where are the trendsetters?” in 2020. Through this show, a wide audience discovered that JUNLI is not only able to draw and dance, but also has a striking resemblance to “Jackson Yee” (famous Chinese actor)! He is now a very popular designer, renowned for his talent is an alumnus of IFA Paris. Indeed, from 2009 to 2012, 李隽Li Jun studied his Bachelor Fashion Design & Tech. at IFA Paris on the Shanghai campus.
Collections and collaborations
After studying womenswear design with French instructors at IFA Paris on the Shanghai campus for three years, 李隽Li Jun went to the United Kingdom in 2012, to continue his menswear design studies, specifically at the London College of Fashion.
Since 2014, 李隽Li Jun has maintained a very prolific output of two collections a year. The hard work is paying off as in 2016, VOGUE ITALIA presented the 2016AW collection by JUNLI.
In June 2016, 李隽Li Jun became the first Chinese designer to be fully sponsored to participate in Milan Men’s Fashion Week. In the same year, Highsnobiet magazine ranked his brand as one of the “top 7 designer brands to be highlighted in the world”.
After returning to China in 2019, 李隽Li Jun has successfully juggled business in both Europe and China. He still likes to make things simple and flawless and continues to make efforts to find his own design language without simply following the latest trends.
“Maybe at first your design language is not very mature, but it’s the persistence day after day, year after year, that eventually shapes your own design style in the process of continuous optimization and progression and that’s what makes people still remember you after 10 or even 20 years.” “It takes time to understand a brand, and I hope more and more consumers will understand the essence of JUNLI.”
In this industry that is fashion there is more and more competitiveness, celebrity collaborations, interviews and features are effective ways to increase brand exposure to reach a wider group of people who will then see and understand “JUNLI.”
In addition to celebrity collaborations, 李隽Li Jun has self-taught experience in film making. Inspired by the story of “Twin Peaks “*, 李隽Li Jun made the story outline, screenplay and storyboard of the fashion film JUNLI 2022SS. He believes that the fashion film is able to best express what the clothes want to convey.
“Since my design has always been introverted, it’s hard for people to understand the idea behind it just by watching a 2D presentation. Fashion film is a great way to help express the inspirations through the designers’ screening process and ultimately tell the stories behind it.”
At home and abroad
We assume that many students planning to study at IFA Paris Fashion School are very excited after hearing this alumnus’ story. So let’s learn more about some of his views and thoughts. As a brand founder, 李隽Li Jun has moved back and forth between China and abroad.
We asked him how he would assess the development of the market from home?
“First of all, I think the most exciting thing is that consumers really dare to dress with originality. I used to think that foreign consumers had more individual ideas, but now it seems that young people in the country have a more receptive mind. They are willing to wear items in their daily lives that even I wouldn’t have thought I could wear on a daily basis.”
“People are starting to know and appreciate the national designers they prefer, and in fact, what they are interested in is not whether it’s national or not, but choosing the ones they really like.”
In addition, the rapid rise of Chinese stores has also greatly impressed 李隽Li Jun. “I quite often find amazing or interesting stores popping up all of a sudden, which is almost impossible in Europe because Europe as a whole has a slow pace. But in China, sometimes it only takes a few months to start a store or work on a project.”
“So I think coming back to China is quite useful for most designers, including me. I think this market is helping us grow, which is really a bonus in this day and age, and that won’t happen again at any other time or anywhere else.”
After hearing the insights shared by our alum, we believe that the students working hard now are the next generation of designers who will one day present their designs to the world!