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Lan Yu romper suit ensemble, 2009

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New Zealand Fashion Museum

In her graduation collection Lan Yu asked
 "Who Made All The Rules?" As a young woman of Chinese heritage living in New Zealand she pondered the cultural prescription of what one should wear. Like Karen Walker in her Etiquette collection, she questioned the rules of well-mannered society: Do transparent fabrics make men look sexy? Why is it that only women wear dresses? Is there only one way 
to wear a coat? Can I wear the same clothes in China and in New Zealand? In her collection she restricted her colour palette to create garments with many options – androgynous, reversible and multi-layered. Read more about wearing the colour black in the New Zealand Fashion Museum publication Black: The history of black in fashion, society and culture in New Zealand.

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  • Text adapted with permission from Te Papa and Digital NZ

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