Kelly Keyi Chen

I came to a realization that it’s all about acceptance, appreciation, and treasuring the existing beauty that was overlooked.
The study of wabi sabi allows me to slow down and reflect upon the true meaning of life.
I reflect this upon the clothes I design, not forcing, rather more intuitive means to form something that is one of a kind. Clothes essentially are meant to be worn, it is a medium that adorn our body. 

More obscure and literal than Western culture, the goal is to have my personal interaction with traditional yet not widely spread ideology from Asia reflect on a collective experience that speaks to shared humanity.
Ambience, attitude, intuitive and emotional action that can only be suggested rather than given definition. Words can give names to things, but they cannot embody the essence of things. Clothes, in this way, will be used as media to best concretize my interpretation of this seemingly overcomplicating concept in a more direct means.


Keyi Chen is a New York based fashion designer who integrates her philosophy of the art of acceptance and appreciation of beauty in imperfection to redefine human interaction, gratitude, and gravitation with garments.

With her background of growing up in Asia, Keyi reflected on her own culture while comparing it to the common western proletariat aesthetics practice. During her journey, Keyi was deeply inspired by the notion of “do”, the way of things, from Buddhism, Cha-do, Koh-do, and wabi sabi caters to these creative elements while rejecting the concept of artificial and sameness. Her revelation is that garments are more powerful than words:

it’s a medium to best concretize her interpretation of the embodiment of the essence of artifacts. Clothes are honest in its balance and interrelationship between nature and intuitive human experience. It’s a way for human beings to unwind from the overwhelming mundane life.

In Keyi Chen’s recent collection, she discovered the idea of in-betweenness. Vague and clear. Rational and irrational. Her ultimate goal is to have these antithesis coexist and collide into one another in the garments she creates while striking a balance that can recall what humans shared deeply and feel passionate about

Contemporary yet not temporary, unlimited by limitation, finished as if unfinished, timeless as the core aesthetic.