“Finally a really rocking edgy Chinese street tailoring brand that looks set to have a major future. It is called Pronounce,” once wrote fashion critic Godfrey Deeny in his review.
Street Tailoring - yes, that’s right. You may ask why this play on words. Well, Pronounce was founded in 2016 by Yushan Li and Istituto Marangoni Milano Alumnus Jun Zhou as a menswear brand bridging the aesthetic divide between East and West. It applies traditional manual skills to the modern fashion design language. It also talks about the “gender sharing” concept to a gender-fluid generation by breaking down female and male stereotypes and pushing boundaries to a higher level.
Curious to discover 5 fun facts about the brand and its founders? There you go!
- Right after completing his Master’s Course, Yushan Li flew from London to Los Angeles: he was se-lected by Kanye West’s fashion label Yeezy. This experience enabled him to soak in the brand’s team-working spirit and spontaneous vibes in a Californian lifestyle.
- Forbes selected both founders for the famous “Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia” list: Li Yushan in the Art and Style category in 2017 and his team-mate Jun Zhou in 2019 for The Arts section.
- In 2018, Pronounce was screened by the British Fashion Council experts’ group and won a valuable seat in the official schedule conference during London Fashion Week.
- Pronounce was the first Chinese brand to host a runway at Pitti Uomo in Florence in 2019, during the edition that celebrated China as a “Guest Nation”. Both founders had already had an opportunity to make themselves known in Florence by winning the Latest Fashion Buzz award at Pitti Uomo in 2017: their collection kept its coolness without sacrificing the brand’s hallmark tailoring.
- Last but not least, the duo is now collaborating with Istituto Marangoni Shanghai for an exclusive mentorship. While teaching fashion design, they will deliver masterclasses to students attending design, styling and business undergraduate progression programmes. They will also support the fashion show creative direction project for FS and FB students. Istituto Marangoni does not sound new to Jun Zhou: the co-founder joined a Manswear Master’s Course at the Milano Fashion School in 2013. From Alumnus to Mentor, it’s a short step!