New Label to Love: PH5

This ain't your grandma's sweaters. Meet the designers behind the game-changing knitwear label
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New York City-based knitwear label PH5 gets a big stamp of approval from us. Founder Wei Lin and Creative Director Mijia Zhang (right) let us in on how art and science have influenced their latest collections.

What’s the creative synergy of being a duo?

PH5 is a story of art meets science, and the numerous potential that emerges when an artistic designer has direct access to high-tech knitwear machines. While Mijia comes from a design perspective, Wei ensures the designs are well executed and positioned correctly.

What's the science behind PH5? What were some of the technologies developed to create your pieces?

There’s lot of research, development, testing, coding and debugging. That’s why our garments are technically sophisticated. For our coming Fall/Winter 2017 collection, we’ve loosely needle-punched seven different colours of mohair onto wool-alpaca blended sweaters, a previously unexplored technique. A product highlight from the collection includes our reversible double-knitted sweaters, which use a Japanese metallic yarn on one side and angora cashmere blend on the other. 

The Spring/Summer 2017 collection was partly inspired by Florian and Michael Quistrebert's Palais de Tokyo show. What aspect of the exhibition caught your attention?

Their new way of layering: projecting florescent lights onto paintings. We reinterpreted it by sewing layers of transparent knits together. We were also inspired by Katharina Grosse’s brush strokes, and Carlos Cruz Diez’s work which focuses on the kinetic energy of colours. 

Who are some of your favourite artists?

James Turrell, Peter Fischli and David Weiss. 

Why do you think art has such an important influence on fashion?

Artists are often the ones that first spot trends in society and dare to voice their point of view. Fashion designers can learn a lot from their compositions, colours and material. 

How can a girl wear PH5 in Singapore heat?

PH5’s second biggest retail market is Singapore, a tropical country with no room for conventional knits. We want to challenge the conventional view of knitwear and let people know that it’s more than cosy, chunky sweaters that people wear during winter. It can be breathable, lightweight, colourful and fashion forward.



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