Come as you are – Fan Wang


In the past months we got in touch with several artists, long-time collaborators and young creatives to talk about their work, how they see self-expression and what the future holds. Let’s inspire each other, be our true selves and do what we love.

This time we reunite with Fan Wang, who designed eyewear at KOMONO for over five years. Fan recently took a new step in her career and is currently working on different fashion and jewellery projects. Join us to find out what exactly makes her creative tick, where she gets her inspiration from and to hear what’s next.

Pictures by Robin Joris Dullers

What are you working on right now?

I’m working on a very exciting project for the diamond industry in Antwerp. They often work with freelancers and designers from different backgrounds. A while back, I worked with them on a jewellery collection and we’ve been working together from time to time since. I feel lucky to be part of their community. This latest project is a collection of 15 pieces. We’re still in the beginning phases setting the creative direction for the project, it’s going to be really cool.

Do you do a lot of these side projects?

Whenever I have the time. I don’t take on too many side jobs. As the main designer for KOMONO and other brands, I prioritise finishing my primary work first. It’s important for me to set priorities and present the things I do in the best possible way. In the jewellery world, your reputation is everything. If you’re organised, professional, and motivated, your name will be making the rounds. I believe that having a broader skillset will also help grow your reputation. So besides being a designer, I also do 3D modeling and quality control. I like seeing the process through till the end.

What’s your end goal? Do you dream of having your own brand?

Absolutely. Actually, my dream is bigger than that. I want to have my own brand, but not just limited to jewellery. I’ve got many talented friends in fashion and eyewear, and I love making connections between people. So I’m hoping to one day have a concept store under my own brand in collaboration with other designers. A curation shop, maybe online or even brick and mortar.


You have a broad range of interests: jewelry, eyewear, fashion. Where did it start?

I did my bachelor’s specialising in clothing design, but I also did jewellery and accessories. I graduated with a dual diploma. During this time, a professor of The Royal Academy of Fine Arts Antwerp visited us in China. I had been set on going to London after graduating. He convinced me to change my plans and go to the prestigious academy in Antwerp instead. I studied at the academy for one year but never graduated. It was a great experience, but it wasn’t exactly what I was looking for. I changed to Saint Lucas, which was a good move for me. The professors were really supportive and they helped me get internships in Paris. It was an enriching time in my life. I got to visit renowned showrooms and ateliers. That’s when I started to draw my first accessories and eyewear.

What inspires you?

My inspiration comes from everyday things, like the people that I see in the streets. Sometimes I see someone with a beautiful coat or jacket and it sparks ideas. I’m always approaching people to ask where they get remarkable items from and take pictures for my mood boards. I also like to record things and return to them later for inspiration – little sounds and fragments of conversations.

Are there specific people who inspire you?

I draw a lot of inspiration from designers I admire: Raf Simon and Dries van Noten immediately come to mind. I also follow all the big fashion shows and go to trade shows in Paris to see what’s happening in the rest of the fashion world.


Does Antwerp influence your work?

Yeah definitely, Antwerp offers you the space and the freedom to explore creatively. I know what I want and what I like, and the spirit of Antwerp just resonates with this: to be independent and to think independently. And the fashion here reflects that too. It’s off the beaten track and it’s not so bound by commercial trends. This morning I had a meeting with Walther van Beirendonck and he’s a great example of that. He’s part of the Antwerp Six, a group that operated outside of the conventions of the fashion world. In our conversation, I realised you need to have your own judgment and see what’s good for you, without the constraint of expectations from others.

You excel at matching your accessories to your outfits. How important is style to you?

The way you dress, talk, and behave represents who you are. It’s not about attitude but expressing personality. Style is the easiest way to express yourself.

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