Five things you need to know about Thakoon Panichgul

Five things you need to know about Thakoon Panichgul

One of Michelle Obama’s favourites

Text: Pakkee Tan

Showing for the first time at Singapore Fashion Week, the designer is all set to rock the runway

It's been 10 years since Thakoon Panichgul set up his eponymous label but the Thai-American designer shows no signs of waning. Fresh from an electrifying show at New York Fashion Week, the designer is set to show his fall/winter 2015 collection at SFW, so here's a quick rundown of what you need to know about him.

1. He started his career in fashion publishing
Prior to setting up his fashion label, Panichgul started off as a fashion writer at Harper's Bazaar US. This experience led him to recognise a gap in the womenswear market for playful yet feminine clothes, so he took the leap and Thakoon (the brand) was born.

2. An influential photographer inspired him to pursue his passion 
As a young fashion-obsessed boy in Omaha, Nebraska, Bruce Weber's photography inspired him to join the fashion industry. The powerful imagery moved him to pursue a business degree at Boston University, before heading to the Parsons New School of Design to study fashion design.

Caroline Murphy photographed by Bruce Weber

3. Anna Wintour provided sage advice
In an interview with, he said of his first meeting with Anna Wintour, "I think that she saw potential in it and she said, 'Make sure that you take it slow.' And so that's something that I have done, I took that to heart."

4. His collections often combine diverse sources of inspiration
Past collections have gone along the lines of Masai Marie Antoinette and Bollywood Spaghetti Westerns. His latest inspiration? 19th century dandies.

Thakoon fall/winter 2015

5. Did somebody say Hawaiian shirts?
In sixth grade, Panichgul was smitten with Hawaiian shirts, which he thought were "pretty awesome". While his collections are now far remove from those bright tropical prints, they retain a sense of fun and humour that have certainly evolved from his early sartorial choices.