Interview with René Chu of Revé by René

Interview with René Chu of Revé by René

Eye spies

Text: Debby Kwong

Editor: Renée Batchelor

The Hong Kong-based designer launched the 5 Senses collection at Surrender’s reopening

Everyone loves a good pair of sunglasses. Whether you're into the micro sunglasses, embellished pairs or simply prefer amassing different shades for every occasion, we like to think of sunnies as shoes for our eyes — one never can have enough pairs! And if you're looking for a cult brand of stellar sunglasses to invest in, Revé by René, is something you must check out. The Hong Kong-based entrepreneur behind Revé by René (a play on the French word for dream) was in town to celebrate the reopening of Surrender. René Chu launched '5 Senses' the latest collection from her eponymous line of sunglasses which first launched in 2015.

René’s dream to create a brand that peddled statement eyewear proved to be a success, with Parisian boutique Colette making an order within four months of its launch. These sunnies have been spotted on everyone from basketball star Jeremy Lin to Sammi Cheng to members of both Girls' Generation and Super Junior. The 34-year old’s quirky and eclectic designs include the feline-inspired sunglasses from her 'Make Me Meow' collection, and a unique pair of sunglasses that featured a unicorn horn. We speak to her to find out more about the latest collection, including her must-have pair.

René Chu

What message do you want to share with the 5 Senses collection?
With 5 Senses, we want to encourage not just the exercising of our senses, but the exploration of them.

What’s your favourite style from the 5 Senses collection?
4AM in black on black.

Which sense do you think you rely on the most?
I like to vibe things out, so an amalgam of all the senses. But sight is a tricky one because there are so many things fighting for its’ attention. It’s so dominant that sometimes it’s better to close your eyes so the other senses can 'see'.


What has been the most exciting part about being an eyewear designer?
Eyewear is unique amongst fashion accessories in that it offers utility whilst imparting more than a glimpse into the persona of the wearer. I don’t think any accessory speaks as eloquently about an individual or is as representative as eyewear. Iris Apfel, Steve Jobs and John Lennon comes to mind. It’s exciting to be designing something that’s potentially so integral to one’s style.

What is Revé by René’s brand philosophy?
Revé by René is about playfulness, exploration and self-expression and discovery.

How does Revé by René differ from other eyewear brands?
Revé by René is the first to feature detachable components which allow wearers customisability.

Where or what inspires you?
Inspiration can come from anywhere, but more than anything else, I find inspiration from my dreams and life events. Dreams have a way of piecing together facets of your being that is thought-provoking, honest and unpretentious. So I believe that inspiration really comes down to living life, keeping an open mind, allowing myself to grow as an individual and being sensitive to the process — some of the best inspiration has come to me when I least expect it, this sense of surprise translates well in my design.


What is THE iconic Revé by René piece? And how would you style it?
'Make Me Meow' is the piece that started it all (The pair has a Wayfarer-like shape with magnetic cat ears that can be snapped onto the brows). Style it according to your mood with the interchangeable and removable cat ears.

What’s next for Revé by René?
Currently we are working on our next collaboration project (to be revealed soon). But more importantly I hope to be in the position to cultivate and catapult inspired young females/males who are in the pursuit of their own dreams.

What is one thing you want Singaporeans to know about you or Revé by René?
I want them to know that we are truly thankful for their kind support since day one. It means everything to us. Thank you ❤