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Style Bible Exclusive: Backstage With Tadashi Shoji

We show you the beautiful chaos you don't see behind that stage.
Style Bible Exclusive: Backstage With Tadashi Shoji We show you the beautiful chaos you don't see behind that stage.

Behind all the glamour and beauty, fashion shows are hard work. Models walk down the runway with perfect hair and makeup—cascading in impeccable designer pieces—but the calmness and serenity seen by the front row, is the exact opposite of the ruckus that happens backstage. And this fuss and frizz of hair, infinite swooshing of lipstick, and the walk-trot-run of models is what we came to witness, beautifully, at the Tadashi Shoji Fall/Winter 2013 show in Makati Shangri-la Hotel.

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Known for classic silhouettes with strategic beadwork and embroidery, and in recent years is famous for his slimming gowns worn by Academy Award winning actress Octavia Spencer (The Help), Tadashi Shoji’s experience as a designer shines through as he created beautiful yet also client-conscious pieces for his latest collection. His tenure in the industry has also made his work ethic transcend when mounting runway shows. Particular and keen on detail, maybe because he’s Japanese, nothing misses his bespectacled eyes.

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The side-swept bangs were too stiff, Tadashi pointed out before the run-through, and even explained in soft hand gestures how the model’s hair should move as she walks. The production crew stood still as the designer troubleshooted for a minute, and then decided off the bat to change the hair styling after the run. Quick and snappy, not a man who was stern we thought in his pastel colored ensemble, but decisive enough to make the weight of his choices felt.

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His assistant took photos during the tech run-through. We thought naively it was for amusement or simple documentation, but soon after the last girl stepped off the runway, Tadashi tediously reviewed each photo. Not one model was overlooked; girls were called back and the line-up was reshuffled before the girls proceeded to hair and makeup again.

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We saw how being a hands-on designer makes all the difference, but more than the beautiful clothes, the man behind the brand is worth watching as he works.

Watch out for the complete coverage of the Tadashi Shoji Fall/Winter 2013 show here on Style Bible!

Photos by Bruce Casanova

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