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News > Alumnae Interviews > 10 Questions with...OR Tianyi Li

10 Questions with...OR Tianyi Li

June's monthly alumnae interview is with the talented fashion designer Tianyi Li (No. 3, 2003-10).
7 Apr 2021
Written by Sophie Osborne
Alumnae Interviews

In 2014, Tianyi’s work was spotted by Istituto Marangoni at the London Graduate Fashion Week. Her graduate collection “VIVA LA VIDA” earned her a full scholarship to attend a master’s course in fashion womenwear at Istituto Marangoni London, which allowed her to develop her design skills.

The collection she presented at the end of her master’s degree “Labyrinth” was selected for the Istituto Marangoni 80th Anniversary show, held in Milan in 2015. This enriching experience encouraged Tianyi to continue her career in fashion. She interned at Giles Deacon, Gareth Pugh and Alexander McQueen during her studies. After graduation, Tianyi worked as a design assistant for Jasper Garvida, Ethologie and Ellis Bridals, a renowned bridal company. 

Tianyi was elected as the winner of the second edition of I’M Alumni Collections Revolution, a unique mentoring project aimed at supporting talent. Tianyi presented her first official collection “LIGHT & SPACE” in September 2018, during Milan Fashion Week.

What is your favourite memory of Roedean?

- The fun house plays, exciting sports days and the unforgettable leavers ball.

What was the best piece of advice you were given whilst at School?

- Find your passion, be independent and don’t be afraid to chase your dreams.

When you were at Roedean, what did you want to be when you ‘grew-up’?

- Whilst at Roedean, I was awarded the Arkwright scholarship sponsored by McLaren Formula One. After doing my work experience at McLaren, I knew I wanted to do something with design and maybe even become a formula one racing car designer. 

What are you now you've grown up?

-I am a fashion designer.

What does your job involve?

-Researching new inspirational ideas for my collections, sketching, sampling and working on freelance projects.  

What have you done that you are most proud of?

-Winning the Istituto Marangoni’s I’M Alumni Collections Revolution competition and showcasing my designs at Milan Fashion Week in 2018. I am so grateful that some of my fellow Old Roedeanian classmates and my Roedean Art teacher (Mrs Stanway) were able to attend the special event. 

What are the three objects you would take with you to a desert island?

-Water, lighter/matches, phone?

What books have had a significant influence on you and why?

-'Shoe Dog' by Phil Knight, gives great insight into entrepreneurship, highly recommended.

What is on your bucket list?

-African safari and scuba diving.

If you had one year and unlimited funds, what would you do?

- Travel the world and learn more about different cultures.

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