Originally from Hunan, China and a graduate of Parsons School of Design, Rui Zhou, designer of eponymously named label RUi, is blending her native Zen Buddhism with a Japanese wabi-sabi aesthetic for an avant garde rendering of the female form and it’s intersections of security and vivacity. With a focus on the tension between the body and textiles, RUi takes a poetic approach to design meant to elevate the body through connection and subtraction. Barely-there knits meet at incongruent and delicate intersections and are reinforced with pearl accoutrements - each detail symbolic of Zhou’s experiences as a Chinese immigrant in New York trying to navigate the fragility of life and relationships across countries and cultures. The meticulously draped pieces move with the body, working as a conversation on the power in softness and fragility in conformity, while deeply personal narratives provide context to the intricacies. Intersectional, functional, and elevated, RUi’s conceptual design and storytelling are making necessary space for complexity in shape, identity, and expression.