Dato' Bernard Chandran is a Malaysian fashion designer. His talents have earned him many faithful clients among Malaysia's elite most notably the Royal families of Malaysia and Brunei as well as two former Miss Universe. Due to this, Chandran used to be known as Malaysia's "Prince Of Fashion", but is now being hailed as Malaysia's "King Of Fashion".
Bernard Chandran is also a Malaysian television personality. He's known as the chief designer of the reality television show Project Runway Malaysia, since its debut on 8TV on 3 August 2007.
He is also a brand ambassador for the Tiffani By Izen service apartments (to be completed in 2009), developed by Ireka Land Sdn Bhd.
Chandran was a guest judge on Britain's Next Top Model, Cycle 6, Episode 12. The top three models were given the chance to model for Chandran's fashion show during the London Fashion Week.
Bernard Chandran was born to Mr. P Ramachandran and Mrs Chow Yook Lin. Bernard Chandran is of both Indian and Chinese parentage (commonly referred to as Chindian in Malaysia). He grew up in an average Malaysian family. His father wanted him to become an accountant and he almost followed this advice, before briefly considering being a tobacconist, "It's a good career!".
At aged 16, he had already decided he wanted to be a fashion designer and it was just a case of convincing his father. He initially studied fashion in a local fashion college known as International Fashion Training Centre (IFTC) in Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia.
During his time at the college, he was known for his shyness backstage around the undressed models during his initial fashion shows at the local college. Given three months after graduation to prove himself, he arranged his debut solo show, taking the first steps on the road to becoming Malaysia's top designer. Bernard's father was won over and helped fund his son's further studies, with Bernard soon winning a place at the prestigious Paris Fashion School in Paris, France.
In 1991, he decided to join the 'Open European Contest for Look of the Year 2000'. Chandran won and broke the record of being the first non-European to win the coveted title. For his pains, Chandran received a camera, 19 000 francs, and more important publicity and contacts which opened doors.
Lolita Lempicka offered him a job on the spot, which was flattering but he felt it was still too early. Chandran is only too aware how important this was in starting his career.
After honing his skills overseas in Paris, he returned to Malaysia to set-up his maiden shop in KL Plaza in 1993. The first 'Bernard Chandran' couture house was a small rented shop with a handful of staff in the heart of Kuala Lumpur. From there, he built up his client base amongst the who's who of Kuala Lumpur, ranging from the rich to royalty. He has now expanded his shop in KL Plaza to take up 4 shop lots and is nearly 300 square meters in area. He was voted Designer of the Year by the Malaysian International Fashion Awards in 2003.
Chandran has also started introducing Europe to his couture with a boutique at swanky Knightsbridge, London.
His creations are drawn from Chinese, Malay, Indian and other eastern cultures. He regularly does shows around the world, although he does tailor his overseas ranges to be more daring than his range for Malaysia. Bernard believes in the importance of creativity, confidence and vision.
Chandran himself has appeared on the covers of numerous Malaysian magazines, such as Malaysia Tatler, Shape Malaysia, Female, Men's Health and Parenthood. His wife, Datin Mary Lourdes Chandran has shared spotlight with him on few covers too.
Kanye West, Lady Gaga, Jay Leno, Rihanna, Tori Amos,