HRIPSIME MARTIROSYAN WRITES – Guo Pei is China’s most popular couturier. Well renowned for show-stopping magnificence in design, she was recently voted one of the top 100 most influential personalities in China.

Oblivious to the potency that awaited her, baby Pei was born in Beijing in 1967 to a teacher and senior officer. She went to the Beijing Second Light Industry School where she studied fashion design. Following her schooling, Pei worked for an independent clothing company, which she later left to form her own fashion brand, Rose Studio.

Her career took off with the creation of Rose Studio. She designed elegant gowns for costume films and red carpet events. Her works were even featured in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. She tailored dresses for Chinese celebrities, political figures, and distinguished ladies to her peak, in 2015, where she went global after designing international artist Rihanna’s dress at the MetBall.


The dress gained a lot of attention from social media, some commenting that it resembled some sort of salad, or pizza. It had memes flying left, right, and center on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. The dress itself weighed about 25 kilograms, with a huge circular train, edged with fur. The detailed dress embroidery took 2 years alone, which says a lot about Pei’s attention to detail, patience, and precision – not to mention workaholism.

Since then, Guo became an iconic personality in the global fashion market. She was even invited to become a member of the high-end fashion, chief governing body, Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture. This allowed her to showcase her designs on the Paris Haute Couture week.


Pei’s designs seem surreal, as if from a painting, or from a fairy tale fantasy world. Their robust colors and shapes bring life into any runway. In every dress, she elevates her pursuit of traditional handcraft, revealing her unending commitment as an artisan. That said, Pei is not bound by her Chinese culture, incorporating Western and popular styles and trends.

Pei admitted that her work was inspired by fairy tales, films, stories in history and legends. She loves telling a story in every creation she decides to pursue, and has employed over 500 workers in her studio, to help in the production of her exquisite style. Today, Pei has established a studio on Rue Saint Honore, a prestigious region in Paris. Even at 51, the future sure looks promising for this meticulous couturier.

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Guo’s designs are the epitome of imagination, beauty, risk, experience, skill and expression, all merged as one. Rihanna’s dress may have caused social media uproar, with people comparing it to salad and pizza, seeing that it was “very yellow.” Regardless, it is worth saying that Guo’s designs cannot be ignored. They capture the audience and leave a mark that sticks. She might not have been exposed to big names in the fashion industry, but she believed in herself and worked her way to the top. Once she was given the opportunity to show who she really was as an artist, she went all the way. Her story truly depicts one of a once sleeping lion, now awakened to challenge the fashion industry.


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