The end of last year saw the fifth Myanmar International Fashion Week, hailed as a success by the thousands of fashionistas and celebrities in attendance.

Behind the event was John Lwin, 51, founder of leading modeling agency Stars and Models International.

John, who is a force in Myanmar’s fashion and entertainment industry, became a model in Singapore in 1989 while he was cutting plastic in a factory for $25 per night.

After being scouted, he soon became a top choice for brands in Southeast Asia and rode the wave for six years. One day, designer Bobby Chin warned him of the consequences of having an accident and damaging his good lucks. He shrugged it off but ended up having a fall and injuring his chin.

It was the early 90s—Photoshop didn’t exist—and he lost work. But the lull drew him into the business side of fashion. He decided to return to Myanmar with Bobby Chin to design clothes and eventually train models, which led to him setting up Myanmar’s first modeling agency in 1995. Later he became involved in event organizing and creating uniforms for companies—all of which come under his Star business group. He plans 300-400 events per year, including Myanmar Academy Awards, and 2018 is set to be as busy as any year yet.

As for his fashion predictions: silver and gold trending for autumn and winter, and a flowery color like green for spring and summer.


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