When I returned to Hong Kong in 2008, I wanted to combine all the wonderful experiences I gathered during my training as a designer, and create a playground where brides can enjoy all of that, while capturing every little moment building up to their big day in a gown they can treasure forever.
It is combining all the good things you can find in a design house -without the restrictions of mass production and sales reports - with all the good things you can find in an intimate art workshop.
Unlike working with a sales representative, I don’t want to just sell you a gown. I want to get to know you and create one for you.
Every designer has his or her own style. Aside from sharing my philosophies with each bride, I also want the brides to take part in making design decisions as their gowns evolve. Although the gown will speak my sensibility, each bride is my muse. What I took away from my corporate experience and carried through to my atelier is developing new fabrics, designing embroidery layouts from scratch, designing for stars and hosting fashion shows.
I can now enjoy all of that directly with the end users, and I can do it without the pressure of quick deadlines and the need to juggle quantity vs. quality. I can sketch countless ideas, although I find that a lot of the designing happens when one is draping with the actual fabric. Therefore I do a lot of the draping myself. I appreciate both complicated, engineered pattern-work, as well as spontaneous, almost accidental draping, which can only happen when it’s an one-off piece. Therefore I try to have a bit of both in all my bespoke gowns.
My design training influences the way I operate my atelier, while my design philosophy comes from my art training.
In my elementary years, I attended a performance arts school, where I grew up with many other inspiring young teenagers who had big dreams to become actors, dancers, musicians and fine artists. For instance, I watched my fellow classmates express their passion through dance.
From the way they moved with the lush fabrics on their bodies, to the way they gestured to musical rhythms, traces of my artistic upbringing can be found in the work I do today. Like pieces of artwork, the composition of my gowns are balanced, yet asymmetrical lines suggest movement, leading the viewer’s eyes continuously throughout the body, shaping and molding the feminine form to give the wearer an ideal silhouette.
Lastly, people inspire me. I grew up with my dad as my very first mentor. He's an interior designer and fine artist who has challenged and stimulated me creatively since birth. I watched how his designs became integrated into his clients' lives as he built houses for them from scratch. Art became my dad's everyday tool and it became clear to me that I could create that for myself in fashion.
We are all often balancing two opposite characteristics and everything is relative to one’s surroundings. That is why you will find the persona behind my gowns both feminine and soft, yet structured and strong. They are artistic yet wearable. They are sophisticated and intellectual, yet sweet and youthful. A strong design chooses what it believes in and makes it bold. Something that is bold does not have to be loud. My gowns are organic pieces, full of layers, textures and three-dimensional forms.
It is not just a gown.
We are creating art; we are telling a story.