Interview with the designer of STYL.MYL.
By Gioia Gange
Enjoy our interview with Kolin Chong, the designer of the brand STYL.MYL.
When and how you decided that you wanted to be a designer?
I have always been interested in arts and fashion, so after spending more than 10 years in the corporate world, I thought it was the right time for a change and to pursue my personal interest.
It was your dream job?
It is definitely a dream-come-true to be able to create a fashion label that truly reflects my take on style and beauty, but I do not consider it a job as I still enjoy doing it!
Which is the first thing you designed and for who (yourself,a friend…)?
I remember when I was around 8-9 years old, I had my eyes laid on my father’s encyclopedia, the sort that comes packed in a protective book case. I emptied the books within and converted the book case into a school bag complete with a shoulder sling. I even carried it to school the next day and it was totally functional! I guess that is the first fashion item I designed and created myself. I probably thought it was avant-garde back then!
Who’s the designer you admire the most and why?
I have always been amazed and inspired by Rei Kawakubo and her works. I like the way she is able to channel her creativity so effectively, turning ordinary into extraordinary, and creating order in seeming disorders.
Who’s your muse, your icon, when you create a dress?
I do not have a fixed muse while creating. Because what I design is unisex, I normally imagine how my designs will look on a woman and on a man. But all my muses tend to share a common trait, that is androgyny with edginess. My muse for the latest collection is Sia.
If you had to design an entire collection using just one color, which is the one you’d pick and why?
Navy. It is not as dark as black, and not as bland as white.
Who’s the first person you show your sketches to?
The first person to see my sketches is typically my sample maker, in order to ensure that there will be no major issue when it comes to making the actual pieces. I do seek opinions from close friends if I am unsure about a particular design.
The fabric you love the most…silk, lace, velvet and why?
I love to use cotton-base fabrics for its versatility and for comfort reason.
If your clothes had a soundtrack, which songs you’d choose?
Any songs from Sia, for the moment…
Do you have any trick to avoid that “blank page” moment when you’re at the beginning of the designing of a new collection? Do you watch a movie, flip an old magazine…
I love to travel and visit museums to get constantly inspired.
If you weren’t a designer which job in the fashion world you would like to do and why?
Fashion photographer. It is probably the closest thing to being a fashion designer in terms of creating fashion.
Deriving its name from a colloquial term frequently used to define an individual with an unorthodox sense of style, STYL.MYL. (a.k.a. STYLoMYLo) aims to create an alternative fashion that is genderless, ageless and borderless.
Infusing both eastern aesthetics and western sensibilities, the key element to a STYL.MYL. design is stylishness characterized by a certain nonchalant attitude, often with an offbeat quality.
STYL.MYL. places extreme emphasis on the cut and engineering of its creations, and adopts an experimental spirit in using both quality materials to create urban unisex clothing and accessories that are contemporary and refined.
Centred around an industrial theme, the androgynous style and sombre-chic quality it channels requires a person carrying it to possess the right balance of audacity and sophistication.