JOYCE spotlights the new local talent

HOMEHIGHLIGHT ▸ JOYCE x Yeung Shun Leong Capsule Collection

A Mixed Martial Arts-inspired collection by YDC 2018 New Talent Award winner Yeung Shun Leong has debuted at JOYCE.

A long-standing supporter of Hong Kong Young Fashion Designers’ Contest (YDC), JOYCE has chosen a designer from the YDC finalists to launch their winning collection at JOYCE stores for the second consecutive year. Yeung Shun Leong, whose collection was inspired by Nietzsche’s “Übermensch”, recently made its debut at the renowned retailer.

As a fan of MMA, Yeung wants to highlight the fighting spirit in this collection. He has incorporated elements of judo, fencing and boxing into sportswear, with arm bands, straps, zippers that make for a functional yet creative collection that looks lived-in rather than brand new, using chemical treatments such as stone wash and waxing to achieve special textures.

“I want the wearer to feel empowered and protected, like they can just spring to action anytime,” Yeung said.

Michael Mok (GMM of JOYCE) & Yeung Shun Leong

Michael Mok, General Merchandise Manager of JOYCE, explained that he chose the winner based on creativity, choice of fabrics, workmanship, commercial viability, suitability to the Hong Kong market and functionality.

“With Yeung’s collection, certain things you can’t really see on stage are actually really impressive, like the embroidery on straps. He has given a lot of thought into every detail. It’s a very complete collection with a strong theme, and he’s delivered his message very clearly,” said Mok.

The collaboration has enabled Yeung to acquaint himself with different aspects of the fashion business under the tutelage of JOYCE’s experienced team. “It’s been a great learning experience in marketing, packaging, time management and production management. There’s so much to handle launching a collection like this, down to the smallest details like how an item is packed and described in the tag.”

The launch of Yeung’s collection is a welcome addition to JOYCE’s menswear lineup, which accounts for around 30% of total revenue. Mok explained that designers always take priority over trends at JOYCE, and they are keen to bring a variety of designers to their stores every season.

The brand’s confidence in local designers has also been boosted by the success of last year’s YDC collaboration. The collection by ARTO., the eponymous knitwear label by Arto Wong, almost sold out and received excellent feedback from customers. This demonstrates that customers are now more receptive to local designer labels if they can deliver good quality.

However, he is keen to stress that designers must keep asking themselves some difficult questions, such as why must buyers pick them, and what are their selling points. “You have to think deep on your brand positioning if you want to succeed in today’s market,” Mok advised.

This is why Yeung has decided to accumulate more business experience before launching his own label. He wants to understand the fashion business from different perspectives – from production to retail – so that he can be ready for his own venture in a few years.

He said: “I think it is important for young designers today to look at the Mainland China market and not just the local market, so there is a lot of planning involved before I can get started.”

He is off to a bright start, nonetheless. The Yeung Shun Leong Fall/Winter 2019 collection is now available at JOYCE Pacific Place store in Hong Kong.

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