Monday, February 7, 2011

Feb 2011: NuYou Magazine, Singapore

Please click to enlarge. 

Feature in NuYou magazine -- the emphasis was to get a sense of different public figures' inspirations. Mine, briefly, were my travels in Europe, sustainability and ballet. 

“I’m not a designer who draws, but there are many types of design and not everyone requires knowledge of the technical aspects of art.” Her creative process involves the everyday, while she absorbs her surroundings of colours and textures. To her, her art, jewellery design, is its own language. Her love for designing jewellery started because of her wanting to find a ‘breathing space’ from her work as a political analyst.

Shortly after, Yilin moved with her husband to Bangkok. Unfamiliar with her foreign surroundings, she met a 60 year old veteran who had already been in the jewellery business for many years, and he, step by step, showed her the ropes of the industry. “Without him, I wouldn’t have what I have today”. Yilin’s line of jewellery has already been awarded two international design prizes and has been invited by world-class exhibitions in London and New York to showcase her works.

Jewellery connotes luxury and flamboyance, but there is a different purpose and meaning behind Yilin’s jewellery. “I put an emphasis on sustainability. Thus I try to have recyclability and society in mind to counter the excesses that have long been associated with fashion”. While this concept is relatively new in this industry it is also one a concept that is gaining more attention and interest. 

Yilin’s jewellery is produced by the people of the Karen tribe Thailand, and this gives added depth to the fast-developing society. Armed with only limited resources, their traditional skill faces the threat of extinction, but with the help of the modern customer who seeks unique jewellery, it allows such silver-smithing skills to be passed down and for businesses to gain from the profits in a mutually beneficial exchange. By using creativity and practicality, Yiin’s jewellery label allows the resources to be utilised to the fullest, extending the life of it. This is sustainability.

Yilin’s passion is travelling, when the best times were backpacking while she was in university. At the age of 29, she has traveled to over 120 cities in 4 continents. The initial source of inspiration for her jewellery came mainly from these trips and experiencing different cultures.

“Fashion and design have such a strong influence; its accessibility to the public allows its influence to be so much faster than other forms of art. We should leverage on this to get the audience’s attention (to communicate important messages).”

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