Fashion  60 minutes with … Alicia Ong of AL&ALICIA
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That AL represents masculine edge and ALICIA represents femininity. Does that mean ALICIA represents you and AL is an alter-ego of you?)

AL&ALICIA is about a woman who is girly in her own sense but confident enough to dabble in boyish styles. She exudes street style yet remains classy. It is the contradiction between boy and girl and how we can work both sides into a look – bringing the two together. Hence the name AL & ALICIA. The name “AL” stems from “ALICIA” and ‘he’ is indeed the boyish side of “ALICIA”.

Please tell us a bit more about your background...
 
I come from a family of three siblings and a pair of business minded parents. After pursuing a degree in business, I went on to study fashion at Parsons, NY, did a couple of fashion internships and freelanced for a year in NY before returning home to Singapore to kick-start AL&ALICIA. 
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I know that you’ve worked at various big fashion labels such as J.Crew, DKNY, Marc by Marc Jacobs after graduating from Parsons. What made you decide to start your own label instead of continue working with big brands?
 
I returned home to be with my family. Singapore is a shopping heaven, but the design office of big brands aren’t based in Singapore. So I thought I’d take the risk of creating my own label, something that I had in mind for a long time.
Who is your style icon?
My two sisters whom I adore. We grew up together sharing the same wardrobe and love for shopping and fashion.


3 words to describe those who wear AL&ALICIA.

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Cheeky, boyish, girly. 
 
I love the concept behind your new collection A GIRL FROM BACK THEN. How did the idea come along?
 
The team and I were chatting about our childhood memories over lunch one day and got excited over the games we used to play, the fashion our parents would wear, our favorite cartoons and tv shows and it just kinda happened. It was also a coincidence that we were reading the book “The Girl Project” by Kate Engelbrecht and based some of our inspiration on it.
Favourite piece in the collection (A GIRL FROM BACK THEN).
 
The Pocahontas Poncho and all the fairy metallic pieces. They were quite tricky to get right but came out pretty nice in the end.
 
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Which part of your work you find most enjoyable and which part most frustrating?

Designing with the team and receiving positive emotional responses to something we have created is what keeps me going!
The toughest part would be working within deadlines and having to source for the right manufacturers to work with at the start. Without a reliable manufacturing arm, we wouldn’t be able to deliver the collection. Hiccups do happen every now and then which gets us more anxious rather than frustrated.

How many of you are in a team and how do you work together?

Our design team comprises of the 3 of us – Alicia, Ally & Shannon. We work together on all aspects of design, marketing and merchandising for the brand, that includes brainstorming on ideas, discussing silhouettes and fabrics as well as putting together marketing collaterals and ideas for each collection.

 

Run by two young French Fashionistas, Shop des Créateurs is the authoritative source for independent and genuinely creative-fashion online. Born and raised in Hong Kong, Shop des Créateurs is an independent fashion marketplace, curating the best of edgy designers from around the world, at an affordable price point.

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