WHY DON’T YOU...?

Harper’s Bazaar (Malaysia) - - The Inspiration -

BY PRISCILLA SHUNMUGAM

The Sin­ga­pore-based de­signer on Per­anakan cul­ture, se­cret get­aways, and fash­ion as con­ver­sa­tion. ... SNEAK IN TIME TO EN­JOY THE LIT­TLE THINGS IN LIFE? It’s been a busy time at the la­bel but I’m glad I stole some time off to catch Star Wars: The Last Jedi when it first hit the cin­e­mas. I’m a big fan of Princess Leia; I love her fear­less­ness and the in­flu­ence she had on all women in the Star Wars era. Watch­ing Car­rie Fisher’s last ap­pear­ance was like a send-off for my favourite char­ac­ter. ... IN­DULGE IN YOUR SE­CRET HIDE­OUT? Auriga Spa in Capella Sin­ga­pore is my per­fect re­treat when I need to rest and re­ju­ve­nate. It’s like step­ping into an oasis of calm, with vary­ing treat­ments de­signed to en­hance your well-be­ing. I al­ways go for the her­bal steam room for a good sweat, and scented aro­mather­apy shower after. ... FOL­LOW THROUGH WITH YOUR NEW YEAR RES­O­LU­TIONS? The most mem­o­rable book I’m about to read is The Art Of The Good Life by Rolf Do­belli. Some­one gave it to me on the 1st of Jan­uary this year, and the book is about putting strong men­tal mod­els in place for a good and prac­ti­cal life. ... DIS­COVER YOUR HER­ITAGE THROUGH THE MOST UN­EX­PECTED WAYS? There’s al­ways an as­sump­tion that her­itage is best learned through for­mal in­sti­tu­tions but I’ve found the best places to dis­cover cul­tural in­spi­ra­tion is your old box of mem­o­ries. His­tory that is per­sonal to you is not only mean­ing­ful, but beau­ti­ful and re­lat­able, too. For ex­am­ple, my Cheongsam 2018 col­lec­tion was in­spired by a mem­ory of me, sur­rounded by unique flora in a jun­gle re­treat in Serem­ban, Malaysia. ... START CON­VER­SA­TIONS THROUGH THE WORK YOU DO? My job is pretty sim­ple: to con­tinue hav­ing mean­ing­ful con­ver­sa­tions with our cus­tomers, sea­son after sea­son, and peo­ple who’ve never heard of us. The fash­ion world now is filled with com­pelling im­agery, cre­ated as an in­stant call of ac­tion. We try to com­mu­ni­cate our ideas through the de­signs that we make, im­ages that we take, down to the text that we put to­gether. ... RE­VISIT A CITY THAT MOVES YOU? Lon­don has been a favourite for a while now: the long walks in Hyde Park, the di­verse food scene that sa­ti­ates any culi­nary de­sires, and the way fash­ion has a pulse. I hit my sweet spot with a gin and tonic at The Lord War­grave, where the nat­u­ral light in­stantly bright­ens up a gloomy Lon­don day. www.ong­shun­mugam.com

J

Priscilla Shunmugam

Priscilla Shunmugam cel­e­brat­ing her Cheongsam 2018 col­lec­tion

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