She’s young, stylish and one of the strongest fashion forces to reckon with. Yep, we’re talking about Amy Yasmine, the one-third power behind The List, the new digital presence that’s talk-of-the-town. This free-spirited young lady is not only a dynamic leader; she’s also a patriot in a sense. When she’s not managing her magazine, this anak Malaysia is attending fashion shows worldwide and gracefully contributing her opinions and vast knowledge on fashion to international platforms the likes of Kazakhstan’s esteemed platform The Front Row.
Amy’s decision to join The List as Editor-in-Chief came shortly after her return to Kuala Lumpur from England where she’d lived for nearly eight years to study at the London College of Fashion. Her fashion career post-graduation was jumpstarted by assisting fashion PR agencies with runway shows and reporting on international fashion weeks, before scoring her big gig at The Front Row.
Heavily influenced by London’s cultural diversity, it was not long before Amy felt the need to share with the world her unique sartorial outtakes and multifaceted outlook on the fashion industry. We managed a quick chat with this spunky lass right before she left for New York Fashion Week.
When did you first discover your passion for fashion, and how did it flourish?
I suppose in some way I had always known that fashion was going to be a part of me – one way or another. As a child I used to run around the house in my mother’s Ferragamo heels, and later on in primary school was introduced to the film Clueless which, needless to say sold me. Throughout primary and even high school, I used to sketch clothing and shoes for the fun of it and when I moved to London, everything became a reality. I was no longer that little girl who dreamt from afar.
You’re one of the founders of The List (alongside Nicholas Mak and Natasha Loo). What’s the inspiration behind the platform and how did the idea for it come about?
It generated from one of our small coffee sessions from when I was on holiday in Malaysia three years ago. We spoke about the growing fashion industry here and the limited local (high) fashion platforms we have at the moment. It also came out of sheer respect and love for home grown talent, and we came to the conclusion, “why not show the world what we can do?”
On the other end of that as well, we wanted to inspire the readers in Malaysia to dream and to push their imaginations and ideas in fashion by bringing in content from around the world through our writers, who are based internationally. We wanted The List to become a window into what goes on in the fashion industry in Asia as well as what goes on, on the other side of the world.
Who are your target readers, and what are your goals with that?
At the moment our current readers are most predominantly women aged 18 to 35 although that is constantly changing according to content. Ultimately, I hope to be able to inspire and help the progression of the local fashion industry here in Malaysia, so one day we can see Kuala Lumpur become a city that could rival the likes of London, New York, Milan and Paris.
The website looks amazing! To what extent are you involved with its design, given that there are two other main voices in the team?
First of all – thank you! I’m very glad to hear such kind words as we had spent quite a considerable amount of time designing the site. Luckily for us, we share the same design aesthetic and appreciate simplicity, so more often than not it was an equal collaborative effort between Nicholas, Natasha and I. I had a rough idea on how the website should look like (and function). However, without my partners’ help and creative input, we would not have been able to come up with the website that you see today.
You’re an Editor in Chief of a magazine at the tender age of 25! What are the responsibilities that you oversee?
My responsibilities keep expanding as the website progresses. At the moment, I oversee the overall content of the website spanning from fashion, beauty, arts/culture as well as its editorial. I organise deadlines, review pitches and of course edit articles, but I also sometimes create some of the graphic content that you see accompanying our articles. And our writers, like I mentioned, are spread out throughout several countries, which means that I manage them on a day to day basis on multiple timezones, and for that I must thank the Internet for keeping us close!
With fashion month happening at the moment, it also means added responsibilities of ensuring and helping our writers receive fashion week invites (New York, London, Milan and Paris) and sending accreditation to respective fashion bodies.
You’re also a fashion consultant. What are your responsibilities with that, and how do you manage your time between your jobs?
Considering my position at The List, my involvement as a fashion consultant is on hiatus until perhaps a unique and interesting opportunity arises. That said, I provide certain designers some guidance on how to make collections more relatable to their client without compromising on the current market. Sometimes that involves styling and a little creative input into a collection as well. I’m no designer, although perhaps my worrying shopping addiction has benefited them in some way!
What is a fashion trend you’d love to see more of? What about one that turns you off when it’s done?
MORE: Pajamas as daywear (backtrack to Dolce and Gabbana Spring 2009). There’s something quite magical about being able to wake up wearing clothes that you’re going to be running in the entire day. Elastic waists are the stuff of legends (#lazychic!).
LESS: Jackets as capes. I’ve been guilty of this trend for quite some time. However, I’ve come to a sudden realisation that it’s starting to get just a tad bit tiring.
What is your favourite item in your wardrobe, and why?
A Homer Simpson t-shirt that I got off The Cobra Snake a few years back! It’s nothing too fancy, but it is unassumingly loud and hilarious, with Homer Simpson’s head scaled up to about 400%. Nobody gets me like Homer Simpson does.
Name an icon in the fashion industry that you look up to, and tell us why the personality deserves to get the same love from the rest of the world!
The fashion world is never short of eccentrics, but I must name Michele Lamy (partner to designer Rick Owens) as the one I look up to the most. There is something quite bewitching about her – from her gold teeth and tattooed fingers, to the oversized black swath of Rick Owens clothing that she’s always seen wearing. After all, this is the lady who lived lives as a lawyer, stripper, designer and restaurateur. She finds beauty in the most unexpected of places, and has inspired me to do the same. She’s a poetic modern-day Deleuzian who you can bet that you can get down with.
Which fashion brands do you personally vouch for, and why?
Canadian designer Steven Tai has a knack for manipulating fabrics through unconventional methods. You could always expect the unexpected from his collections, mixed in with a little bit of humour and awkwardness that sets him apart from the rest. I’m also quite a big fan of Rosie Assoulin, Delpozo by Josep Font and Russian designers Alexander Terekhov and Ala Russe by Anastasia Romantsova. These designers have innate understanding of what women want and how they want to dress.
To view Amy’s work, head on to www.thelist-mag.com.