By: Tida Wei
Today, we get to sit down with our beautiful founder and fashion curator – Miss Dawn Yang.
In 2011, Dawn started Lexi Lyla as a means of translating her love for fashion and sharing styles she loves with her burgeoning fan base.
Three years later, Lexi Lyla continues to blossom in growing popularity with online shoppers, and has partnered with some of the most renowned brands in Singapore and Malaysia.
A rare chance indeed, we get a chance to ask our lady boss all the questions that we’ve been curious about all this time since we’ve joined her team. As she arrives to the office smiling in a chic black jumpsuit and Valentino rock stud heels , we grab each of us a cup of rose tea to warm up to this interview.
Hi Dawn, so stoked to interview you for our new blog. So what exciting things have you been up to lately?
I've been working tirelessly on Lexi Lyla’s revamp. You would know! (laughs) Migration and all the little nitty gritties has been a lot of work. Bet I look like a zombie today, I only had four hours of sleep last night. I put my heart and soul into the website, designing everything from all the new logos to the extra features myself. I especially like the Perfect 10 rewards idea that incorporates gorgeous artwork for customers to enjoy as they earn... online shopping should, and can be fun too after all.
Other than that, I just wrapped up filming of a few episodes in Mediacorp’s new drama series 118, you can watch them on Xin Msn. That was a very memorable experience and I hope my acting was okay. Friends always tell me my mandarin sounds very “potato” (westernized). But, in my head I sound perfectly like an a newscaster!
Next month I will start filming my very own cooking show… really looking forward to that, it’ll be fun. I’ll be sharing healthy, easy recipes. Yup I have a lot of hidden talents. Bet you didn’t know I eat 10 tubs of popcorn in one movie and shoot laser beams out of my eyes too.
Right, funny Dawn.
Speaking of the new Lexi Lyla website, can you tell us what inspired you to start the brand and share a bit about the journey so far?
Back in 2008 -2010, I was modelling and promoting for many blogshops. They were literally hosted on blogs back then! In fact many of those I did advertising for are now some of the biggest online shops in Singapore today!
So I thought, why not start my own shop? After all, my followers seemed to like my style and wanted to buy things that I wore. I’ve always had a keen interest in fashion and creative business anyway.
It’s been a humbling yet incredible experience. We used to operate out of my own home, my parents were very kind to let me convert a spare bedroom into a warehouse, and squeeze in a makeshift studio in our living room space. My sister and I had to do all the work ourselves initially. It was rewarding but honestly very tiring too. Since then, to the delight of my increasingly annoyed parents, we’ve moved to our own premises here with a team of five staff and growing.
I really learnt everything about running a business from the bottom up. From photography to marketing to warehousing and customer service. It’s definitely experience I couldn’t get in school.
I set aside a lot of time from my blog to concentrate on building the business, and many people were disappointed by that. But I think it's worth it. But I'm definitely going back to focus more on my first love, blogging again very soon.
How do you envision Lexi Lyla in the next, let’s say, 10 years?
If I could I’d have a store in every major city in the world! And I want to design a line of evening dresses, I love looking at glamorous dresses on the red carpet. And shoes! Well, I’m more of a go with the flow person. I’ll dream and let God lead the way. I always say, He is my CEO.
What does Lexi Lyla bring to the online shopping scene that others don’t?
I think the fact that I inject my own personality and taste into the brand helps. We also make sure that all our products are of good quality. There are too many horror stories of customers receiving cheap, lousy clothes that look nothing like the photos. That’ll never happen with us.
Now looking at you, we love your make-up look today, can you share with us what you’re wearing?
Why, thank you! I skip foundation and just have Silky Veil on my face, it’s a Japanese instant whitening cream that I endorse. I love the pinkish luminous tint it gives to the skin, eliminating yellow tones and makes you two shades brighter. I slather it all over my body too (laughs). A dusting of Laura Mercier loose powder, thin falsies, light pink shimmery blush from Etude House and Dior Addict Lip Glow. This is my natural everyday makeup.
What is your one must-have beauty product?
Sunscreen! Prevention is better than cure.
How would you describe your style?
It depends on my mood. I like clean and minimalistic styles, I also like the rocker and Americana looks. I could go from sexy and glamorous one day to relaxed and sporty the next.
I’m a fan of bodycon pieces and skinny pants as well, because I’m rather petite and big pieces tend to swallow me up.
I find that now, I don’t feel the need to dress up as much as before. I guess when you’re more confident and assured of who you are, you don’t need your clothes to scream “look at me I’m so cool” all the time. For casual wear, if there’s no special occasion or event, I like to be easy and comfortable. My go-to outfit is a pair of chic shorts and a comfy pullover to shield me from the sun. Then I accessorise with a luxe bag and accessories to keep the look polished. Honestly, I’d be very happy if I can wear a tank top and sweat pants all day long!
Straits Times named you a Style Icon for young Asian women, and many girls out there emulate your look. Do you have a style icon of your own that you look up to?
I love Victoria Beckham. She’s got amazing style, she's incredibly talented and has really proven herself as a designer and business woman. And she's married to David Beckham. 'Nuff said.
What about some of your favorite designers or labels?
Off the top of my head…. Jason Wu, Alexander Wang, Chloe, Marchesa, Monique Lhuillier, Tom Ford, Celine, Valentino, Ricardo Tisci for Givenchy. Too many? (laugh)
Lastly, a tip to look fabulous ALWAYS?
Good posture, confidence, and think positive.