behind the brand
First of all, how are you doing?
I am very well, thank you! Feeling great going into 2023 and can sense a good energy to kick it all off.
What was the initial idea behind LISA YANG?
My appreciation for cashmere started early on. In the chilly city of Qingdao, North East China where I grew up, cashmere was the material of choice to keep warm. Not far from Inner Mongolia, my early life surrounded by production developed a heritage expertise of the cashmere that today, combined with the design sensibilities of Scandinavia, has developed into the LISA YANG brand we have today, with a considered and truly authentic point of view.
Designing with the philosophy of buy better, wear for longer, the quality of material and manufacturing is exceptional in all of LISA YANG’s pieces. It’s a commitment to exceptional fabrics, timeless design and superior fit. The kind of contemporary pieces you’ll want to wear again and again, which excites me!
I also felt that we had a unique tone of voice and perspective given my heritage from China and that I’ve lived in Scandinavia for over 20 years now with my family - it is a real ‘East meets West’ world and I am proud to represent both. It gives me so much inspiration.
How would you describe LISA YANG’s aesthetic identity?
LISA YANG offers a complete ready-to-wear wardrobe knitted entirely from cashmere - this is where we are unique and each season we build on the last collection to ensure that all pieces will fit seamlessly into the modern woman’s lifestyle. Whilst our primary material is characterized by its extremely soft nature and organic origins, I design our collections to carry a subtle strength. I try to draw from an uncomplicated focus on designing for the everyday, for an effortless take on true, timeless luxury.
Where does the inspiration for the collections come from? Has this changed over the past two years?
A hard question to answer - inspiration comes from many different areas for me. For now, I’m very drawn to the natural world and organic materials in nature. I will always find inspiration in travel too - experiencing new cultures, meeting new people and being in new environments is a luxury. Not being able to travel so widely in the past few years has been something I’ve missed a lot.
"Designing with the philosophy of buy better, wear for longer, the quality of material and manufacturing is exceptional in all of LISA YANG’s pieces"
You use high quality cashmere in your collections. Where does this cashmere come from?
Yes, we do! As a brand that only works with one material - cashmere - it is of course of upmost importance to us that we only work with the best qualities and production methods. I have a long history of working with cashmere and know it very well, from its initial life as the hair fibres on cashmere goats, to the optimum processing methods before it takes shape as a complete LISA YANG piece.
Our cashmere originally comes from Inner Mongolia, where most cashmere in the world comes from, and the best qualities.
How do you keep your cashmere designs in good condition?
It’s really important to look after cashmere properly in order to keep it in the best condition and to ensure that it is ready to wear for years to come. I design for a slow luxury and the cashmere has to be able to support this notion. We have a robust care guide on our website which I invite readers to look at. Simply, it comes down to keeping a few regular practices in place, nothing complicated!
How did you get into fashion? Is it something you have always been interested in?
Yes - I have always been a creative at heart, working in the wider industry until I started LISA YANG.
What comes to mind when you see someone wearing Lisa Yang?
It’s always a thrill to see people wearing LISA YANG! I like to believe that the LISA YANG woman is concerned with buying the best qualities and is considered in her purchases - of course valuing comfort but also our take on trend and seasonality. She definitely has an eye for detail too - something I always work hard on in our collections.
The LISA YANG office
"I like to believe that the LISA YANG woman is concerned with buying into the best qualities and is considered in her purchases - of course valuing comfort but also our take on trend and seasonality. "
In what piece should every woman invest?
Whether she is an existing or new customer to LISA YANG - every woman should invest in our Heidi high-neck sweater, it’s one of our best-selling Signature pieces and it’s a year-round favourite.
The LISA YANG office
What you learnt from having your own business?
Great question! I think the biggest different between running your own business and being employed is that you are constantly learning new things every day, which I personally find to be very rewarding. I’m very lucky - every day I get to bring to life ideas that I’ve dreamt about and it’s a real privilege to be able to work with my passion. Seeing the business grow and our collections be well-received by our partners and community is the icing on the cake.
One of the most important things I’ve seen too is that everything you do is about people - it truly is the team that makes all the difference, it’s never a one-woman show!
What does LISA YANG contribute to sustainability?
From day one, we have considered all our choices from an environmental impact perspective and made the best choices possible. As a brand that only works with one material - a natural one - it was important for us to achieve accreditation of its status as organic. In the past year, we secured certification with the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) that certifies the organic nature of textiles.
All our collections and cashmere meet this standard and it’s a universally recognized one that includes holding the brand accountable to both environmental and social standards throughout the production process.
Of course, being a sustainable brand is an ongoing process of progression and we are continuing to evaluate all our business practices to take further steps in the future to improve our position.
"I think the biggest different between running your own business and being employed is that you are constantly learning new things every day, which I personally find to be very rewarding."
Do you have any future plans you want to share with us?
We are always looking to the future and developing exciting plans for the brand! Stay tuned..
Discover the LISA YANG collection in our stores and online at Pauw.com.