Pose! Pose! Snap! Snap!

It has been almost two weeks since the Celebrate Your Body 2015 fashion-music-food festivity was over. Many of us involved are still sharing picture-perfect moments, reminiscing that night when we felt so good to have accomplished something big for ourselves, regardless of what the outside world thought. After all, the world revolves with or without us, so why bother what the outside world thinks, right?

There were so many talents that night. For example, one of my most favorite moments was the Rice Rockettes performance. It was epic! In fact, their dance was imprinted on my brain. Had I not already had three weddings (all to the same guy), I would have them performed there.

There were also moments where the audience were not there to experience ­– the full-day preparation of the stage, the rehearsal of the models (thanks to Ronda Swenson’s genius and generous coaching of cat walks), and the painstaking fashion photoshoot of each model by Leslie Rabine. She was so patient that she barely ate or drank anything that day so she could capture every model perfectly! So thanks to Leslie, I am now able to share with you some of my Summer 2015 collection from this photoshoot organized by Kearny Street Workshop.

Inspiration of Summer 2015 Collection 

The inspiration behind this collection was the Greek Island, Santorini. I have never been to Santorini but I have always pictured what a strong, confident, and fun-loving woman would wear when she travels there. The color group of this collection are white, bright red orange and black. The fabric types were selected to have a sense of hardness (strength) and softness (gentle and kindness) in a single garment.

Design 1: White jumpsuit with bat-wing sleeves, caplet, and a soft black belt. I want to make this design a strong-woman piece. Sunny was the ideal choice for modeling this outfit. She is smart, confident and she works hard to make our city a better place. Superheroes have capes, so does she. And even better, she wears the pants!Model– Sunny Angulo. Design – White bat-wing sleeve jumpsuit.


Design 2: White shirtdress with faux leather trim at the bottom and a caplet on the back (I like cape if you have not noticed yet). I wanted to make this a soft summer look without it being girly. So I chose chiffon and crepe to pair with faux leather trim at the bottom. The perforated patterns of the faux leather bottom brings subtle hardness and strength to the design.Model – Roxanne Pecadeso. Design – White shirtdress with faux leather trim bottom and a caplet on the back. When I first saw Roxanne walked in this dress during model fitting, I knew I wanted her to walk in this piece. She has a strong presence radiating light out of her. Just the spirits I wanted to project.


Design 3: A faux leather tunic never goes out of time and place. Personally, I love three-quarter sleeves because I am always cold. It covers me enough yet still lets out enough skin.Model – Genevieve (Genny) Lim. Design – White faux leather tunic with circular patter cut-outs and a bright orange red lining. The idea behind this design was “have fun and play” while being sophisticated. Genny’s bond-girl poses and her mannerism portrayed this right idea on the dot.


Design 4: OK, cape again? I know. But I could not resist. This dress has a longer cape because I wanted to evoke a sense of freedom. When I think of freedom, I think of flying. A longer cape shows this feeling better. And a pop of my favorite color– bright blood orange, which brings out a sense of positivity and fun; just what I think summer is all about. Model – Lauren Garcia. Design – Keen length dress with white cape and bright blood orange bottom. Lauren was chosen to walk in this dress because of her kinder sprit and carefree attitude. She has the natural talent of making the audience (myself included) to feel a sense of “Don’t worry. Be happy.”


Design 5: This dress was actually from a previous collection inspired by the saffron-color ropes worn by monks in the tranquil town of Luang Prabang, Lao. With the bright sky, blue ocean, and white houses in Santorini as backdrop, I always thought about a women holding up a bright orange scarf floating in the wind. So I decided to show this dress again because it translated that “flowing scarf” feeling well. (You can see my previous collection on my About page).Model – Gigi Giscomè. Design – Bright orange, asymmetric strap chiffon dress with empire waist. Gigi has some fabulous tattoos that I think visually balance out the asymmetry of this dress. The movement of the dress while she glides her wheelchair on the runway was just what I asked for. Aside from that, she was a great person to work with – on the day of the show in San Francisco, she arrived extra early by public transportations from the East Bay. She even skipped breakfast just so she could be there for all the preparations. This is the kind of dedication we don’t see often. I admire her tenacity and am very thankful that she was willing to model for me.


Design 6: This runway-closing piece was designed with my model, Silvia Reshmeen in mind. During model casting, I pictured this dress on her. Her walk was gracious and goddess like. The black faux leather top injects a sense of strength while the long bright orange chiffon bottom enhances the gracious movements, which Silvia nailed completely on the runway! And when you see Silvia’s unique artworks of pictorial calligraphy using Bangali alphabets, you can totally see the same kind of graceful movements.Model – Silvia Reshmeen. Design – Ankle length dress with faux-leather halter top and bright red chiffon bottom. This piece was designed with Silvia as my muse. Her graceful runway walk made my vision come alive.

All photographs were taken by Leslie Rabine. A shout out to Kearny Street Workshop again for arranging this photoshoot.

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Posted on 13 February 2015


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  • Stephanie Yeung: February 22, 2015


    Thank you for your compliments and for reading my post! You are too kind.

    I always think that models should not be just the pretty faces. They are human beings too. Especially since these model are not your mainstream professional models, I wanted to highlight them as human beings instead of having them just being coat hangers.

    My designs will be on the market this summer. You will be amongst the first to know before then. Thank you again for you support and great work!


  • Leslie Rabine: February 16, 2015

    Dear Stephanie,

    Thanks so much for your kind comments and also for posting the photos. I love the commentary about who the models are and the fascinating things they do. It’s wonderful that you took the time and to write so eloquently about the meaning of each design and the background of each model.

    You put me to shame. I MUST update my web site.

    All best and please let me know when your designs go on the market.


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