Still remember when in secondary school some of the school mates especially girls, they wish to be a fashion designer in future, by reading below article from newspaper it let me recall the past, now I am here to share the passionate of a fashion designer.
A Local brand marries Korean design and expertise and produces beautiful ballerina flats and pumps.
It was the love of husband and the passion for shoes and accessories the gave the brand its name and identity. Tiamo, in Italian, means “I Love You”.
Sylvia Lim, executive director of the Bonita Group is very passionate about accessories, having helmed the accessories company Bonita for the last 20years. through her frequent buying trips to Korea, she got to know the market there very well, and is constantly on the lookout for new products.
Her husband and group managing director Teo Ai Siong has always encouraged her to pursue her passion, when Lim wanted to venture into footwear, he was more than happy to support her.
“I want her to do what she loves,” Teo says at Tiamo at Gardens Mall, Kuala Lumpur. Together, the pair came up with the concept for their boutique, where the focus is ballerina flats and pumps.
They decided to work with South Korean designer Jung Eun Ju, who has an establshied shoe brand called Zessel Bahn in he country. Jung, 36, has been designing shoes for 12 years and her designs are popular with celebrities back home.
After graduating in sulpture at Donga University in South Korea in 1997, she went on to the Norano Design school in Japan to study fashion display and coordination. Shen then worked for two years for Nicole, a French shoe brand in Korea, and discovered her affinity for designing. After that, she started freelance design consulting. Among her clients were shoe brand called Time and the Korean fashion brand Kuho, which is popular in Europe.
Zessel Bahn, which Jung stared in 2006, is all about high heels which are known to combine high fashion and comfort – the same concept she brings to Tiamo shoes.
At Donga University, she had studied human dissection as part of her course, and this enables her to know the human feet very well. She knows how to cut pair of shoes such that is wraps the feet in optimum comfort. She also brings her country’s expertise in shoe making to the partnership, which began last year.
“We take our shoes very seriously” Jung says. She personally cuts the last and lining – keys to a good pair of shoes – for every design.Then comes the process of bonding, whereby the leather is glued together with a non-toxic glue. It is then hand-sewn to the sole, and hammered at least 200 times for a smooth finish.
“This is the same process that famous Italian brands subject their shoes to.”
She also designs a special metallic rod on the sole of the shoes, to balance the body. To prevent blisters, she inserts a silicone cushion at the inside back of the shoe, where it rests on the heels.
After a pair of shoes has been made, it is baked in a special oven for 20minutes, to make it stable and strong. Next, the shoes are left at room temperature for a day to set them. This important step is the difference between shoes that last and those that fall apart after a few wears.
Jung uses all types of materials for her creations, from satin to exotic leather, denim, lambskin and suede. Tiamo has five main ranges – Young Hippie for teens and tweens, Modern Classic and Career Fashion for working women, Dressy Elegant for the weekend and Celeb Glam for special occasions. Another specialty is the Mum and Daughter range; now little girls can really play dress up with identical shoes as that of their mummies.
Customers can take the shoes from casual to glamorous by adding a gem-encrusted clip-on to a pair of pumps.
“Everyone needs a pair of comfortable shoes, and wearing flats doesn’t have to be boring and unglamorous.”
“Here we offer customers the best designs coupled with comfort, so she can go from a formal look at work to a flirty look for dancing the night away,”says Lim.
~Tiamo is at The Gardens, Mid Valley City, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.