Sandy Liang is a real New Yorker, not afraid of anything this city throws at her, and more than capable to go after her dreams. The too-cool shearling coats she’s become known for are anything but girlish, despite their pastel hued fluff, and since 2014 she’s managed to stay just under the radar while catching the eye of some of fashion’s most influential. Sweet and spirited, meet Sandy and her neighborhood muse, our friend Sabrina!
How has working for several big companies like 3.1 Phillip Lim and Jason Wu helped to sculpt the way you went about creating your own label?
What I really took away from interning was how to communicate with people. When you’re working in this industry, you’re never really working alone. It’s incredibly important to know how to work with your team and your partners who ultimately allow you to create what you want.
How did you and Sabrina first meet? In what ways do you see her as a muse to the brand? Could you tell us about a few of your other sources of inspiration?
I met Sabrina through Instagram! I thought it was lame how all these brands would always reach out to the same celebrities and bloggers to wear their clothes and promote brand awareness, so I started thinking about who inspired me. I realized that there were all these girls who I thought were so cool, so I used my Instagram series (called #sandylianggirlcrush) to reach out to women in the creative industry who I found inspiring, who had an interesting story, to wear one of my jackets so i could take a quick photo of them.
Before meeting her I honestly had no idea what she was going to be like – she just has the most calming and relaxed vibes. I feel so good when I talk to her. She’s so smiley. And I think it’s amazing how she and her partner have been able to create a distinct perspective of food that was so lacking.
You have a knack for mixing feminine colors like periwinkle and powder pink tweeds with tough, shearling trimmed outerwear. Who is the woman you envision in this combination and how do you see her evolving ?
The woman is whoever appreciates the clothes! I’m interested to see how the collections will evolve over time since they are very much a reflection of what I want to be wearing.
How has the process of going from behind the scenes at a corporate company to venturing out on your own as an emerging designer been? What has surprised you the most?
What has surprised me the most is how willing people are to help. I am constantly stunned by how generous people in this industry have been to me in terms of giving me their time, advice, attention. Just knowing that someone has your back makes a whole difference. I have met too many people since starting the line who are just totally amazing. I’ve been super fortunate.
When did you first know you had an interest in fashion?
I grew up drawing all the time. I would sit in front of the TV during the Oscars or award shows like that and just sketch the dresses. I think my interest in fashion really grew when I started elementary school and I wanted to dress like all the other cool girls in Gap kids and Sketchers, but my mom wouldn’t let me buy new clothes unless I absolutely needed them! The fact that I wasn’t allowed to have these things made me desire them that much more, which made fashion into this unattainable thing for me.
Describe your collection in three words.
Funny Kooky Gooey.