Shane Lin was born in Taiwan, educated in Boston, and now based in London. Coming from a long line of businessmen and women, she followed her family’s footsteps and studied Entrepreneurship and Economics, which later landed her a career in construction management and consultancy services. Due to the nature of her job, Shay has been working in male-dominated industries for years. As a female and a minority, she is very much aware that women had to fight much harder to be heard and seen in the workplace and society. Being encouraged by her sister and friends, Lin decided to start an account as her creative outlet. She explores the benefits of using her platform to amplify women’s voices by sharing her everyday style and hoping to, in the slightest, inspire the ladies out there to stop picking apart their bodies, discover their most attractive selves, and feel confident in their own skin.
Model & Mode Magazine recently caught up with Shane to discuss her journey in the fashion world, and here’s what went down:
Where do you usually shop? Are there any hidden gems when it comes to snapping up some awesome designer clothes?
I am a big believer in high-low fashion. I find mixing more expensive tailored pieces with more casual everyday pieces makes me look more styled and aesthetically balanced when done right. Aritzia, Storet, Arket, and COS do quality staple pieces with a subtle twist. Mango and H&M are also my go-to’s and good places for trendy and basic pieces at a more affordable price. For the past few seasons, they carried the most beautiful knitwear and dresses. I like to shop for jeans and trousers at Uniqlo. There’s something about their design that fits your body like a glove. I’d go to Zara for trend pieces as they are fast at catching on to the latest trends without breaking the bank. I would check out third-party retail websites like Farfetch, Net-a-Porter, and Forward for brands with hefty price tags. I’m always on the lookout for the best deal and shop around off-season or at the end of the season before I take the plunge.
What are your top tips when it comes to fashion for the cooler months?
Layering. Instead of putting on just one layer of top and a heavy coat, I’d start with a high neck or a crew neck sweater, throw on a blazer for a little bit of structure and complete the look with an oversized coat/jacket. This combo not only keeps me snug in cooler months but provides versatility for multiple occasions. I would also choose a nice pair of boots that give room for thick socks for some added warmth.
Where do you look for creative inspiration?
I usually take inspiration from Pinterest, people on the street, my mom and auntie (I might sound partial, but their generation had the best style, in my opinion). I also like to take ideas from other creators but avoid styling pieces the same way they look at others. I will usually personalize it to suit my aesthetic as some styles might suit others but might not make you feel 100% comfortable with them.
Is it hard to stay fashionable?
To me, staying fashionable is to have a clear mind and idea of what works best for you. Social media can be a double-edged sword. It is super helpful for new ideas, style tips, and inspiration, but it can make you feel more confused about what you want at times simply because there is too much going on out there at every single second. When I run out of ideas, instead of hunting frantically for ideas from social media, I would have a good look at my wardrobe and lay everything out in front of me. This helps to style things up visually in terms of what colors and pieces coordinate and harmonize.
How do you walk the line between being unique and having commercial appeal?
Under the influence of social media, we are so vulnerable to losing our individuality because we are not looking like someone else. What is in today can be out tomorrow. Don’t get me wrong; I used to fall into the trap of catching trends without thinking if that would suit or pair with the rest of my wardrobe. I believe comfort and fashion are equally important. I now tend to go for styles that I am the most comfortable with and confident in. At the end of the day, your uniqueness will only shine through if you are being yourself.
Are there any key trends you’ve seen for this year?
I see cut-out dresses or tops everywhere. I find this trend easy to replicate and not too “trend” driven. When done very minimally, I find a classically fit dress with very flattering and very fine slits, which adds a little extra something in a very inoffensive way. This year, I also see many blue and yellow in accessories and clothing, from duck egg blue, bright royal blue, and custard yellow. I love the contrast the vibrant colors create when paired with deeper shades, especially grey.
What do you think about the state of fashion today?
I am happy to see more and more people promote sustainable fashion. Both brands and consumers are putting more emphasis on sustainable production and consumption. The focus of the whole industry is shifting towards more of an environmentally-friendly narrative.
It’s got us to put more thought into what goes behind a piece of clothing and if what we buy has been ethically or environmentally produced. We don’t have to purchase new clothes constantly to create a new look or to stay current. We need to realize the power of reinventing, restyling, and reinvesting in something we already own. It’s still a long way to go, but I’d like to think we are on the right track.
What are the clothes we can rid our wardrobes of that are considered very ‘last season’?
Low-waisted jeans, neon-colored items, branded monogram belts, super exaggerated platform shoes need to be out the door. Those used to be the ‘it’ items, and you see them everywhere….(still remember that studded or rhinestoned Ed Hardy). It’s just my personal opinion, but I’m over them.
What fashion advice would you give an emerging fashionista?
I once heard a stylist named Molly Bingaman say that “the most attractive look is always the most authentic one.” I 100% resonate with that. How to show up authentically is something I believe we all struggle to a different degree at some point in our life. We put ourselves at the mercy of the critics and are constantly seeking acceptance, and because of that, we start questioning our style, taste, body image, and identity. My advice would be to take that control back. Don’t feel insecure if you don’t look like someone else. Celebrate your uniqueness, discover your authentic self, and everything will follow naturally.
The fashion industry has changed so much in the past few years; what’s the best advice you would give for staying ahead of the curve?
Don’t follow trends blindly, and don’t spend a ton of money on overhyped items. New trends are created every day and can spread overnight thanks to social media. Don’t feel like you need to catch that trends train all the time. I’d say to be selective and discreet about the fashion elements that are trending and mix bits and pieces with what you already have. Keep things simple. You don’t need to be doing what other people are doing. Source unique and classic pieces that will stand the test of time and will complement you and your wardrobe.