May 10, 2021

by Liana Satenstein

Yeohlee Teng took time during the pandemic to look inward but also outward. One of her biggest inspirations was New York itself, specifically the hustle and bustle of Fifth Avenue and 29th Street, where her studio is located. “I’ve been watching my street, waiting for things to come alive,” she said.

Teng specializes in ready-to-wear with a sleek utility; many of her garments can be transformed with adjustments. The best example of such was a black coat that went over the shoulders like a shawl, affixed to the inside was a belt-like tie with two pockets. A high-neck tunic, inspired by the 2000 film In the Mood for Love by Teng’s favorite director Wong Kar-wai, can be worn alone, but here was paired with wide-leg trousers that made for an elegant silhouette. Teng likes to dig through her archives, but this collection was forward-looking. A dress with a high slit and a low-cut back with criss-cross straps stretching across the spine felt new, even sexy for the designer. It seemed made for a reawakening world.

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