Owner of MT Fashion Studio, 2012
BA (Hons) in Fashion & Retailing
Creativity in this industry is very important because it builds a brand and identity for you.
30 November 2012
The road to success
Written by Victoria Edwards
Just after her graduation, a representative from a Singaporean company approached Limkokwing looking for talented designers. Micky Tan was one of the students who were suggested for the job and she headed to down south for the interview.
“I went for an interview and she offered me the job where I worked for a year or so and then I came back to start on my own project. I am still doing freelance for them.”
Her first job in Singapore built a platform of knowledge that allowed her to have the confidence to come back to Malaysia and start her own company. Alongside this experience, in the Fashion and Retailing diploma course students are also taught how to run and manage a business this was exactly the entrepreneurial skill she needed to pursue her next goal. More than 5 years down the road Micky is now a successful entrepreneur with a shop to call her own, along with two other shops that she supplies her designs to.
“We recently opened our own shop in Melaka. My partner and I have a boutique, we brought in a few other designers to sell their designs there as well but we kept a few slots to design our own range.”
Micky’s talent varies; she supplies evening gowns and bridal wear to outside shop one in Bangsar called Nurita Harith Boutique and in Singapore called ILOVMOR. However, she designs for evening and formal functions; she prefers her designs to be easy to wear, through having a certain drape or flow to them. At her own shop in Melaka called The Heritage Room she focuses on pants, tops, dresses, and jerseys. Being the owner of your own company and label allows you the freedom to name your brand, and as any great artist does she named it after herself, Micky Tan.
Sometimes to realize your true potential you must be cast off on your own and take all responsibility.
What, you may ask, is Micky’s next goal, it seems she has reached a great point in her career already, she has her own shop and her designs are in demand.
“My future plan is to participate in trade shows like Fashion Week, I think this would be a good opportunity to show off my talent and maybe have my designs picked up.”
Every stumbling block can be turned into an advantage if you really look at how to turn it around.
Sometimes to realize your true potential you must be cast off on your own and take all responsibility. Micky says that once she set off to do her own business she realized her own growth as a designer, seamstress and a drafter.
“I will have achieved success when I can move away from the marketing side of things, at the moment I still have to do a lot of drafting, drawing and teaching. I want to come to the point when I can just manage the team.”
Is your cup half full?
As the economic downturn turns into an economic upturn people start to look back and think about the ups and downs that occurred. Like any crisis people can easily turn to the negative effect it had on the country. Micky has another way to look at things.
“The economic downturn did affect us but I wouldn’t say it’s a bad thing. Our Singapore orders got cut down by a lot which forced us to go out and look for other clients, so now that everything is getting better we actually have more clients then before. Every stumbling block can be turned into an advantage if you really look at how to turn it around.”
Trend setter or copy cat
Limkokwing strives to produce creative young minds to send out into their respective industries. In the fashion world you must be talented as well as creative. Designers will only become a household name once they have harnessed the title of a trend setter.
Believe that you can be good, believe in what you do, but be willing to accept tough times as well.
“Creativity in this industry is very important because it builds a brand and identity for you. People can define you different from other people. If you are not creative you’re just basically copying, you turn into another production person.”
When stepping out for your first time into the industry the best place to look for guidance is the designers who have been there before you. “Believe that you can be good, believe in what you do, but be willing to accept tough times as well.”
Take every opportunity; you never know where it may lead
Limkokwing gave me knowledge and confidence to go out and do what I wanted to do.
The day a fashion designer sees their designs on TV or even just walking down the street, is the day that they all dream of. Micky always wanted to be a fashion designer, the excitement was one factor, the other, being able to use all of her creative ability and produce something that is completely her own was the other. Her time at Limkokwing gave her lots of experiences; she says he favourite times were spent hanging out with her friends and lecturers while at the same time studying, this characteristic of the university helped her to be more relaxed even though they were still taking part in a lot of industry competitions.
“Limkokwing is very industry driven environment but you get to have lots of fun as well. It’s a very casual environment, yet with competitions we were always very close with the industry. Limkokwing gave me knowledge and confidence to go out and do what I wanted to do.”