I don’t remember there being a lightning bolt moment,” said of deciding to launch her own brand. She’s assembled on a shaggy fur chair at FN’s New York offices, one Cuban heeled boot perched on the bent knee of her embroidered corduroy three-piece suit, ready to share her unfiltered version of events that led to the birth
“There was kind of a convergence of scenarios. I was getting to the end of my tether of [residing] in New York City but not necessarily working here,” Chung said of the modeling-cum-muse gigs that had her on a constant Los Angeles, London, Paris loop. “I was living in the East Village and essentially just walking up and down Avenue A every night getting drunk. I thought at 31, that’s probably not the right direction for my life,” she deadpanned. “I wanted to go home. And I didn’t have a boyfriend.”
But the British style icon —who’s also a journalist and TV host — was self-aware enough to recognize her currency — and capitalize on it. After all, Chung had racked up an impressive roster of design gigs as a collaborator with brands including AG Jeans, Mulberry, Longchamp, Marks & Spencer, Ugg, Maje, Madewell, Eyeko and Nails Inc.
“I realized I couldn’t just pop around anymore,” Chung said of her lucrative collaborative flings. “As much as it was educational and a great experience to do so many, I felt that if I was still being asked that often, maybe there was something there of substance that I could build on and create my own thing. This was something I’ve wanted to do since I was 18.”