Interview with designer and founder of Creepyyeha brand Yeha Leung.
Let’s start at the beginning. When did you know you wanted to be a lingerie designer? If you weren’t one, what other job or profession would you like to have?
I am highly enthusiastic about lingerie but I wouldn’t necessarily say I am a lingerie designer. As of now, I like to think of my work more so as adornments, but there is always room for that to change in the future!
Fashion appealed to me as early as I can remember. I’ve always felt a strong pull towards creating something with my hands. It was the only source of control I felt I had at a young age so it always made sense for me to pursue a career within that realm.
I have always been very shy so making friends was not easy. My love language has always been making or giving gifts to people I admire from afar. The earliest memory I have is from elementary school. There was a girl I adored so I made her a choker out of black elastic I found in my dad’s tool shed, with a silver flower pendant from a zipper of a hoodie and rhinestones I had taken off of my backpack. Back then, I used a stapler to close the neck piece. Fortunately, I found the right tools later in life. In fact, I still work this way. I like to piece things together! Anyways, I remember it took me weeks to work up the courage to finally give it to her. She was kind enough to accept my gift and even wore it from time to time! A true gift for me as well because it brought me joy to see her wear it on her own. We were never friends but seeing her wear it was enough. Since then, I have loved making things for other people and I feel very blessed to be able to do it as a profession. I am grateful for how far I have come since then.
Another path I would most likely take is sex education or anything involved with sex work. I have always been a very curious girl and I cannot share why I am overcome with glee whenever sex is the topic of discussion. Learning about it in school was not enough, I loved researching about it on my own. I remember going to “The Place” after school and just reading/collecting pamphlets that were full of information. I would even bring it home to share with my younger brother because of how excited I was to learn! I played pretend a lot and usually, I am the teacher quizzing him about how to prevent getting STDs and so on. I still have a desire for that. Perhaps in the future!
If you could choose any piece that genuinely embodies the Creepyyeha dream you had in 2011 when you started your brand, which would it be and why?
This is a tough question because I feel like I exist or relate to different worlds that could also collide in some way. It is hard for me to choose one piece because I feel they are all genuinely an embodiment of me even if I have outgrown it. I create as I transition and I find myself going back and forth between styles a lot. When I started Creepyyeha, I was more on the softer side. Lots of lace, ruffles, frills, bows and pastels but there must always be a twist of darkness to it. Spikes with flowers! Something like that! Later on, I found myself wrapped up in mostly leather but the softness translated in the color palette. Leather in pastels. Recently, I find myself exploring and relating more to my older work. A renewed, updated version maybe. Something soft but strong. This may not answer your question but I hope explaining why I simply can’t choose is good enough.
Bodies represented in the fashion industry constantly change. Do you identify with the ‘body positivity’ movement?
To put it simply, I identify with the individual I create for. I don’t pay much mind to trends or what is considered in or out. If the person I am designing for is happy, then so am I. My job is to make you look and feel good. However, it may be easy for me to say this because my work is custom made to measure. I don’t feel the pressure to conform to society on a larger scale because I am dealing with clients one on one. I hope that makes sense.
What was the process behind creating the custom-made piece with the client?
Usually, I have people purchase directly from my webshop of items I have available and they would leave me all the proper measurements so I can make them accordingly. Preferably, I like to meet the clients I create for and have a proper fitting but that is not realistic on a global scale. I do my best with what is given to me. Not everything I make is directly available on my webshop. This may be due to the complexity of the piece or lack of resources to replicate more unique versions of it. Even so, I do get email requests to commission a particular piece that was seen on my socials or requests from people with a clear vision of what they want. I especially enjoy ones with sketches ready! From there, I communicate if it is something I can do for them. It takes a lot of back and forth and an understanding of each other’s vision.
Looking at your work holds BDSM influences, female empowerment, and beautiful craftsmanship. How would you define your style has evolved throughout the years?
It has been over a decade since I started Creepyyeha and I feel as though I have lived the same life as different people throughout. My partner once mentioned to me that it never gets dull because we are constantly evolving into better versions of ourselves
As I view my work as something intimate, I feel it shines through. One thing stays consistent, I always love a good blend of softness with great intensity.
The last question: Does Creepyyeha studio have a particular desire to fulfil?
Right now, I am working on improving my work space so I can finally feel at ease by separating my work from where I sleep. Ideally, I want this space to be shared with local creatives. Students or those who may need a place to shoot but may not have the means. I want to share my platform for other independent designers and open doors for others like it has graciously been done for me.
My greatest desire for Creepyyeha is for it to live as long as it is meant to but I do dream that it dies with me.