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Meet Amanda Yeung

Today we’d like to introduce you to Amanda Yeung.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Amanda. So, let’s start at the beginning, and we can move on from there.
Fashion has always been a big part of who I am, but growing up I never thought of the possibility that fashion could be a part of my career at all.

Everyone in my family is in the medical field, even my little sister! Also, I’m half Chinese, and that side of my family is fairly traditional; think wanting you to be doctors or lawyers, etc. Anything less than perfection was unacceptable. So, skip to when I went off to college and thought I would do something along those lines, but ended up changing my mind over and over about pursuing biotech, physical therapy, marketing, and finally ended up in graphic design.

Now, THIS is where the pressure of perfection really hit me at its strongest. Math, science, all that was fine for me; they had concrete black and white answers. You either got it right, or you didn’t. Design, however, that was dependent on who was looking at it, and it TERRIFIED me. I’d never spent so many consecutive hours not sleeping and sitting at my computer starting and re-starting projects, never satisfied. A few classmates and I even ended up taking short naps under the desks in the computer lab after being there almost 24 hours.

It was that feeling of dissatisfaction or not quite feeling finished, I had come to learn, was one of the side effects of being a creative and it was O.K. to feel that way. Unfortunately, after graduating, the fear of not being the best at what I did took over and I never even applied for a graphic design job! I went back to working retail for the summer and then got a styling assistant job, which was really just steaming clothes and burning myself over and over.

From there I got into buying, I thought how glamorous and fun it would be to pick out the stuff we sell online! Until it wasn’t what I thought at all. I was great at it, but I was bored, and the job lacked any creativity. Then I moved to marketing, but there’s so much that fits under that umbrella. The only position available at the time was on the email marketing team, not designing the emails, more so the strategy. I learned so much, but again I started getting bored. I wasn’t passionate about it, and I was still yearning for a creative playground.

For years I had always had this daydream of moving to LA where fashion was huge and the summers lasted practically all year round. I was too scared to really go for it though until early last year when I told myself “Let me just put it out there, apply to some places, and if it’s meant to be it will be”. I started caring less about being perfect and controlling every aspect of my life and instead decided to just say “yes” more often to opportunities that came my way and see how the cards played out.

Things really started falling into place when I decided to sign up for my Birthright trip to Israel (part of my family is Jewish), and I went off for ten days with a bunch of strangers. A week before leaving for my trip I got a call from Nordstrom Rack.com | HauteLook asking for a phone interview and then an in-person interview in LA.

I interviewed the day before leaving for Israel, and halfway through the trip, I found out I was the newest team member on their Marketing team! I company I loved in a city I had dreamed of moving too! On top of that, the crazy thing was a majority of the people on my trip were from the LA area, so I had already made some friends. The day I got back from my trip, I put in my two weeks and prepped for the move. I drove down the coast (beautiful, but not sure I’d do it again) with one of my girlfriends and left everything I had known for the past 20 years behind.

So this is where I am today: thrown out of my comfort zone and into a new city where I can feel the creativity everywhere I go, and this fuels me in a way I haven’t felt before. I know the heart of what excites me and keeps me going every day which is fashion, styling, and connecting with people. Now I’m ready to push myself even further out of my comfort zone. I am working on finding new creatives to work with to build by styling portfolio and see where it all takes me!

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
I don’t think anyone has had a smooth road, everyone struggles are different. I think the biggest struggle for me was overcoming the goal of perfection and the pressure to know exactly what I want and to have it all mapped out already.

There are so many opportunities earlier in my that I was too scared to even attempt, but not trying means not learning, and not learning means you can’t be better. Excellence, not perfection should be the goal. You will drive yourself insane and become your own roadblock if you feel like you can’t even start anything without knowing it will be perfect, which is insane!

Now, I wish I could tell you that here I am in LA with my own business, doing exactly what I want but, that would be a lie. Also, like I mentioned earlier, I can’t tell you EXACTLY what I want to do. There’s so much pressure to have the perfect answer when someone asks you “What do you want to do?” or “What are your goals?”

You get asked at family gatherings, when you meet people for the first time, at job interviews, but I think it’s important for people to know it’s ok not to have it all mapped out. What do you know? I know I love fashion and styling and food, I love working with other creatives, connecting with people, connecting others, and I love learning to be more unapologetically me day by day.

See, I know what I like, but I couldn’t tell you what all these things put together will look like in the end for me. If you’re like me, I say just ask yourself: What excites you? What makes your heart beat? That becomes the core of what you want and once you find that, let go a bit, don’t worry about being perfect.

Instead, take small steps towards that every day and have faith that if you stay true to what genuinely excites you and say yes to opportunities, things will fall into place.

We’d love to hear more about what you do.
A growing creative who is obsessed with style, connecting people through fashion and helping others use fashion to tell their own stories. Open to collaborating with other local creatives!

Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
My favorite memories from my childhood are probably when I was living on the East Coast in Philly (I moved to the West Coast when I was six). My family and another family would go to the Jersey Shore (I don’t remember guidos or gym, tan, laundry being a thing then haha).

We would go every summer for a week or two, and the best part was when the lifeguards would go home. They’d flip over their lifeboats, and all the kids would dig under them and claim them as our forts while the grown-ups whipped out all the goodies for their beach happy hour. It became our summer ritual.

Contact Info:

  • Phone: 425-214-4162
  • Email: yeunga23@gmail.com
  • Instagram: @forever_yeung

Image Credit:
Kelly Baxter, Darrell “Fuego” Spencer

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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