FashionBride Interview with Nancy Liu Chin

A couple of months ago I’ve discovered Nancy Liu Chin Designs website and, like a kid in the candy shop, I could barely make up my mind about the number of posts I will do about her work. The result? Well, more than a couple :)! Yesterday I had the brilliant idea of asking her to do an interview with us and, guess what, she agreed!

Discover in the next lines a person motivated only by her passions and her love for stylish, elegant and most of all heart melting designs. I’m a huge fan of her work so it’s no surprise that a consider her one of the best in the field. From my many reviews she sure get’s a well deserved place in my top 10 best designers. Read it as fast as you can and then go to Nancy’s website for a bit more about her and her work.

1. When did you decided to become a designer and why did you find this domain interesting?

After college, I went to work for a few retail giants including Gap and Macy’s. I’ve always liked working with color, fabrics, texture and spaces.

Floral design came pretty natural to me because 1) my mom is a huge lover of floral design and ever since I was little she just loved arranging for church or our house so I was surrounded by beautiful flowers and 2) retail merchandising is often about creating a welcoming space and a story in a very small area withmerchandise….floral and event design is the marriage of my love for flowers and my love for creating a “merchandise” story.

I guess I really wanted to focus on floral and event design after 9/11 because I realized that life was short and you have to go for it. The transition from retail to weddings was very easy because I’m actually married to a wedding photographer, Kevin Chin so I knew what were the pro’s and con’s.

2. Talk us trough the first years of you work. Maybe you could tell us what did change in time?

In the beginning it was all about getting projects. You are constantly thirsty to try things out. Whether it was a floral designer, new vase, or new location, everything seemed novel. It was definitely a time to develop your brand, your goals, and your style.

I think I was much bolder in the beginning because I was ignorant of what could go wrong. I’m much more research oriented now. I test things out more often. I triple count and check things because I’ve learned from those early mistakes.

3. Why should a bride-to-be choose your services?

I think it’s a combination of experience, ability to juggle, knowledge of the industry, relationships with my vendors, and understanding about the concept of team spirit. When you are new, one’s zealous nature might prevent them from seeing themselves as part of a larger team.

Wisdom comes from being softer, knowing when to speak,understanding when to more appropriate to listen, and actually helping others by pointing out short cuts. Because we’ve done so many events,we can react to unforeseen circumstances and issues with speed efficiency. We’ve(meaning my entire staff and design team) have honed in on what works.

We can often read each other’s thoughts and anticipate needs which a new and inexperienced designer might not have that ability to do. It’s about leadership and being able to think quickly. I think that’s what we do best.

4. How long does it take organize a wedding?

It really depends on the wedding and the scope of the work. No matter what it takes much longer than one would imagine.

5. Do tell us a bit more about your inspiration sources.

I have so many inspiration sources. Style icons: Audrey Hepburn, Vera Wang, Michael Kors, Ralph Lauren, Carolina Herrera Floral and Wedding Design lcons: Paula Pryke, Jane Packer, Preston Bailey, Orna of Ornamento, Ariella Chezar, Nico de Swert, Daniel Ost, David Beahm,  Lewis Miller Hotels: Viceroy Palm Springs, Clift Hotel SF, Peninsula’s Felix hotel,Begawen Giri in Bali, The Chedi in Chiang Mai, The Delano in SouthBeach, One and Only Palmilla in Los Cabos Wedding Photographers: Meg Smith, Lisa Lefkowitz, Anna Kuperberg, my husband, Kevin Chin – just beautiful! Beautiful spaces are inspiring to me.

6. Have you got any projects you’ve created and that have a very special meaning for you? Can you describe it or can show us a picture?

There are countless, not sure if I can pinpoint one. I would say the first wedding that I got into Martha Stewart is obviously special. It was the first time that I really did more than just the flowers. I really got inspired by the bride, Lisa Wong Jackson of Good on Paper.

She was a dream client who really put so many details into the wedding that the story just “popped”. Another one would be my own 10th anniversary. I loved that I put it together in less than 1 day. The idea came to me because I wanted to reuse these pears and apples that I just recently bought for a client.

Reusing and making it look fresh is one of my favorite things to do. It’s even eco-friendly.  [images of Nancy’s favorite weddings are inserted in the post 🙂 ]

7. From your point of view, how should a perfect wedding be like?

To me, a perfect wedding is about the people. It’s about genuine love for your family and each other. It’s about not worrying about details and going with the flow. It’s about being considerate to your guests and making them feel important and welcomed.

Decluttering the noise so that people feel comfortable, creating an environment that’s enticing to your guests so that they don’t ever want to leave, it’s about creating a warm atmosphere and it’s a little bit about expressing your own truths, not someone elses.

It’s not about impressing people but about doing something that makes you happy from within. Cherishing the moment and its imperfections that’s what makes for a perfect wedding….and pretty flowers help also!

8. And tell us what would you give her and, maybe, other brands can’t.

Interesting question. I think many designers can design and certainly many can design better than I can. But you can’t teach a business to care. You can’t teach people to take pride in their work so that they want to delivery the best. You can’t teach people to get passionate about something unless they love what they do. We love what we do and it shows.

9. Last but not least, do you have any advice for FashionBride readers?

Too much is spent on worrying. Sometimes people need to take a step back and not look too close because if you are too close to something you might miss what’s going on around you.

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