The One Who Uplifts Through Colour

Hong Kong designer Mountain Yam shares why he wants to embolden the modern woman with his vibrant clothes.

Portrait of Tammy Strobel

Hong Kong designer Mountain Yam shares why he wants to embolden the modern woman with his vibrant clothes.

This psychedelic print was inspired by the desert waves of the Sahara.

"In Hong Kong, there are just so many people, and I don’t always want to talk to them. In fact, I want to escape and just stay in the countryside,” says designer Mountain Yam of his homeland. And he believes there are many who share this outlook, which is why he strives to use his designs to address this. His aim: to remind women that the world is vibrant and bursting with inspiration through the use of colour in his label 112 Mountainyam. 

“I see colour as a form of energy, and my label, as a tool to uplift women,” he says. 

His SS ’20 collection was inspired by a trip to Morocco in 2019. Motifs include multicoloured desert wave and mosaic tile prints, and embroidered sequinned embellishments based on items like heart shapes that he chanced upon on his journey.

My Reading Room

1 Hearts are a recurrent motif as Yam encountered the shape numerous times while travelling in Morocco. 

2 The designer backstage at his HKTDC Centrestage fashion show.

3 The sequinned letters were inspired by the love-messageinscribed trees in the Yves Saint Laurent Museum in Marrakech.

4 Colourful, voluminous pieces exemplify the label’s mission to inject energy in women’s lives.

His colourful creations attract women from the arts, marketing and public relations. But the 36-year-old, who has a master’s in fashion design from Hong Kong Polytechnic University’s Institute of Textiles and Clothing, says corporate types and civil servants dig his clothes too. “I think they can get bored at work, and they want to dress up a little,” he chuckles. 

Since the label’s debut in 2015, Yam has been making waves: He was selected to represent Hong Kong in the Belt and Roads International Young Fashion Designers Showcase Tour, and has shown at Paris and New York Fashion Week. 

Yam says he will continue his wanderlust inspirations for FW ’20: “Expect structural pieces and references to Queen Mary of Scotland.”

Available at Prices range from $160 for ready-to-wear to $2,100 for a show piece.