Haylee Sofia Cheu

 

"With my craft, it’s about adorning a person with beauty that comes from within."

What started out as a DIY-project to make earrings and necklaces as a birthday present for a friend blossomed into creating beautiful décor for weddings and floral bouquets. Haylee Sofia Cheu shares her journey.

Photo courtesy of Shavonne Wong


How did Adorninglory come about?

It all started when I was about 17 years old, those days when I didn’t have much money to purchase a present for my friend. At the same time, I inherited a bunch of layered necklaces that was almost brand new from another friend. And so I decided that I was going to make something out of the bunch—I must have made a number of earrings and necklaces out of those and I’ve been hooked since!

I started making and selling accessories in this quaint retail shop while part-timing as a retail assistant during my poly days. Back then, my accessories were mostly made out of trinkets and metal wires which are different from the style I craft now with fabric. I stopped crafting during my final year projects but in between I would spend some little pockets of time I had crafting other stuff like pouches for leisure.

I received Christ some time after and God just showed me how this passion and craftiness I had wasn’t a coincidence but something He placed in my heart to do. The desire to pick up my craft again came strong in July 2011 and “Adorninglory” was birthed! The word “Glory” has since held a special place in my spiritual walk, and with my craft, it’s about adorning a person with beauty that comes from within. This time, I explored and created more with fabrics like felt and satin because of their lightness in weight. It’s really been a journey that I took with God; like an adventure, allowing Him to show me where He can take me with this gift He has blessed me with.

How has support from family and friends been like?

My family and friends have played an important role in this Adorninglory journey, affirming what I do, and more often than not, really challenging me to go beyond and step out of what I’m currently doing and more.

Coming from a background of absolutely no designing experience or whatsoever, the best support I could ever get is really my friends and family believing in what I do.

How often do you release new collections?

When I first launched collections, I would launch a new collection ever 1.5 – 2 months. But as I took on other portfolios in my full time job, I moved on to focus more on customized orders and special requests by my clients.

Is running Adorninglory your full-time occupation?

Nope! I’m actually working full time as a Brand Executive in a local F&B company and have been with the company for almost 5 years now!

Could you describe your work process when creating your pieces?

I’m not really a planner so I really design as I create. It doesn’t seem to be a good habit/ practice but hey, whatever works for me! I like browsing through blogs and Pinterest to get inspiration and tips on how and what to create. But normally my ideas just flow as I create!

Do you have a soft spot for accessories?

Yes I definitely do! I went through an accessory-phase in my poly years when I had short hair and wore a lot of mismatched/ chunky earrings and necklaces. I spent most of my money on those accessories rather than clothes but I’ve since toned down a lot. I still have a soft spot for accessories.

My dress sense is a lot about basics and neutrals, so I always have a necklace to go with my outfit. I started doing clutches and totes becauseI just couldn’t find one that I liked in stores that were affordable, so I thought why not make one?

I do make plushies but they’re mostly for friends and fun. Besides the accessories that I make, I have also started crafting fabric wedding bouquets last year and I thoroughly enjoy it!

What is the most rewarding part about Adorninglory?

I would have to say that the most rewarding part is to hear them telling me that they trust my point of view and just let me design freely, and to hear them squeal with glee after receiving one of my orders haha!

What do you have planned for in the future?

For the past two years I’ve started exploring wedding reception décor and customized accessories like corsages, boutonnieres and floral bouquets have. It’s really brought me a lot of joy and satisfaction doing it as well since I’ve always loved being a part of weddings.

There’s just something about weddings that is so beautiful and draws me in. I love helping couples to plan and magnify the precious journey they have taken, and translating them into beautiful décor that their guests can relate to. Hopefully this is an area of service whereby Adorninglory can grow and blossom in years to come!

A table décor for a wedding back in 2012.

A table décor for a wedding back in 2012.