When we carried out this interview, Jayla was in Japan — we imagine enjoying the snow, cat cafes and blossoms — on her graduation trip. In a few days we’ll get to watch her creations walk down the runway in one of the Southern Hemisphere’s most iconic and beautiful towns.

Jayla is one of a select handful of budding designers competing in this year’s prestigious iD International Emerging Designer Awards that has launched the careers of many winners onto the global stage. Finalists from creative institutions are selected through a rigorous process that eventually sees them showcasing their work on a runway graced by International media and guest judges.

We’re super excited about this year because Jayla is our very own homegrown talent! We at Popspoken LOVE local so we can’t wait to see what Jayla will bring on the runway!

Read her thoughts on her debut collection, her inspirations and what she thinks about Singapore’s fashion scene:

It’s less than a month to iD! How are you feeling right now? How’s your collection coming along?

It’s a mixture of nervousness and excitement, but definitely anticipating to learn from this experience! I had a lot of fun in the midst of building this collection. I hope my audience, too, will get a share of delight through watching my works on runway.

How did your collection come about? What inspired it?

I love the idea of how emotions are passed through human interaction. Like how we can sense happiness or anger through tone of voice, or simply via eye-contact. It is a beautiful mystery on why we, humans, are made this way. I just want to project this every day communication through fashion, so that people could see what they are like through my eyes. I am inspired by everyone around me! (Even the Starbucks barista who forgot to give me whip cream this morning. The emotion was anger >: ( ) 

What is something different that you are bringing to this competition?

I am delivering clashing colours on stage. People are often afraid to match brights with brights, or wear uncommon silhouettes. I hope to let them know that it’s A-Ohkay to not blend in!

What or who inspires you?

To me, being a Singaporean is an additional advantage. I get to see lots of different cultures, listen to stories from different races, yet still feel home.

I am lucky to be able to absorb and be inspired by such a load of variety every day!

What are your plans after iD?

I am currently into fine tailoring. I hope to learn the art of crafting a good suit! 

You studied in Singapore and overseas, do you feel design education is different?

There are definitely differences in environment and teaching styles, but

I believe that in design, it is more about how the student sees the world and how they want people to see it.

I believe that the required skills to project those ideas are taught in design schools every where.

Favourite fashion trend? Least favourite fashion trend?

I am caught guilty for not following trends 

Any favourite designer(s)?

Rei Kawakubo and Nicolas Ghesquiere! 

How would you describe your personal style? 

Mm… Unpredictable..

Will this be your first time in New Zealand or Dunedin? Do you have anything you’re planning to do or looking forward to when you get to New Zealand? (Apart from the competition of course!)

Yes, this will be my first trip to New Zealand. I’m psyched to meet great people from all over the world and experience my first overseas fashion week! 

What’s your favourite local food? 

I love popiah.

What’s one thing you would tell anyone about the fashion scene in Singapore? 


What is your guilty pleasure?
Want to show your support for Jayla? Tweet us at 3pm SGT (that is Singapore time for you!) on the 3rd of April 2014, Thursday, using these tags:

#TeamJayla and/or #SGRepresent

You can find us on @popspoken — follow us as we bring you exclusive snaps of iD Dunedin Fashion Week XV!
Picture credits to iD Dunedin Fashion Week XV.