The work that Ambush’s Yoon Ahn showed for Dior Homme at the Paris Men’s Fashion Week in June spotlights one of the most hyped street-style jewellery/clothing labels out there. That Ms Ahn, co-founder and designer, was singled out by Dior designer Kim Jones to finish the customary catwalk strut at the end of the showing is indication of her place in the streetwear-invades-luxury-houses scheme of things. Simply put, she’s well-placed.
We have never taken a close look at the jewellery of Ambush before. This recently caught our eye: a silver charm bracelet not without charm, but as bracelets with detachable dangles go, it isn’t affixed with anything that surprises or beguiles. Its appeal, therefore, lies in the fact that so few jewellery brands offer charm bracelets, particularly those that are unashamedly bold and busy—unlike the discreet prettiness of Pandora.
For Millennials, this is cute as it comprises articles not associated with contemporary living. In fact, the retro choice seems to counter the modern iterations of these things: the signature lock (as oppose to the digital kind), key (the lock’s companion, now in the shadow of card, password, or biometrics), teddy bear (rather than any gaming creature, such as those from the Pokémon clan), a stalk of rose (not those bearing pixels or the result of 3D printing), a pen cap (substituting the stylus or even finger for visual and text input), safety pins (instead of Velcro), bottle cap (over the screw-top version), paper clip (in place of the also-old staple) and an old-fashioned symbol (perhaps only the designer knows its significance). For the rest who’ve been there, done that, this exhibits lame nostalgia.
In fact, Ambush, created in 2008 by Ms Ahn (a Korean-American) and her husband Young Kee Yu (aka Verbal—a Korean-Japanese), makes expensive jewellery based on rather common objects without really elevating them. While the duo’s personal taste reportedly veers towards happenings on the fringe, the designs of Ambush is far more commercial and relatable, perhaps to better appeal to the legion of fans who happily adopt street style with more passion and dedication than they do cats.
Ambush charm bracelet, SGD2,130, is available at DSMS. Photo: Ambush