Dorothy Hui (left) and Hilary Tsui (right) outside their new boutique
Every city has that one independent boutique that defines fashion trends. In Hong Kong, the esteemed title goes to Liger. The brainchild of style influencer and actress Hilary Tsui Ho-ying (aka wife of HK superstar Eason Chan) and fashion buyer Dorothy Hui, it started out four years ago as small walkup where their friends could pick up fashion finds from around the world. Fast forward, and four years later the girls have just opened their third boutique in the hip neighbourhood of Causeway Bay.
Liger isn’t just about the latest or must-have brands (although Hilary famously made MBTs cool among locals several years ago). What draws people in are the girls themselves, who are known for their edgy and funky style. As such everything they sell is something they would wear, giving it that personal touch you won’t find in department stores. It also helps that their staff also have their own unique style.
The new 2,000 square foot boutique is quite different to the original and carries a larger selection of clothes along with more luxury items – albeit with a Liger twist. On the rails for spring/summer 2013 are offerings from Korean brand Push Button, Venera Arapu, Tibi, Kirsty Ward, Petar Petrov and Klear Klutch handbags. Next month they will also launch an exclusive line of trainers with Italian accessories designer Giuseppe Zannotti.
Also taking up a lot of space is their in-house label Oh My God, which they launched two years ago. It’s based on favourite pieces or collectables from their own closets that are no longer available. Cue padded bodysuits a la Maison Martin Margiela and other style must-haves.
My afternoon with the girls was super fun (they have been best friends for over 10 years so watching them interact was a treat). Read on to find out about their personal style, must-haves for spring and much more.
Inside the boutique
I have to ask – where did the name Liger come from?
Hilary: The name comes from our star signs. We are both born in the year of the Tiger and our moon sign is Leo.
Why is Liger different from other fashion stores?
Dorothy: People who shop here gravitate towards our style which is more funky yet sophisticated. It’s so personal – the criteria for everything we buy is that we want to wear it. Budget is not a priority for us.
Hilary: For us fashion is a passion which makes a huge difference.
How would you sum up your personal styles?
Dorothy: I like everything now. Before I was all about rock ‘n’ roll and vintage but now I love to mix things up, just like the shop. My look is usually funky with a bit of sportiness. I like to change it up – if you dress the same everyday you get bored.
Hilary: I am the same. I am much more open to trying different things – before I never wore blouses or shirts, but now I challenge myself.
What are your favourite brands?
Dorothy: Veronique Leroy and Petar Petrov. Petar’s designs are very classic but the fabrics are exceptional. He is very good at leather – he uses exceptional skins, kangaroo etc.
Hilary: I love the Korean brand Push Button and Givenchy. I look at their clothes a lot especially for Oh My God. I used to love Balenciaga, but now that Ghesquiere has left who knows? I am heartbroken.
What’s your current fashion obsession?
Hilary: We both love the Klear Klutch! We use it all the time. I carry everything in it.
Dorothy: It matches with everything. I am too lazy to change my handbag everyday.
The must have Klear Klutch
Favourite trend for spring/summer 2013?
Dorothy: See through. Stella McCartney did it beautifully.
Hilary: Anything by Givenchy. I am a die hard fan. I downloaded all the pictures from the collection on my iPhone.
Who’s your style icon?
Dorothy: Natalie Joos. She writes a lot about vintage fashion which I love.
Hilary: Carine Roitfeld, Chloe Sevigny for her quirky style and Kirsten Dunst.
Favourite shopping haunt?
Hilary: I still like Dover Street Market. It’s somewhere where I can always find things.
Liger, 55 Paterson Street, Causeway Bay, +852 2503 5308, www.ligerstore.com