#KellyforKEBAYA - A Prelude to the Kebaya Collection
Beyond an eagerness to unveil our latest Collection, we believe it our duty as storytellers to delve into its dimensions and tell its tale. Vibrant presenter and avid jade lover, Kelly Latimer, is the first person we ever revealed this Collection to.
Together, we explored its inspirations, what it stands for, and what it means to own an heirloom.
Q: How did your love for jade come about?
Kelly: My mom loves jade. She loves, loves, loves good quality jade. She’s a fan of that very bright green, or emerald green jade. She got it from her grandmother. So there’s this perceived view of it as our family stone. Everybody in the family actually has jade pieces; my Dad has jade, like rings and necklaces, and when I was 16 my mom got me a jade ring - a white gold ring with a piece of square jade in it, and I had requested for it. I said I really wanted jade. So, when we got married, Justin needed a matching piece of jade to go with my ring, so we’re forming sets out of what we already have, to welcome him into the family.
Q: Jade is inherently significant to Asia; is that part of the reason as well?
Kelly: Yes. Since we’re half [British] and half [Chinese], Mum wants to do whatever she can to ensure we remember that. She would buy jewellery with the idea of passing it on to us. There are also pieces of jade that have been passed down in my family for generations - it’s a legacy, you know, these pieces of history.
Q: What does a “Legacy” mean to you?
Kelly: A legacy for me is the passing down of tradition and culture - one that is founded within your own family, because everyone is different, unique. For my family, because of the mixed heritage, that’s our legacy - the blending of cultures and being this giant mish-mash. But also, embracing and accepting all cultures. I think that is our legacy; the fact that we are able to adapt, accept and progress.
Q: How does your work complement you in becoming a better version of yourself, how does it complement "Kelly Latimer's Legacy"?
Kelly: I think, one of the advantages of who I am when I work is that I bring in that mish-mash of who I am into what I do. So when I’m presenting to local audiences, I can be super local, and I can embrace that side of me. But if I’m talking to an International audience, then I bring that side of who I am to the stage; I bring that to people. My ability to be a citizen of the world, to embrace my entire past to help - to connect with people using my past. As a woman in sport, it’s hard to stand out because people traditionally see it as a men’s arena, but now it’s changing and to be able to bring that femininity, allows the arena to appeal to lots more people; the masses. That’s another legacy I want to create - paving the way in an arena which many have not gone before me.
Q: What or who are your greatest motivations in the legacies you want to build?
Kelly: Family will always be my greatest motivating factor. I’ve always wanted to be a mother because my mother was such a strong woman before me, and so, I’ve always wanted to emulate that and pass that on. Knowing that I now have a daughter, I want her to know she can be strong too, and she can do whatever she wants if she puts her mind to it. It starts from a young age.
Heirlooms are pieces of history - our stories, our legacies. Stay tuned for the next part of our conversation with Kelly, and her husband, Justin. Meanwhile, keep a lookout on our social media channels for peeks of the big upcoming launch!
THE KEBAYA COLLECTION LAUNCHES