LOOQ behind the brand: Hadassah Lau, Founder, Hadasity

Hadasity started with handwoven wired cuffs and statement necklaces incorporating
semi-precious stones, pearls, crystals, ribbons and tassels, antique market finds.
Ten years later, finding her niche, Hadassah decided to turn her business into one with a clear purpose- to work with NGOs who employ and empower women marginalised and escaping exploitative situations.

Today, Hadasity partners Tia Cambodia, ROWAN and communities in Nepal and they have since added gold statement jewellery (Koumi) and classic, easy-to-wear and pair apparel (Phos) to their lineup. 

1What was your ‘Life before Hadasity’? 

I was a financial advisor for a few years before I started Hadasity and loved the people connection and the idea and challenge of growing a personal business.

2When did you start Hadasity? What inspired you?

I started Hadasity on my living room couch in 2010 when I moved to NYC with my husband for his studies. I was privileged to be in a position to explore the city and streets and to be inspired to create. It was there that
I experimented with pieces I found at antique markets and they were the building blocks of the key pieces in our Wired collection today.

3What were your brand’s first designs?

Wired Cuffs and Statement Necklaces that could be worn multiple ways formed the bones of Hadasity’s first designs. These pieces were something I had perhaps accidentally designed by experimental wiring with whatever material I found to be beautiful and complimentary and they took off with my first few customers and I was so encouraged to keep expanding on this idea.

4What inspires your collections Promised Land
and Phos?

Promised Land was born out of a clear intention to partner to empower other women, and specifically crafters that have been lifted out of exploitative situations. We first got to know them and their abilities, and then looked for ways in which their skill set could intersect with Hadasity products. 

 

LOOQAL: We chose to keep Hadassah’s long answer, it’s a riveting read. 

When I was a child, I used to wonder what I would be able to do when I grew up. I loved fashion, making things, playing the piano and the list went on. I felt like a “Jack of all trades, but a master of none”. Did I really have to do and choose only ONE thing? Growing up, I had always thought I did. There were always labels to fit into like “pianist”, “dancer”, “teacher”, “Athlete”, “Lawyer”. There was this game I remember playing as child – “Doctor, lawyer, Indian Chief, Rich man, Poor man, Beggar-man, Thief!”, where we use our thumbs on each other’s hands to walk up their forearms to determine their future profession seeing where our thumbs landed on eventually while
singing that song.⁠

Not many know, but my original childhood dream was to be a fashion designer. When I was in my teens, I was constantly cutting out fashion magazines, re-working my jeans into long denim skirts, tie-dying fabric, and sewing my own bags. When I was 16, I begged my mom to buy me a sewing machine and had also applied for fashion school twice – once for poly and the other time for Parsons in NYC. Twice, I got accepted but decided not to take up the school fees in the end and found myself wiring jewelry as a head-start into ‘designing’.⁠

The truth is that I had always wanted to design clothing but did not at the time have the means to pursue this path. When I was 17 after secondary school, I had started working part time to support myself. My parents did not financially have the means to support my studies in any way. At that time, I made a financial and logical decision to study mass communications and then becoming a financial advisor. 20 years ago, I knew of very few local designers that ‘made it’ as a career and was not ready to take the risk into the path unknown.⁠

It was only through the support of my husband that I started Hadasity. Being able to freely create without having to worry about finances has been something I know is truly a blessing and not to be taken for granted.⁠

Phos is for Women who don’t want to spend too much time thinking about what to wear and where to shop, yet when they have to and do – find a place that they can get all their classic pieces for a stable wardrobe that would carry them through the seasons of life.

5Two or 3 Hadasity pieces everyone should have in their wardrobe!

A pair of Koumi Earrings for a touch of glam and a meaningful reminder in your everyday.

The Covered in Light Phos Dress. It’s comfortable and luxurious, day and night.

A Wired Art Statement such as a Promised Land cuff or necklace for your one-of-a-kind expression.

6What are 2 (or 3) cool ways of styling Hadasity jewellery or Phos that people wouldn’t have thought of?

Our necklaces can be worn multiple ways and our Phos Everyday Light Top can be worn from day to night, workout to work. They can be styled with leggings for a workout, jeans, shorts but also a classic skirt that can take you to dinners and weddings, even.

7Upcoming key initiatives to expect from Hadasity.

We really take things step by step. We focus on stewarding what we already have, and constantly look out for ways in which we can improve and expand on our existing collections in ways that create life and meaning for us and those around us.

8What’s the biggest challenge being sustainable and ethical?

The biggest challenge in being sustainable is remaining competitive in pricing and also not compromising the way that our customer would experience our brand and product. I’m not sure there is a challenge in being ethical – that’s quite a loaded word to start with.
We started Hadasity with the intention to bring life, we keep this as our plumb line.

9What’s the biggest challenge being sustainable and ethical?

We support women and children through the organisations that we know and work with, whether by giving directly to them, or by sourcing from them where possible as a conscious decision in terms of where we as a business spend our money. In many cases sourcing from organisations that are working to uplift and empower women and children actually results in a much higher cost, compared to factories that mass produce
on a large scale. But for us in the end, we would like our business to be a channel for giving. Which is definitely still a journey for us, to be a business that both does well and does good.

All-time favourite fashion era.

10

1960s! I love the classic cuts and dresses that wrapped women
so elegantly and yet modestly.

11

Your personal glowy-skin trick.

Enough sleep and water during the day plus exercise and a balanced diet. I don’t think there are any tricks to healthy skin because I believe in building the outside from within. Of course, serums and good moisturizers and a good cleansing routine are important as well and I believe in all of that! 

12

Live well philosophy?

A decluttered mind and heart at peace will affect the way you live, take care of your health, skin and can even reflect in what you wear. Instead of trying to make up for what is lacking inside with things to apply on outside, attend to the roots in your life and all the other things will fall into place with ease to compliment, reflect and sustain the fruits of what is growing on the inside.

13

Products in your LOOQAL shopping cart.

The Liht Organics Color-Intense Liquid Lipstick, 100% Pure Fruit Pigmented Lip Gloss and Badt and Co.’s Tamina Ivory Mules which will go perfectly with my all-white Phos wardrobe!

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