Interview with Ivy Teong, Founder of Juwelen Design, Malaysia

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Ivy Teong

As a jewelry designer, Ivy’s designs invoke unique, expressive emotions found deep within the wearer.

Interview with the 2021 MUSE Design Awards Winner - Ivy Teong

1Please give us a brief bio of yourself and your design background.

I am the Founder and Chief Designer of Juwelen Design, a multiple international award-winning designer. I started my career working in corporate primarily in telecommunication and banking industries. I have since 2012 ventured into the jewelry field started as hobby. I is now a certified jewelry design and pearls by Gemological Institute of America (GIA) as well as a certified pearl threader by Gemological Association of Australia (GAA). I am also a manufacturing art graduate from Jewellery & Gemmological Science, Malaysia (JGS). I emphasize on quality and dedication to design for customers. My inspirational source is greatly from the nature.

2What made you become/why did you choose to become a designer/artist?

It was all started as a hobby I picked up during my weekend to pass some time. As I was fascinated with pearls, I’ve chosen pearl beading to start with. I decided to change my career midway as I started designing costume jewelries. I was thrilled because my passion was reunited with my childhood favourite, arts and crafts, and collecting seashells. I went on seriously in building my new career after my designs was supported by friends and family. I took on more in-depth studies on pearls, jewelry designs and jewelry manufacturing art.

3Tell us more about your business/company, job profile, and what you do.

My company, Juwelen Design, specializes in providing designer services and custom made jewelries. As a Chief Designer and entrepreneur, I mainly take charge of the designer role, gemstone sourcing, design and manufacturing direction, as well as the business portion of it, such as sales and marketing.

4What does “design” mean to you?

Design is about emotional art of expression. It is so unique it is unable to duplicate the moments, thus being very natural and original. There is no right or wrong in designing, as it’s all about design elements. I believe in expressing my art through jewelry, and that wearing the unique design piece of jewelry is not only an accessory, but an expression.

5What’s your favorite kind of design and why?

Another award-winning design of ours, Blue Daisy Multifunctional Collection, is my greatest design due to the concept, flexibility, interchangeable and femininity. It has 8 different ways of wearing, making the wearer feel fresh and new whenever they interchange the parts.

6To you, what makes a “good” design?

A good design can make a wearer feel engaged to the piece, therefore making them confident and their status or personality can be portrayed. A good design takes time. Therefore, in order to come out with a good design, it needs a lot of gathering and collaborations of the moment, inspiration, thoughts, creativity and technical knowledge.

7Describe your design style and its main characteristics.

I like to work with stones, colors, irregular shapes and versatility. I emphasize a lot on the concept and story. I also like to include the contrast factors as different beings, bringing out the uniqueness and attractiveness. Most of the times, my inspiration comes from nature and surrounding which I include as part of the elements.

8Tell us about your design process.

It starts with design inspiration, design concept, design sketches, design modification, design prototype and modification and finalization. Again, I wish to highlight that, even with the process are in place, it needs to be fine-tuned until it’s satisfactory.

9Do you think your country and its cultural heritage has an impact on your design process?

Depends. At times, I like to challenge the norm. But in view of growing up here and understanding the environment and market factors, I always try to adapt to the needs without tweaking too much of my design principles.

10Congratulations! As the winner of the 2021 MUSE Design Awards, what does it mean to you and your company and team to receive this award distinction?

Being a winner of 2021 MUSE Design Awards is definitely encouraging, motivating, and a recognition to our work. I am also another step closer to my goal and I have been keeping my international standards by far. It is always what level you are in an international level, how the world perceives your design, and it pushes you to achieve further in accordance to the feedback and evaluation.

11Can you explain a bit about the winning work you entered into the 2021 MUSE Design Awards, and why you chose to enter this project?

I chose this project for 2021 MUSE Design Awards because of the pandemic, which is a historical moment to the entire nation. An emotion that strikes during the first full lock-down of our country, a country that has been enjoying peace and free from natural disaster and even financial crisis, we can quickly revive but the health crisis is such a shock to us all. This is a project for remembrance of learning from the crisis and I thought that is the best choice to express to the world.

12What was the biggest challenge with this project?

The biggest challenge is the expression ‘practical amd acceptable’. How to deliver the message and story. How to make impact to the wearer? How to make the so-called negativity from the pandemic situation to a positive side. How to bring the brighter side when we talk about "surgical mask". It is so gloomy every day and how best to stand up again. I tried to turn the perspective when I did that, an idea strikes which is Hope. That is also the reason I added at the beginning. Glitters means sparkle, brilliance and cheerfulness.

13How has winning an Award developed your practice/career?

It has given me much more confidence and recognition. We believed that continuous practice and challenging yourself constantly will make a significant impact on the company value and the product you deliver to the people.

14What are your top three (3) favorite things about our industry?

The top 3 favourite things about design industry are its limitless range, imagination, and futuristic technology.

15What makes your country specifically, unique in the design industry?

My country is unique in the design industry due to its many different cultures. Rich in beliefs, choices, and lifestyles.

16Where do you see the evolution of design industry going over the next 5-10 years?

Design will continue to grow to make the world beautiful place especially in technology, health, and beauty related fields.

17If you were a student entering this industry or an aspiring MUSE Design Awards submitter, what advice would you give them?

For new designers, be prepared, don't quit easily because harvest takes time, and you will never regret this extraordinary journey.

18What resources would you recommend to someone who wants to improve their skills in the design industry?

In order to improve the skills in design industry, continue your curiosity and practice. Keep your fire burning.

19Tell us something you have never told anyone else.

My heart was pounding while seeing the results of the MUSE Design Awards.

20Who has inspired you in your life and why?

Oprah Winfrey, Cally Kwong, Wallace Chan, Jimmy Choo, Zang Toi, and Vera Wang. They are all my inspirations and motivators.

21What is your key to success? Any parting words of wisdom?

Believe in yourself. Persevere. Think out of the box.

22Do you have anything else you would like to add to the interview?

Feel free to visit my collection from my website,, or my social media, or

Winning Entries

M19 Jewelry Designer Historical Collection | 2020

M19 Jewelry Designer Historical Collection | MUSE Design Awards

Project name Jewelry Designer Historical Collection About the project Juwelen Design, based in Malaysia, aims to launch its new jewelry ...
(read more at MUSE Design Awards)

Juwelen Design

Juwelen Design is a specialized jewelry designer and creative studio design company in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia