Tastemakers: Yoon “AMBUSH”

Yoon Ambush is one of my favourite style inspos and one half of the power couple behind “AMBUSH” design - one of the hottest jewellery and accessories line since, well, ever. Your likely to have seen her on Instagram with a shade of bleach blonde hair, oozing cool. The style icon was featured in A$AP Rocky’s “L$D” video as the leading lady we’d love to be. Although she calls Japan home, Yoon is a Korean American and met husband Verbal (a rapper and other half of AMBUSH) while studying in Boston, after this move to Japan to pursue his music career, Yoon soon followed suit so the relationship wouldn’t have to be long distance allowing AMBUSH to flourish into the cutting edge brand we know today. Just to give a little perspective, her husband Verbal is part of the Teriyaki boyz, formed by Nigo back when he was still working with Bathing Ape. The Teriyaki boyz became the first Japanese band to be signed by Def Jams US segment - so the couple are used to making big moves. 

 Yoon and husband Verbal. 

Yoon and husband Verbal. 

Ambush is futuristic - the designs are often edgy and incorporate pop art and surrealist ideas into chunky, statement pieces. The Tokyo based brand has been seen on the likes of Rihanna, Skepta, Pharell, Kim Jones, and Kanye West, just to name a few who are also personal buddies of Yoon. Mad. The first piece of jewellery that accidentally birthed the AMBUSH brand was the infamous “POW” comic style ring, that was only made just for personal use and for friends, but as the fans wanted more, they went on to create various colours of the ring and produced even more. Then in 2008 they established what we know as AMBUSH. 


Yoon is a busy woman. You could say she is the creative mind behind AMBUSH as she leads all designs, down to the tiny details and creates the imagining for the brand, but on top of putting together AMBUSH design she has done work with Rakuten (Japans version of Amazon), Sacai, Colette, Kitsuné, A Bathing Ape, Topman, PR work for Billionaire Boys Club, styles for Pharrell and assists with his press work in Japan and has collaborated with Louis Vuitton and DJs, her hustle just keeps on going. 

An admirable quality in ensuring the success of her small brand which actually only has 12 employees is her ability to connect. Yes she’s a business mind but she’s also very in tune with what is happening creatively as she’s so intertwined with the underground. Having roots in the US as well as Japan, means her world wide network allows Ambush to operate globally, with the help of her well connected husband Verbal. “As a rapper Verbal’s connected to a different street scene and because we do the consultancy thing we also know the presidents of billion dollar corporations. It feels like we know everybody in Tokyo not just like this segment or that segment, and as I come form the U.S. we have friends there and across the world and it just all works out somehow. I’m not just saying this in a boastful way but with me and Verbal no one knows everyone like we do, and that’s why we can work like this, it’s quite weird to have a business head and be connected to what’s going on.” - Yoon for Complex. 

So, what inspires a woman with so much taste? Speaking with i-D last year Yoon said “I think my taste is really wide. Inspiration can come from street kids though. I also love old photos actually, the club kids photos from the 80s and 90s, or even the 50s and 60s” and growing up in Seattle she would collect fashion magazines at bookstores, trying to find alternative style to what was around her. She named Pharrell and Zöe Kravitz as two stars who’s style she admires - were with her on those! Follow the IT girl on Insta to be inspired and get shopping on Ambush online.