You’ll see silhouettes cling and expand, a push and pull from the body as clothes flow from girly to tomboy, from industrial minimalism to ornate detailing, from padded winter jackets to gauzy silk tops. From sterile coldness to tropical sensuality. Either way, you can’t help but wish to get closer. To know more about not just the clothes themselves, but the brilliance behind the vision that is TheLineUp.
TheLineUp is a YouTube channel that focuses on fashion, styling and lifestyle, run by Julia Dang, a 24-year-old from Stockholm with Vietnamese roots.
Although TheLineUp started in late 2013 with Dang and former member Maya Nilsen, the channel now has transitioned to just Julia, with a greater focus on a contemporary, edgy aesthetic.
Which means: plaid coats in Paris, neon puffers for fall and gauzy silks for spring. Or maybe you’re into more of a classic leather and lace combination or would rather opt for crunchy boots and mesh bodysuits. Whatever your tastes, TheLineUp is a channel that is for everyone, regardless of your gender or tastes
And even if you feel like you’ll never be able to pull off those styles, TheLineUp will prove you wrong.
All of the drama, the contrasting textures and shapes, the in-your-face color that you see in street style and on catwalks that look incredibly difficult for the average person to don is distilled into simplicity and wearability with TheLineUp’s expert fashion advice.
Like her videos, Julia herself is chic and cosmopolitan. An effortlessly fashionable global citizen who we either all want to be or want to be friends with. Fluent in Swedish, Vietnamese and English, her trilingual roots show through when she humorously struggles with remembering how to say “Home Depot” or “pantry” in English in her lifestyle vlogs.
She doesn’t fuss with excessive commentary or the scripted humor of YouTube personalities. Rather, she dives straight to the point and keeps her video cuts streamlined, with slick R&B or lo-fi hip-hop music overlays. She sells you her visions of each outfit with all the finesse of a veteran salesperson that belies her young age. You can hardly tell that she’s only 158 centimeters tall with how casually she’s able to exude the cool charisma of towering supermodels as she models her clothing in gloriously artistic videos.
Dang takes care to explain the origins of each of her pieces, whether they are thrifted, DIYed, handed down or from small boutiques, as well as considerations for weather, a practicality that’s rare for fashion in general.
But it’s really her editing and film skills for her high-production videos that transcend her channel’s characterization as simply a style creator to a force that easily could be the creative direction for a major fashion atelier.
TheLineUp’s editing is geared toward the sleek, sophisticated look of a photoshoot rather than the whimsical nature of many YouTubers hoping to sell a bright personality in addition to their styling choices. In that sense, it’s easy to picture TheLineUp’s clothes and styling choices as the fall/winter (F/W) or spring/summer (S/S) collection for a high fashion brand.
TheLineUp keeps it fresh though; the films — for it would be too depreciative to call them anything but art — run the gamut from romantic summer film to avant-garde set design to hand-held camera type music videos. Perched on roofs, running through streets in Paris, jumping off cliffs and hiking through forests are all on par for what you might find in a TheLineUp film.
And brands, from Levi to New Balance, have noticed the channel’s talent and trendy-cool aesthetic that perfectly fits their brand sensibilities. From modeling with Nike to making promotional videos for an entire city in Sweden, TheLineUp’s conceptual flexibility and universal appeal make the channel a superstar talent.
Their April video just last month was a styling partnership with GENTLE MONSTER, a luxury eyewear brand famous for its eye-catching, artistic designs and a favorite of Korean celebrities like Jennie Kim of Blackpink and of Western artists like Beyonce and Billie Eilish. She styled her “Fall/Winter Lookbook 2020” in collaboration with Uniqlo that looks like it was taken straight from their runway, albeit with a little help from a treadmill and a well-used green screen. In our pandemic era, this is the virtual innovation that excites. Take notes, Dior.
Her videos outdo each other in editing effort and creativity, and that’s what makes her stand out in the fashion community — no one else is doing it like her. Her “Spring Lookbook 2021” is video game-inspired, in a “choose your avatar” fashion. As she cycles through each outfit and accessory, the sound effects, mouse cursor, highlighted options, folder tabs and treadmill complete the overall feeling that you are truly choosing some outfits for your new avatar. Although the video is only about three minutes in length, it’s obvious that it must have taken days or even weeks to film, edit and compile.
And when her fans say her editing is out-of-this-world, she takes it to heart. Literally. Her “winter outfits in outer space” is an astronomical take on this apt description. For one minute and 39 seconds, we are regaled with swooping transitions, a dynamic beat, street-style inspired fits and an alien setting that ranges from Technicolor meadows to metallic plains.
Despite what seems like an infinite wardrobe of beautiful pieces, sustainability is a big part of Julia’s and TheLineUp’s brand.
Julia founded and invested in her own clothing line, DANG STHLM, in early 2019 in an effort to truly grow as a young entrepreneur. A quick glance at the available stock on offer reveals a brand that reflects Julia’s personal style — a gender-fluid, comfortable style that incorporates staples that can be restyled and reworn for a long time.
As part of her business’s eco-conscious motive, Julia sources and researches fabrics and manufacturers in Vietnam, her home country, and ensures that her choices reflect her brand’s values of “neither exploiting our planet or workers” while making clothes that are “still designed with quality and ready to wear.”
Her clothes are made out of deadstock fabric, which is waste or leftover fabrics from suppliers or factories that no longer need them, saving these huge rolls of fabric from being thrown in landfills or burned. Her workers are a young fashion student and three seamstresses now working in the comfort of their homes, at their own pace. Her fashion then, is “slow fashion” — fashion that prioritizes quality over quantity.
This sustainable motivation too, is reflected in Julia’s own personal life — her 48 square meter apartment is carefully curated with vintage and secondhand furniture that has and will stay with her for years. In her apartment tour video, she gives us a rundown of her mirrors and vases that she bought off of Facebook Marketplace, secondhand designer couches and homemade straw baskets.
It wasn’t enough to give us poise, prints and patterns, TheLineUp had to give us environmental justice too. So if you have even an iota of interest in fashion, are searching for your next trendy look or care about ethical and sustainable choices, TheLineUp is for you.