Take a walk along Orchard Road and you will be met with a line of shopping malls, all occupied with the retail stores of major fashion brands such as H&M, Uniqlo, Topshop and Mango. These stores are the shopping go-tos for most Singaporeans as they are easily accessible — there is bound to be at least one of these brands in every shopping mall — as well as affordable. For those who hold a bigger wallet, high-end brands like Louis Vuitton, Chanel and Givenchy are the obvious options for a luxurious shopping experience.
4 Singaporean Fashion Designers You Should Know
However, these streetwear and luxury brands are not the only retail offerings available in Singapore. If you are looking to add something different to your wardrobe, why not check out what our true-blue local fashion designers have to offer? Local designers in Singapore tend to not get the same love by its people due to lack of awareness, but they definitely have a lot more to offer than just your standard clothing item produced for the mass market.
Whether you are a Singaporean wanting to support local designers, or a tourist who is looking for something unique to bring back home, or a foreigner living in this city who is tired of repeatedly shopping from the same international brands, you will surely find something from these Singaporean designers that is right up your street.
COLLATE the Label
If you are looking for feminine and sophisticated pieces to add to your office wardrobe, look no further than COLLATE the label. Founded in 2015, COLLATE the Label is the brainchild of 31-year-old Velda Tan. Tan is no stranger to the local fashion industry. Before starting COLLATE the label, Tan delved into one of her first ventures in fashion design with the widely successful brand, Love, Bonito. After a few years of growing Love, Bonito into one of the most popular local e-commerce fashion brands available today, Tan left the company and COLLATE the Label was founded a few years later. The designs from COLLATE the Label exudes modernity and soft sophistication while emphasising the feminine form. Flowy dresses, tops with exaggerated ruffled sleeves, as well as peplum and drape details are some of the signature looks of the COLLATE the Label woman.
The start of Aijek began nine years ago in 2010 when its founder Danelle Woo was living in Shanghai. A self-taught designer, Woo started Aijek as a way to provide the everyday woman with stylish pieces offered at affordable prices without compromising on their fabric and quality. For the girl-next-door who loves her clothing pieces to portray ultra femininity yet still be practical and comfortable for everyday wear, Aijek offers just that. Aijek’s collection consists of dainty floral prints, tops and dresses with tassel and pleat details, long flowy evening dresses, and many more. Whether you are looking for practical and comfortable office wear, fancy dresses for special occasions, or jumpsuits for days when you are too lazy to put together an outfit but still want to look stylish, you will probably find it in Aijek’s wide range of clothing pieces.
Beyond the Vines
If you are a fan of the typical Scandinavian minimalist aesthetic such as those offered by high-street brand COS or luxury designers Ganni and Filippa K, Beyond the Vines is definitely a brand to add to your shopping list. Founded by Rebecca Ting and Daniel Chiew, the couple launched their first collection in 2015 with their autumn/winter wear. Beyond the Vines mainly provides a clothing line made up of practical basics in clean and minimal designs. Its clothing pieces scream understated elegance and are definitely a must for those who love a no-fuss approach to their outfits but still want to achieve an effortlessly stylish look. The brand’s colour palette mostly runs through neutral hues such as whites, blues and greys, and it often plays on the loose yet tailored fits typical of Scandinavian designs. From buttoned-down midi dresses to wide-leg pants to lightweight outerwears perfect for Singapore’s sunny weather, there is something for every minimalist fashionista out there.
If you are a minimalist fashion lover who loves to experiment with clean-cut clothing pieces that are accessorised with exaggerated details, Exhibit is one local brand to look out for. A fashion line conceived by Instagram street style darling Yoyo Cao, Exhibit offers a variety of clothing pieces ranging from the clean-cut and elegant to the fancy and attention-grabbing. On the minimalist side of the fashion spectrum, Exhibit’s clothing pieces do not only consist of clean lines and tailored fits, but special attention is given to details that make these pieces stand out from the rest of the minimalist fashion crowd. For instance, a pair of wide-legged pants are accessorised with side bow-ties, and a black lace top is complemented with a pair of exaggerated scalloped sleeves.