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Female Singapore|November 2020
LOCAL LABEL BEYOND THE VINES HAS COME A LONG WAY SINCE ITS TO MENTION STORES IN FIVE COUNTRIES), IT’S THE ARCHETYPE OF A, ’ INCEPTION FIVE YEARS AGO. WITH AN EXTENSIVE REBRANDING IN SINGAPORE FASHION LABEL MADE GOOD. SO WHO BETTER TO DISCUSS. PROCESS AND A NEWLY OPENED CONCEPT SPACE AT NGEE ANN CITY (NOT THE STATE OF SINGAPORE FASHION RETAIL TODAY? BY KENG YANG SHUEN
KENG YANG SHUEN
Two months ago, Singapore label Beyond The Vines (BTV) wiped its eponymous Instagram account slate clean. The reason? It was about to rebrand from a popular ready-to-wear operation (15 stores in Singapore and around the region) into what founders Rebecca Ting and Daniel Chew call a full-fledged creative studio. Key among this overhaul of sorts is a concept store that opened last month at Ngee Ann City offering the brand’s ever-expanding universe that now includes a new permanent menswear range alongside its well-loved womenswear as well as lifestyle products (think homeware, outdoor and tech accessories).

Of late, there seems to be a trend that sees increasingly more fashion labels branching out into lifestyle sectors. Bring this up to Ting and Chew however and the husband-and-wife duo counter that the same could be said of the inverse. Besides which, relaxed, fuss-free wares with a distinct design quality – meant to get busy professionals and creative types through the day – have always been at the heart of the brand. It’s only natural then that as it evolves (it turns five this year), that that same approach towards designing extends into all aspects of living.

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LOCAL LABEL BEYOND THE VINES HAS COME A LONG WAY SINCE ITS TO MENTION STORES IN FIVE COUNTRIES), IT’S THE ARCHETYPE OF A, ’ INCEPTION FIVE YEARS AGO. WITH AN EXTENSIVE REBRANDING IN SINGAPORE FASHION LABEL MADE GOOD. SO WHO BETTER TO DISCUSS. PROCESS AND A NEWLY OPENED CONCEPT SPACE AT NGEE ANN CITY (NOT THE STATE OF SINGAPORE FASHION RETAIL TODAY? BY KENG YANG SHUEN

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On the up

FROM AN IRANIAN MILLINER CRAFTING FANTASTICAL HATS THAT RESEMBLE SCULPTURE TO A GENDER-FLUID HONG KONG LABEL CHALLENGING TRADITIONAL NOTIONS OF MASCULINITY, THE SEVEN EMERGING BRANDS FEATURED HERE SHARE ONE THING IN COMMON: FOUNDERS WITH ROOTS IN ASIA – AND BOLD IDEAS THAT THE WORLD SHOULD KNOW ABOUT. KENG YANG SHUEN REPORTS.

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What does it mean to be asian? That question is so large, so vast, that answering it is nearly impossible. The truth is that Singaporeans today straddle multiple cultural identities: our own ethnic heritage, our place in the world as global citizens and our communal sense of a nation. So instead of trying to find an unattainable answer, we went in search of the particular. Image-making has the power of influencing how we view, imagine and define ourselves. Through their work and research, the three Singapore image-makers we spoke to here each deal with specific perspectives of asian-ness. All start unsurprisingly from some place (or something) personal then delve into bigger, more mercurial ideas: the dominance of eurocentric beauty ideals; the challenge of conceiving and creating a postcolonial identity; the fragility of heritage and history in a modern world. And in doing so, each offers a different viewpoint on what it means and looks like to be asian. Gordon NG goes in for a close-up.

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Asia's True Top Models

A diversity report on the fall/winter 2020 runway season by the fashion spot – drawn from 194 shows that took place in the four major fashion week cities – found that 40.6 per cent of models cast were people of colour. In contrast, when the popular online portal started tallying diversity reports five years ago with the spring/summer 2015 season, that figure was 17 per cent. It’s commendable change, some might say – one that reflects the fashion industry’s growing interest in and recognition of the importance of representing a wide range of faces and ethnicities. Based in different parts of asia, the three modelling agencies featured here aren’t just vital players in this revolution; they’re expanding the conversation by championing specifically models from home. Gordon NG finds out how they’re changing the look and perceptions of Asian beauty.

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The Power Of Joy

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Modern Talking

In 2019, Louis Vuitton introduced its Artycapucines project, which invites leading international artists to reimagine its Capucines tote – named after the Parisian street on which the brand opened its first boutique and known for its extensive craftsmanship. For the second edition – limited to 200 pieces worldwide per design – hitting selected stores (including the one here at Ngee Ann City) on oct 30, the Maison Ropes in for the first time two asian names: Xinjiang-born Zhao Zhao and Beijinger Liu Wei. Here, an exclusive with these chinese luminaries on their art and how they’ve transformed an artisanal handbag into a true objet d’art. Keng Yang Shuen reports.

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Fortune Favours The Boh

Fashion PR, writing, modelling – bohan qiu has tried his hand at all of them. In a way, the Shenzhen-born 26-year-old exemplifies the contemporary fashion multi-hyphenate with his latest turn being the entrepreneur behind boh project, a PR and digital content agency based in Shanghai. Founded last year, the company is already staking a claim in the chinese fashion scene, counting clients that range from giants (calvin klein, selfridges) to emerging names. Among the latter is the fashion and art presentation platform Xcommons, which made global headlines in march for producing a virtual reality presentation for the chinese labels Xu Zhi, Andrea Jiapei Li and Roderic Wong, and garnering over 4.8 million visits within the first day. So who better to speak to for insights into the fascinating, fast-moving and growing chinese fashion industry?

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