Leah Lambert, founder of Singapore's fashion, accessories and homewares clearance sale event, Glamorous Giving, shares how it has evolved over the years, the reasons behind the event’s massive success; and what to look forward to as it takes on a bigger location and more brands than ever.
Who would have thought a clearance sale would emerge as one of Singapore’s most glamorous charity shopping events? Probably not Leah, who organised the first Glamorous Giving event in January 2014 – with just 15 brands. Today, the founder of Singapore-based jewellery label Stones that Rock, has a waiting list of companies wanting to participate in the clearance sale.
Back for its seventh edition on February 14 and 15, 2017, Glamorous Giving will host some of Singapore’s top independent local designers and boutiques. Shoppers will be able to snag great deals at irresistible prices – end of line, end of season and sample stock at up to 70% off and starting as low as $5. The brands will be selling their products in support of the Singapore Committee for UN Women.
We sat down with Leah to learn all about the new location at The Ballroom at Orchard Parade Hotel, some highlights and the brands to look forward to – plus some tips on how to make the most out of attending Glamorous Giving.
Let’s go back to the beginning. How did the idea behind Glamorous Giving come about?
Stones that Rock has always organised small clearance sales. At the end of 2013, we decided to make our sale bigger and promote it more broadly. At the same time, we thought it would be a fantastic idea to use the event as an opportunity to raise money for a cause we believe in and so began our partnership with the Singapore Committee for UN Women.
When did you decide to organise this event?
The first Glamorous Giving was held in January 2014 at a Black and White house in Ridley Park with the owner kindly agreeing to open her home to 15 brands and hundreds of bargain-hungry strangers. In organising the first event, we reached out to Renee Lodens, the Founder of Travelshopa to increase awareness of the event.
GG has seen a successful 3 years. Why do you think the event has been such a huge success?
I am very proud of the way the event has grown and become so popular with customers and vendors alike. I believe there are several reasons for this: firstly we raise money for an organisation that does immensely important work. We are very proud of our association with the Singapore Committee for UN Woman and clearly, people are happy to support such a worthwhile cause.
Secondly, reducing surplus stock can be a problem for small businesses, particularly in a limited market like Singapore. By creating a low cost of entry event for brands to sell their products, the brands, in turn, are able to offer bargain prices before they release their new collections.
Thirdly, the atmosphere is always fun and festive as it’s usually the first sale event for many vendors and shoppers after the big Christmas and summer holidays – so people are very happy to see one another and catch up.
Do you see a difference between the first and latest edition? If so, how has the event changed over the years?
After the success of the first GG, we moved the event to the Hollandse Club and doubled the number of vendors. We were able to offer a greater spread of brands and bargains, which meant shoppers really started to take notice of the event and even started planning their shopping around it, for example buying in September for Christmas.
Vendors started to notice us and we began to get enquiries from brands wanting to participate. Now we have a waiting list of companies wanting to join us. We are also being approached by organisations wanting to be associated with the event, which in turn has allowed us to grow and reach more potential shoppers.
GG has been in support of the Singapore Committee for UN Women. How has the organisation benefitted from GG over the years?
Besides benefitting from the donation we give them after each event, which further funds the invaluable work they are doing with leadership development, economic independence, and helping women live lives free from violence and abuse, I think UN Women has benefitted from an increase in awareness across new segments of the population as well as an increase in membership.
Representatives attend each event and have the opportunity to talk to shoppers about the work the Committee does which encourages new membership.
The atmosphere is always fun and festive as it’s usually the first sale event for many vendors and shoppers after the big Christmas and summer holidays. People are very happy to see one another and catch up.
GG has moved to a new location at The Ballroom at Orchard Parade Hotel. Tell us about the new location.
After five fantastic GG events at the Hollandse Club, we thought it was time to grow the event and bring it “downtown” to Orchard Rd, hence the move to the newly renovated Ballroom at the Orchard Parade Hotel.
The increase in space has meant we have been able to invite another 20 vendors to join us, which has broadened the mix so we now offer a really eclectic range of brands. The Hotel has also come on board as a sponsor, which we are delighted about, together with our other sponsors, Travelshopa, Expat Living, TTG Wines and Urban Remedy Asia.
What are some highlights of the upcoming seventh edition?
The opening night falls on Valentine’s Day, so we hope shoppers will kick off their evening with a quick “stop and shop” at Glamorous Giving where they can enjoy complimentary wine from our wine sponsor TTG Wines and canapés.
We’ll have great offers from our marketing partner Urban Remedy, free magazines from Expat Living and a host of brilliant bargains. Prices will start from $5 and many brands will be discounted by up to 70%.
What are some brands shoppers should look forward to?
It’s very difficult to choose as we are represented by so many wonderful brands but some of the crowd favourites are: Ria Shoes Menorca, Shiva designs Bespoke, Simply Silk, Desti Saint Handbags, Inzone5 and of course, Stones that Rock.
I know shoppers are going to really enjoy some of our newest partners including Bohemian, Base Athletica, Fair Price Antiques, Hacienda Blue and Anna Rainn.
Any advice for first-time attendees?
1. Save-the-date & clear your diary
2. Come early
3. Take your time
4. Bring cash
5. Bring a big bag
6. Make a list of all your favourite brands so you don’t forget to visit them