Ingeborg van der Hoek, Elements Concept

Meet the Indonesian furniture brand that is quickly making a mark in Singapore due to its affordable elegant tropical-style pieces. We chat with co-owner of ELEMENTS CONCEPT, Ingeborg Van Der Hoek, about what inspired the team to launch in Singapore, a new collection, and the exciting times that lie ahead for this sustainable brand.

Ingeborg van der Hoek | Elements Concept | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

When Ingeborg van der Hoek walked into one of Elements Concept’s Jakarta stores in June 2016, she immediately fell in love with the brand. Who can resist a standout collection of hand-woven homewares and furniture made with natural materials by talented craftsmen and women?

Elements Concept was founded in 2015 by Dutch designer Bastiaan Spil. The designer – who grew up in Indonesia – is no novice, coming from a family who has been making furniture and home accessories for many popular stores for over 30 years. Bastiaan, together with his team, is heavily involved in the design process and manages everything from sourcing raw materials to producing the pieces in his factories and workshops.

Today, Elements Concept has two stores in Indonesia, outfits cafes, restaurants, hotels and beach clubs all over Indonesia and exports products and franchises its concept to Europe, the US, Japan and Australia.

The team felt that Singapore could use a high quality, natural furniture brand that ties in with its yearlong tropical vibes. It didn’t take long before Ingeborg – who currently resides in Singapore – became the co-owner of Elements Concept.

Ingeborg tells us all about the positive reception the brand has received as she runs the Singapore branch and shares her all-time favourite pieces as well as new additions to look out for from the latest collection.

How did the Elements Concept come about?

The brand was founded in 2015 by Bastiaan Spil. Bastiaan is a Dutch designer who grew up in Indonesia. His parents moved there 30 years ago to start a furniture workshop with local craftsmen. Since then, they have been making furniture and home accessories for stores all over the world, including two of the most popular furniture and home decor stores in The Netherlands. In 2015, Bastiaan started his own brand under the name Elements Concept from this workshop, creating his own designs.

Who is behind Elements Concept and what roles do they play?

First of all, our talented craftsmen and -women of course! They are the ones making the fabulous pieces, all by hand. Then there is Bastiaan Spil. Bastiaan studied at the Art Academy and Economics & Law in The Netherlands before returning to Indonesia to use what he had learned to set up Elements Concept. Bastiaan designs the furniture and home accessories, runs the business (including two stores) in Indonesia, manages commercial projects (like hotels & restaurants) and exports to countries all over the world.

I am co-owner of the brand in Singapore. I run the Singapore branch, manage all sales & marketing, operations and projects. Before collaborating with Bastiaan I ran a tiny furniture business in Singapore, doing mainly custom made items on a very small scale.

How did you decide to be a part of Elements Concept?

In June 2016, after a tip from a friend in Singapore, I walked into one of the Elements Concept stores in Jakarta and immediately fell in love with the brand. I loved the natural feel of it, the tropical touch and just really gorgeous designs. Bastiaan and I met up for a coffee and decided there and then to work together.

Ingeborg van der Hoek, Elements Concept | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

Founder, Bastiaan Spil

"I walked into one of the Elements Concept stores in Jakarta and immediately fell in love with the brand. I loved the natural feel of it, the tropical touch and just really gorgeous designs. Bastiaan (the founder of Elements Concept) and I met up for a coffee and decided there and then to work together."

Ingeborg van der Hoek, Elements Concept | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

Elements Concept’s Jakarta store

What inspired the team to launch in Singapore?

We really felt that Singapore could use a high quality, natural furniture brand with a tropical vibe that is quite easy on the wallet.

Have you faced any challenges while launching the business in Singapore?

Up until now, it’s going quite smooth actually…

All items are made by craftsmen in your factories and workshops. How does this play a part in your design philosophy?

Yes, all items are handmade in our own workshop, which gives every single piece its own character. Though, a lot of the smaller rattan pieces are braided by craftsmen and –women at their homes and are collected once a week. This way they can stay with their families and earn a living at the same time.

The team is heavily involved in the design process. Tell us more about it from concept to finished product.

We keep our designs as close to nature as possible, using natural materials we source ourselves – like sustainable teak, rattan, bamboo, marble and brass – and authentic techniques. Good craftsmanship and only the best materials form the base for all our designs. We aim to finish a collection every three months, that’s the time it takes to create a new collection.

Elements Concept also furnishes many cafes, restaurants, hotels and beach clubs in Indonesia. How do you choose these projects/collaborations?

Correct, we are really proud of the projects we have done in Indonesia and actually we are also working on a few in Singapore as well. In these projects, we work together with interior designers who bring in a lot of creative ideas.

Ingeborg van der Hoek | Elements Concept | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa
Ingeborg van der Hoek | Elements Concept | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

"My old time favourite is the Paul Arm Chair, which was originally designed as part of our project for the Katamama Hotel (Potato Head Group) in Seminyak, Bali. Or is it the Straw Parasol…? Or the Palm Lantern…? Or the huge rattan pendant lamps…? So hard to choose!"

What are some highlights the brand has seen recently?

The launch in Singapore and the way the brand is welcomed here is a huge highlight. Also the collaboration within The Attaby Collective is something we’re really excited about.

Tell us about the collection. Do you have a favourite piece? Any exciting pieces/collections coming down the pipeline?

After a very successful launch of Elements Concept in Singapore in February of this year, it’s time to introduce the second collection to our enthusiastic customers in the little Red Dot in June. With this second collection, we continue to build on Elements Concepts principles of high-quality, beautifully handcrafted furniture and home decor made of the best materials in up-to-date designs for a price that doesn’t hurt your wallet too much.

New in this collection is the addition of a butler trolley, a perfect eye catcher in your interior. And big trendy plant pots to bring the green jungle in your house. Furthermore, Elements Concept added a wider variety of cabinets, dining tables, lounge chairs, sofas and accessories.

But my old time favourite is the Paul Arm Chair, which was originally designed as part of our project for the Katamama Hotel (Potato Head Group) in Seminyak, Bali. Or is it the Straw Parasol…? Or the Palm Lantern…? Or the huge rattan pendant lamps…? So hard to choose ; )

There are also some things we make just because we think it is cool. Like our unique Volkswagen van from the sixties completely covered in rattan. We are now working on a boat and in the process of building an Elements Villa in Lombok, which will function as a small retreat to relax and inspire.

Elements Concept is now available at TheAC (The Attaby Collective). How did this collaboration come to be?

I met the founder of TheAC, Claire Chahil (also the founder of the fashion brand Attaby), through a friend. Claire told me about her plans to collaborate with different independent brands to open a boutique department store where customers can discover a wide range of products from different brands. That sounded like a marvellous plan.

What can visitors expect to see in the store?

A thoughtfully curated selection of independent brands offering unique designs from women’s, men’s and kids’ fashion, active wear and jewellery to furniture and home accessories.

You can read more about TheAC here.

Shop The Collection

Coffee Chair in Black | Ingeborg van der Hoek, Elements Concept | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

Elements Concept

Coffee Chair in Black

Butler Trolley | Ingeborg van der Hoek, Elements Concept | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

Elements Concept

Butler Trolley

Summer Baskets | Ingeborg van der Hoek, Elements Concept | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

Elements Concept

Summer Baskets

Moambique Pot TerraII | Ingeborg van der Hoek, Elements Concept | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

Elements Concept

Moambique Pot TerraII

Elements Concept is available at TheAC | 420 Joo Chiat Road Singapore 427641 and at these locations in Jakarta.

All images courtesy of Ingeborg Van Der Hoek.

Shopping in Tai Hang

 | Shopping in Tai Hang | Travelshopa

Image: Unar Coffee Company, @dicksonchanmusic

For those who have been to Hong Kong, you’ll notice that this modern metropolis never sleeps. So if you need a break from the frenzy – your hotel room does not count – make a beeline for Tai Hang, a quaint little neighbourhood just outside Causeway Bay. The street side stalls sell everything from temple offerings – popular during the UNESCO-listed Fire Dragon Festival every September – to organic food, French pastries, bakeries and fresh brews from the popular cool kid hangout, Unar Coffee Company.

A slew of in-the-know boutiques, vintage and local designer shops have recently taken over this emerging precinct, making Tai Hang a one-stop destination for all. Read on to know more about the boutiques we found in this guide to shopping in Tai Hang.

 


 

Feelsogood Interior Design

All things vintage

4 Second Lane, Tai Hang

Don’t let Feelsogood Interior’s simple storefront fool you. Once you enter, you will immediately be drawn to the eclectic mix of furniture, home accessories and decorative items in the store. An amalgam of pendant lights, taxidermy, trinkets and oddities sit in the mix. The founders of Feelsogood also engage in interior design, space planning and project management services for restaurants, boutiques and offices. If you have a liking for all things vintage, this is just the shop for you.

Feelsogood | Shopping in Tai Hang | Travelshopa
Feelsogood | Shopping in Tai Hang | Travelshopa

 

Hysan Place

Over 120 labels including brands from Japan and Korea

500 Hennessy Road, Causeway Bay

Hipness is no longer just for the fashion elite thanks to Hysan Place,. Located in the heart of Causeway Bay, just minutes away from Tai Hang is Hysan Place, a mall that showcases an enviable selection of nearly 120 most sought-after international brand boutiques spanning over 17 floors. Expect a bevy of Korean and Japanese labels in this mix.

 


 

Incredible Shop

Casual Menswear and gender-neutral styles

Shop A2, G/F, Kanfield Mansion, 44-46 Sun Chun Street, Causeway Bay

A range of menswear and gender-neutral fashion from renowned streetwear brands awaits you at the Incredible Shop. Collections range from casual styles like plain and graphic shirts to fashion accessories like backpacks, caps, belts, wallets and sneakers. Expect to see brands like Good On, Lady White Co., Kurry, Minotaur, The Real McCoy’s and more.

Incredible Shop | Shopping in Tai Hang | Travelshopa


 

Ink

Cutting edge men’s fashion

2A-2B Hyde Park Mansion 53 Paterson Street, Causeway Bay

Ink was established with the goal of offering a unique retail venue that specialises in cutting-edge and staunchly anti-commercial labels. The team has travelled the world to curate men’s clothing of the highest standards for the Hong Kong market. You will mostly find their apparel to be in whites, blacks and greys.

Inkclothing | Shopping in Tai Hang | Travelshopa
Inkclothing | Shopping in Tai Hang | Travelshopa

 

Microwave

Best of Japanese street style

G/F, 7 School Street, Tai Hang Causeway Bay

Created for Harajuku lovers, Microwave is a stylish thrift shop that also carries a curated collection of women’s fashion from independent designers like Andrea Crews, Vinti Andrews, Noki, and Potto – amongst others. The apparel in this boutique is perfect for those who have a liking for Japanese street style with inklings of 80’s fashion. Think patched denim jackets, graphic print shirts and holographic tops and bottoms.

Microwave | Shopping in Tai Hang | Travelshopa
Microwave | Shopping in Tai Hang | Travelshopa

 

Volume One

Hybrid fashion accessories shop and bakery

30 Tai Hang Tsuen Street

We can’t think of anyone who’d say no to a quick bite while shopping for his or her favourite items. So it’s no surprise that this hybrid bakery and fashion accessories shop is a big hit. After scouring for your favourite jewellery designers by Hong Kong designer Shannam – and working out an appetite – treat yourself to a pot of tea and some delectable baked goodies.

 


 

Shopping in Tai Hang

Sleek Masculine

The recently restored THE WAREHOUSE HOTEL was originally built in 1895 along the Singapore River. Through thoughtful partnerships and story telling of new makers, creators & do-ers, this boutique hotel aims to put a spotlight on heritage and local culture. This mix of purpose and creativity coupled with a SLEEK MASCULINE aesthetic make it a place we’d like to rest our head in The Lion City.

Get The Look

Matte Black Hanging Planter | Millie Archer | Sleek Masculine | The Warehouse Hotel | Dream Spaces | Travelshopa

Millie Archer

Matte Black Hanging Planter

Navarra Desk | Proof Living | Gentleman's Crib | Sleek Masculine | Dream Spaces | Travelshopa

Proof Living

Navarra Desk

Personalised Pen Pot | Gifts Less Ordinary | Sleek Masculine | The Warehouse Hotel | Dream Spaces | Travelshopa

Gifts Less Ordinary

Personalised Pen Pot

Portland Grey Rug | Departures & Arrivals | Sleek Masculine | The Warehouse Hotel | Dream Spaces | Travelshopa

Departures & Arrivals

Portland Grey Rug

My Own Chair by Lassen | Vanilla Home | Sleek Masculine | The Warehouse Hotel | Dream Spaces | Travelshopa

Vanilla Home

My Own Chair by Lassen

Prato Nesting Coffee Table | Bowerbird Home | Sleek Masculine | The Warehouse Hotel | Dream Spaces | Travelshopa

Bowerbird Home Hong Kong

Prato Nesting Coffee Table

Ethel Hour Glass | Maison Curio | Sleek Masculine | The Warehouse Hotel | Dream Spaces | Travelshopa

Maison Curio

Ethel Hour Glass

Sleek Masculine | The Warehouse Hotel | Dream Spaces | Travelshopa
Sleek Masculine | The Warehouse Hotel | Dream Spaces | Travelshopa
Sleek Masculine | The Warehouse Hotel | Dream Spaces | Travelshopa

Men’s Fashion in Melbourne

Oscar Hunt | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa

Image: Oscar Hunt

In a fashion capital like Melbourne, even men are spoilt for choice when it comes to shopping. Men’s fashion in Melbourne is known to have a diverse mix of brands offering standout designs for all occasions and seasons. You’ll come across everything from gender fluid to dapper styles, go back to basics with classics and experiment with bold prints. The choices are endless. We suss out the men’s fashion brands that have caught our eye in this guide to Men’s Fashion in Melbourne.

 


 

Hham

A brand that blurs the lines between fashion and philanthropy

Available online.

We’re pretty sure it’s impossible to be nothing buy happy when you’re donning a piece of accessory that gives back to the society. That’s how you would feel at Hham, a luxury men’s fashion accessory label that dedicates 100% of net profits to grassroots humanitarian charities across the globe. The ethically made accessories are not too shabby as well. You’ll find a collection of ties, bow ties and pocket squares made with luxurious silk, wool, cashmere, linen, velvet and cotton fabrics, clad in a slew of assorted patterns and colours.

Hham | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa


 

Hew

Constantly collaborates with local artists for fresh designs

Shop 229, South Melbourne Market 322-326 Coventry St VIC 3205 | 99 Brunswick St Fitzroy VIC 3065

We doubt there’s ever a dull day at Hew. Perhaps it’s the mix of vibrant prints or the infectious energy in the boutique. Whichever it is, we love it. Select from a wide range of fresh colours to bold prints – think florals, geometric patterns, and digital prints – made with high-quality fabrics. Hew also works collaboratively with local fashion designers and artists to curate the aesthetics of the textiles. The next time you purchase a garment from Hew, look out for the name of the respective designer on the swing tag.

Hew | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa

Hew | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa Left image: Garret McNamara

 


 

Jude

Gender-neutral and utilitarian-inspired styles

252 Johnston St, Fitzroy VIC 3065

Helmed by Jude Ng, JUDE is a contemporary androgynous label that is inspired by an offbeat use of shape, colour, texture – thanks to Ng’s experiences as a painter – and unexpected combinations of materials. Shop a range of tops, shirts, coats, vests, pants and jackets in utilitarian-inspired styles and made with natural fibres and rare vintage materials. This is comfort dressing at its most luxurious.

Jude | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa
Jude | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa

 

Mr Simple

Simple designs in premium fabrics

Shop 206A, Level 2 Melbourne Central, La Trobe St and Swanston St VIC 3000 | Also available at various locations across Australia

It’s back to basics at Mr Simple. But do not be fooled by its name as the pieces here are constructed with premium fabrics, such as organic cotton, sustainable hemp and linen. From knitwear to summer shirts, chinos to denim you’ll find something for every season right here. The Mr Simple collection also focuses on cut, fabric and quality where logos and branding are kept to a minimum so your personal style can say it all.

Mr Simple | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa
Mr Simple | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa

 

Oscar Hunt

Comfortable and practical tailoring with a modern cut

Level 3, 43 Hardware Lane, VIC 3000

Founded in 2010, Oscar Hunt has since developed into a leading Australian tailoring house with standout showrooms in Sydney and Melbourne. Need a suit for a special occasion? You know where to go. Made-to-measure suits, shirts and overcoats with distinguishable patterns are individually tailored for you – all in exclusive showrooms with dedicated tailoring workshops with soaring windows, private fitting rooms, and a luxurious bar lounge.

Oscar Hunt | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa
Oscar Hunt | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa

 

Scott Benedictine

Choose your perfect fit

Available at CTF Curated Pop-up till 4 Jun | 260 Collins Street Melbourne, VIC 3000

Another gender fluid label on the list, Scott Benedictine also stands by “slow fashion”. All of Scott Benedictine apparel is individually hand cut and machined in its Melbourne Studio ‘Maison de Benedictine’ where fabrics are carefully selected and pre-washed to obtain the perfect fit and feel.

Scott Benedictine | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa
Scott Benedictine | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa

 

Sires

A family owned business with collections ranging from formal to casual wear

241 Collins St, VIC 3000

This family owned business was established back in 1972 as a factory direct store. Today, Sires has rapidly expanded to 11 locations around Melbourne and Geelong. Sires’ core collection includes suits, trousers, coats and formal shirts but the label has since added a full range of casual wear, accessories and footwear so you can get a complete your outfit at one shop.

Sires Menswear | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa
Sires Menswear | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa

 

Up There Store

A mix of established and emerging labels

Level 1, 15 McKillop St VIC 3000

Up There Store was conceived to provide shoppers with a selection of globally sourced labels. Amongst these labels include established and emerging brands that add a contemporary twist on menswear classics. Expect to find a selection of streetwear, work wear, sportswear, shoes and fashion accessories from brands like 3sixteen, Aprix, Engineered Garments, Maaps, OrSlow, Norse Projects, just to name a few.

Up There Store | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa
Up There Store | Men's Fashion in Melbourne | Travelshopa

 

Men’s Fashion in Melbourne

Three Pieces Every Man Needs in His Summer Work Wardrobe

Summer is here, and temperatures are soaring. It’s time to ditch the suit - when not pitching and in meetings - and embrace a more casual style code within office hours. Here are the three pieces that every man needs in his summer work wardrobe.

A Versatile Blazer

3 Pieces Every Man Needs in His Summer Work Wardrobe | WTW | Travelshopa

Image: Pinterest

Frangipani Shirt (Crane Spotting) | Hanway | Nail Office Wear for Men | WTW | Travelshopa

Hanway

Frangipani Shirt (Crane Spotting)

The Roman Watch Black Leather | Plain Supplies | Nail Office Wear for Men | WTW | Travelshopa

Plain Supplies

The Roman Watch Black Leather

Baroque Silver Knot Cufflinks | Cufflinks Singapore | Nail Office Wear for Men | WTW | Travelshopa

Cufflinks Singapore

Baroque Silver Knot Cufflinks

Seersucker Blazer in Blue | Second Move | Nail Office Wear for Men | WTW | Travelshopa

Second Move

Seersucker Blazer in Blue

Go Sockless

Alden Longwing Cordovan Blucher in Color 8 975 | Unionmade Goods

Unionmade

Alden Longwing Cordovan Blucher

Dark Brown Belt | Khaki Bros. | Nail Office Wear for Men | WTW | Travelshopa

Khaki Bros.

Dark Brown Belt

Grey Skinny Tie | Ties.Sg | Nail Office Wear for Men | WTW | Travelshopa

Ties.sg

Grey Skinny Tie

Classic Slim Oxford Shirt in Ryan print | Hew | Nail Office Wear for Men | WTW | Travelshopa

Hew

Classic Slim Oxford Shirt in Ryan print

A Lightweight Sweater

3 Pieces Every Man Needs in His Summer Work Wardrobe | WTW | Travelshopa

Image: The Idle Man

C.O.F. Studio M1 Slim Black Pants | AB Fits | Nail Office Wear for Men | WTW | Travelshopa

AB Fits

C.O.F. Studio M1 Slim Black Pants

The Mark Boot in Flint Oiled Nubuck | Taylor Stitch | Nail Office Wear for Men | WTW | Travelshopa

Taylor Stitch

The Mark Boot in Flint Oiled Nubuck

Delano Messenger | Marketplays | Nail Office Wear for Men | WTW | Travelshopa

Marketplays

Delano Messenger

Reigning Champ Gray Crewneck Twill Terry Sweatshirt | Wittmore | Nail Office Wear for Men | WTW | Travelshopa

Wittmore

Reigning Champ Gray Crewneck Twill Terry Sweatshirt

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