Image: Ralph’s, Saint-Germain, Paris
Image: Capsule Collection by Juliette
One of Singapore's biggest shopping events, Glamorous Giving 10, is coming up next week: in its 10th edition, on September 12 to 13, shoppers will find some of the best bargains of up to 80% off from more than 50 Singapore-based designers and retailers. Every edition, we’re increasingly impressed by new brands that come to showcase their collections as well as the brands that make a regular appearance. In the lead up to this shopping extravaganza, we spoke to a few of the regular brands about why they love being part of #GlamorousGiving and why they think you should attend.
‘Whatever’ t-shirt from the limited edition series in support of AIDHA
Capsule Collection by Juliette
“Being at GG is always great fun! It is usually the first fair after the summer and it is always very nice to have this opportunity to meet and chat with a lot of people you know. Being at Glamorous Giving is a great honor as I am happy and proud to support UN women. This year, Glamorous Giving will be a fantastic opportunity for us as we will also introduce our new charity project which is a collection of 4 t-shirts in limited edition to support AIDHA, a Singapore based association helping female domestic workers achieve economic independence through financial education. Being at Glamorous Giving is fantastic to find all the brand you love with the best deals!” Juliette Capillaire
Stones That Rock
“As the event organisers, we love Glamorous Giving on so many levels. Firstly we are very proud to support the work of the Singapore Committee for UN Women via fundraising. We are also able to support their work by helping raise their profile and spread the message of their work across Singapore and the region. The event is also a great opportunity to provide an avenue for small businesses to clear stock – something which can be difficult and costly – to make way for new collections. Lastly, Glamorous Giving enables us to interact directly with our customers. We love bringing the community together – shoppers and vendors – to create a fun, highly anticipated event twice per year.” Leah Lambert
‘Meredith Blue’ stone necklace with detachable pendant
Just Gaya’s namesake collection of accessories
“As a brand owner and shopper, I look forward to Glamorous Giving twice a year. As a brand owner, we are able to contribute to the Singapore Committee for UN Women, which ultimately empowers women across the region and as a shopper, I benefit from the great sales offered by each brand. The September edition is a great time to start early Christmas shopping too.” Gaya Subra
“Glamorous Giving has become the talk of the town. Ladies look forward to it, as it’s by far the most relaxed and fun fair in the calendar. Shoppers come with full purses looking to snap up fantastic bargains and to catch up with their friends. Besides selling past collection pieces, for this edition of Glamorous Giving, I have especially sourced new designs – so my customers are in for a real treat. The opening night is always great fun – lots of bubbles and chatter – definitely looking forward to it!” Dominique Bunn
Tie dye short frill dress
‘French Sole’ Love Heart Poodle loafer
Sole 2 Sole
Cote and Badt
“Glamorous Giving is an opportunity for Cote and Badt to bring to our loyal and to our new customers our Spanish espadrilles at incredible prices! A broad range of styles and sizes to give you ample choice and bring home a pair… or more! Join us for these 2 days of a fantastic atmosphere with fabulous vendors and their exceptional offers. And the best is yet to come… we support UN Women!” Samira
‘Zen’ flat espadrilles crafted in soft leather and jute with rubber sole
Leather Tassel Wallets
Desti Saint Handbags
“I love participating in Glamorous Giving because of its amazing vibe and energy and of course because I know that we’re all supporting a fantastic cause. I’ve been part of the event from the beginning and I’ve loved watching it grow and become more and more popular as shoppers realise that there are genuine bargains to be had. After participating for so many years, I feel like I know so many of the brands and I always enjoy the community atmosphere and the way everyone is there to enjoy themselves.” Desti Saint
“I love participating in Glamorous Giving because of the positive and good atmosphere at the event. It’s also a good opportunity to catch up, support and shop bargains from independent local vendors. I especially enjoy meeting up with customers as it’s a chance to introduce my brand and get people to try on African prints and feel the fabrics. Last but not least Glamorous Giving supports a good cause, Singapore Committee for UN Women, which raises awareness and funding for women and girls who are seeking economic independence, leadership development and a life free from violence and abuse. I always look forward to Glamorous Giving as it’s a fun and enjoyable event for everyone!” Theresa
Setting up the house as a newlywed prompted founder of Living DNA (formerly Departures & Arrivals), Denise Taojo Kaur, to open a shop with the concept of a well-travelled home in 2015. After a few years in the business of retail, Denise felt she wanted to focus on the mindfulness aspect of the collections she creates and curates. With a new brand and store location, Living DNA takes pride in telling the stories of the pieces being made by real people, and the love and attention that goes into them. Denise is a firm believer in consciousness and wants us all to feel a deeper connection with what we buy, affordably. Here we chat with Denise about her journey as a retailer.
How did you get started in retail?
I was once in a banking job. Setting up the house as a newlywed couple, my husband and I struggled to find home furnishing that’s carefully designed, made with substance and yet affordable. So we made use of frequent business trips to stuff our suitcases with unique pieces. It sparked the idea of opening an online store for conscious design lovers like us.
What inspired you to relaunch your brand?
I enjoy the multicultural provenance of our rugs and homeware, and the Departures & Arrivals concept of a well-travelled home will continue to be our signature look. But I felt a stronger need to emphasize the mindfulness aspect of our collection. This is what the new brand Living DNA is all about. We tell the story of our pieces being made by real people, and the love and attention that goes into it. Being conscious of what we consume and buy creates more joy.
If asked to describe your store to someone unfamiliar with it, what would you say?
Homeware with soul and substance. Inspired by culture, but easily matched with the modern home.
What makes your store unique?
The way we apply modern colours on traditional handiwork. Our homeware comes from all over the world, yet they don’t look like a typical tourist souvenirs. They are elevated pieces. They blend harmoniously with your modern furniture.
We don’t stop at looks. The piece has to be produced in a special method or with a special material. Objects with stories are enjoyed for a longer time. Buying consciously hones us to live mindfully.
Who are your customers?
People come to us when they want something unique yet goes beyond trends. They’re the kind of people who aspire to live mindfully by careful lifestyle choices.
You now focus purely on rugs and homewares. Can you tell us a bit about the brands you curate? And why?
Since our boutique first opened in 2015, we often encounter customers who want a rug but don’t know how to select one. They share with us they’re looking for something extraordinary at the same time reasonably priced. And then they always end up going home happy with one (or more) DNA rug. That’s when we realized we could really offer people a valuable service by being their one-stop rug shop, complemented with homeware not found anywhere else.
What are your best selling products?
Rugs definitely, including the low maintenance bath carpets. Next bestselling are the Japanese clocks. They embody the Japanese perfectionism and love for natural materials.
Where do you look for inspiration?
Travel! I am blown away by traditional craft especially in fabrics, everyday practical objects and even food preparation. I get a high from stumbling upon colour combinations that challenge my conventions. Elements of architecture like tiles, doors and windows are a wealth of patterns. As I move across climates, I pay attention to the vegetation and changing landscape. When I like a particular hotel, restaurant or house, I try to understand what makes it different and make a mental note of it.
How has the Internet/digital marketing impacted your business?
Thanks to the growing awareness of how products are being made and the shareability of information on social media, people are now more conscious than ever that their buying choices count. It started with fashion and beauty, now with homeware as well people are beginning to understand why natural materials and earth-friendly production methods are not cheap but are the only way forward.
What do you think the future holds for your store and shopping in Singapore?
Craft will endure. The faster our technological advances will be, the more we will crave for authenticity, for the human connection. Sustainable materials will not just be a trend, it will be a necessary way of living. We’re excited because these are the very values we stand for.
If you could give one piece of advice to the youth, or someone starting out in their career, what would you say?
Nurture all your interests, even though they don’t seem to connect at first. Once they do, you become a truly unique creative force. Every experience in life builds you up for the next – no experience ever goes to waste.
All images supplied by Swantribune
Sometimes something creative speaks to you more than the usual. You find yourself craving to know more about the subject. How you gather more knowledge can vary, but whichever path you choose you find you still want to know more. This is what happened when I came across SWANTRIBUNE. You could say that the colourful souvenir illustrations of DIVYA AUORA ZEISS and DANIEL ARON COHEN touched me in a particularly profound way; I instantly adored the manner in which the art expressed their passion for the bygone era of travel and travel etiquette. Here, Divya opens up about their work, style and influences.
When did you become interested in art?
I can’t say I was ever interested in art itself, I never studied art. But I always needed beauty to surround me and everything that was beautiful became a form of art. I love colours, therefore, I love Matisse, but I stand before his paintings with a naive eye, very innocent to his techniques, motives, and methods. I am interested in beauty and the effect it has on the individual.
What was your first art love?
Actually, literature was my first love. The way in which words could compose a painting in my imagination was extremely powerful. I began to write about a world I visioned and later I found a way in which I could draw that same world that once I could only express in my diary as words.
What is your signature style?
Colour and little people within a setting.
How did it come about?
I never dared to draw before so I would collect images and cut them out to then make a collage, which came as close as possible to the idea I had in my mind.
Can you tell us a bit about your artistic process?
I went to Jaipur to do an internship in Manglam arts. I liked the idea of learning the art of hand block prints. Somehow I never entered the block print room and remained in the design compartment where day after day I played with watercolours. Within the month I drew and felt the most creative I had ever felt. I owe that awakening to Jaipur.
What material do you work with?
I began drawing sketches using watercolours in my travel diary. My partner Daniel encouraged me, believed in the style I was developing and pushed me to learn how to draw digitally. So my illustrations could be done on both paper and iPad.
What do you do when you get the artist’s equivalent of writer’s block?
I accept it and focus my attention on other things. There is no need to pressure oneself. I don’t associate myself with my art, more like being an instrument. In Indian culture, the Deity Saraswati is the Goddess who bestows creativity on one. Her blessings turn into art and beauty, we are only instruments. So if I no longer feel creative I completely surrender that if it needs to it will come again.
What are your creative influences?
I am very inspired by the past, especially the bygone era of travel and travel etiquette. Hotel lobbies and the way ladies and gentlemen dressed for breakfast and dinner. There’s a mist to that world that has somehow dissolved now, and so I like to wander to the past for inspiration when it comes to fashion and settings.
What’s next for you?
A great work of art should be spontaneous and for oneself.
THE GUCCI CLASSROOM
Perhaps had I worn beautiful clothes in the classroom,
I would have learnt to be a lady.
Had there been flora and a Cheetah,
I would have learnt to have an imagination.
Had I been able to see the sky I would have caught all the shooting stars and fulfilled my dreams.
I wore the muse of another man,
because in Venice the muse was never I
and the man always another.
A BABYHOOD OF DEITIES
I had a babyhood of deities,
and I was told they all lived within my body,
which they said was a temple.
So I corrected them and said,” no its a lobby”
CENOBIO DEI DOGI
I got over my Adolescent sadness when I found out about karma, that perhaps I was still suffering from the spoils of my last life and he was gallant because of his.
So we became wizards and hid in pink houses on the Riviera.