When it comes to shopping for fashion in Singapore, it’s normal to take the safe option and hit the mass chain brands on Orchard Road. And while this might feel faster and easier, it can be nice to find something different instead – particularly if you’re dressing for a special occasion. We’re fortunate to have a growing pool of talented local designers and Singapore-based labels, but tracking down their (surprisingly affordable) collections can be tricky. To give you a stylish hand and steer you towards fabulous local designers, we’ve rounded up a big list of our favourite homegrown brands – from casual wear to handmade jewellery.
Capsule Collection by Juliette
Juliette is a true Parisian girl, a French fashion designer reaching to all corners of the globe for conscious inspiration, and a mother of two. She couldn’t find what she wanted for that professional-yet-versatile, elegant-yet-easy-to-wear outfit, so she designed it herself! First came her all-time favourite – and now signature outfit and best seller – the jumpsuit. Then came dresses, skirts, trousers, playsuits and tops. And they all maintain the focus of being timeless slow fashion in natural fabrics and ethically produced.
As a working mum, Juliette knows exactly what it means to juggle a busy schedule! So, she wanted to create clothes for her friends and all women like her who are trying to do, be and feel their best in their hectic everyday lives.
Shopping at Tiffany’s
Australian-born Tiffany Maughan now has three stores across Singapore, along with her own design collection, Kenz & Kate. Her biggest inspiration comes from travel, and her Kenz & Kate collection reflects that. Whether it’s a jumpsuit, kaftan or cool summer dress, these are flexible styles that can work from day to night, and from shopping to bar hopping.
The Kenz & Kate collection supports sustainability and fair trade, and is ethically produced in India and Bali – it’s made for women by women.
You can also book a Styling Session with Tiffany. She can help you find the perfect outfits to wear every day of the week, plus the right look for that special holiday, birthday party, cocktail event, destination wedding, prom or lazy Sunday brunch.
Clothing that is considerate of Singapore’s perennial humid climate is key for founder Michelle Chan. Her focus is on dressing with ease, and offering versatility and breathable comfort – these are the things that help to anchor the brand.
Weekend Sundries’ designs focus on quality, timelessness and comfort, catering to a more conscious way of living. The brand’s approach is that fashion should be helpful rather than harmful, hence its penchant for textiles that are natural, eco-conscious and traceable. So, the materials used are natural, low-impact fabrics personally sourced from textile mills in Japan, along with Lenzing Tencel and other sustainable fabrics that are kind to the environment. The seamstresses are based in Singapore, as well as in various partner workshops in Indonesia and Vietnam.
Weekend Sundries also keeps its collections season-less and in small batches; and it initiates pre-orders as a way of using resources more responsibly and reducing overproduction and waste.
White Ginger – Emma Femminile
White Ginger has been dressing the expat community for nearly ten years. Owner and designer Emma Femminile describes her style as classic with a hint of fun. “I’ve always loved influences from the 70s – jumpsuits, halter necks and bright prints,” she says.
Emma has now relocated to the UK but continues to design, with frequent visits to Bali where the small family-run factory is. She also works closely with Bali Life Foundation, supporting their orphanage and training women at their Women’s Centre to make simple items, thus providing them with a living wage.
White Ginger keeps quantities limited and refreshes the rails, so it’s always worth popping into Tanglin Mall for a look. The staff are all experienced at giving honest styling advice and feedback too, which is wonderful – or you can shop online if you prefer to try something on at home; delivery is free in Singapore.
The Jersey Shop
Gen Woo is British and moved to Singapore in 2016. The fabric she uses at The Jersey Shop is super comfortable “fine knit” lightweight jersey, made from cotton and cotton blends (viscose polyester, linen and elastane). The store has just expanded to include a baby wear line, too, and this season the girls’ wear has been split into two lines – a younger range for ages two to eight years and a tweens’ range for eight to 14.
Gen and her husband are very passionate about sustainability, reduced waste and recycling. They continually strive to make their Bangladesh-based factory as green as possible for large-volume manufacturing; they’ve also created heaps of new projects to reuse leftovers and minimise waste.
Gen’s fashion idol is Stella McCartney – she finds her business model an inspiration, from supply chain transparency and sustainable raw material sourcing, to recycling and leather alternatives.
The Jersey Shop products are available through Zalora – and watch out for the new website!
When the economic crisis affected Turkey in 2018, a 25-year-old Turkish textile business was going to be closed down. But, an idea came to family members based in Singapore and inspired them to rethink things. The idea was to make very comfortable yet fun men’s underwear – pieces with bold prints and quirky messages on the inside for the wearer to look at for a confidence boost or a laugh, or even to show off!
Underwear is easy to manufacture with a small team, and doesn’t require specialised machinery; it’s also easy to ship. So, the business was brought to life here, while all the manufacturing still takes place in Turkey.
The Fancies team have had loads of fun picking prints, colours and slogans, and working on designs for packaging. And the good thing is, because it’s a family business, they can source high-quality materials and keep costs, and therefore prices, low.
Borne out of Danish expat Ondina Montgomery’s passion for textiles and patterns, MAH Collection offers an artistic range of whimsical prints on silk and other lightweight, luxurious fabrics. With a background in interior design, Ondina first started her label with scarves, followed by a wider collection of themed kaftans and ready-to-wear dresses inspired by her travels and everyday life in Singapore.
We particularly love the signature silk cover-ups, which come in a variety of shades and designs. Slip over your bikini for a fuss-free poolside outfit, or wear it over your little black dress and throw on some heels for a night out in town! Apart from apparel, you’ll also find a select range of accessories like matching shoulder bags and slip-on shoes made of Italian leather.
If you’re looking for an alternative to the usual silver or gold accessories, gemstones are a great option. For affordable, contemporary designs, head to homegrown label Lustre Jewellery’s site! Founded by self-taughter designer Anaita Thakkar, Lustre delivers quality semi-precious jewellery without the hefty price tag.
Anaita picks some of the finest semi-precious stones and has her designs handcrafted in extremely limited quantities, in ateliers around the world. Because of her passion for detail and flair for design, her brand has developed a loyal following; her studio has now become a hidden gem where women visit to treat themselves to jewellery that’s unique and lasting. Even more reason to satisfy your online shopping cravings – there’s also free shipping worldwide on orders over $300!
Inspired by the cultures of Southeast Asia, this fashion and home accessories brand is one to bookmark. From sterling silver cufflinks and striking bangles, to exquisite lacquerware with Southeast Asian motifs, the products you see on Forbidden Hill’s snazzy site are designed in Singapore and made by fine artisans from the region.
We’ve got our eye on the Silk Bangle collection, which features high-quality bangles in a variety of shades and designs. These vibrant arm candies are made with interchangeable inserts of pure Thai silk nested into precious metals, adding a gorgeous pop of colour and character to whatever outfit you have on. Another noteworthy mention is the Utama lacquerware collection, specially created to commemorate Singapore’s Bicentennial. Hand-lacquered in artisanal workshops, the collection pays homage to Sang Nila Utama, who, as legend has it, saw a mighty lion when he arrived in Singapore and named the island “Singapura”.
Stones that Rock
From necklaces to bracelets and earrings, all Stones that Rock pieces are made with hand-selected freshwater pearls, semi-precious stones or crystals, and often feature silk and leather accents. Try the versatile lariat necklaces, which come in an array of colours to dress up any outfit. Enjoy free shipping in Singapore!
Creating beautiful pieces based on the Arabian Keffiyeh scarf, founder Louise Jasper was inspired to start her fashion brand Jasper Living when she arrived in multicultural Singapore. The collections, which include dresses, separates and accessories, are all limited edition, available in a range of colours and perfect for life in the tropics. Personally, we’re huge fans of the Dempsey and Ophier dresses!
Founded by Belinda Lee and Su May, who felt that the local swimwear scene was lacking options, PinkSalt merges both style and function into its swimwear design, creating pieces that are stylish and contemporary but still classy. Each season the duo design an original print as the focus of each collection, too.
Founded in 2014 in Singapore, this local label creates luxury swim, active and resort wear for women. Designs and prints are inspired by multi-cultural elements of Singapore.
These summer essentials – think maxi dresses and roomy jumpsuits in bold prints – will take you from home to beach to bar! Materials are sourced from Bali and are oh-so-comfy.
Collate the Label
Setting itself apart as a luxe yet affordable designer for style-savvy ladies, Collate the Label has a growing loyal following thanks to its versatile and feminine silhouettes. Favouring tailored silhouettes like shift dresses and peplum shapes with nipped-in waists, this label will have a place in wardrobe for years to come.
Focusing on quality construction, cut and fit, Ong Shunmugam is a contemporary womenswear label that has pioneered the reinvention of traditional Asian silhouettes such as the cheongsam and qipao. We love how founder Priscilla Shunmugam puts a creative spin on traditional textile techniques and silhouettes to create wearable and elegant ready-to-wear pieces. The label also takes on custom bridal and evening-wear design requests, too.
If it’s a feminine and flirty outfit you’re after, look no further than whimsical local label Aijek. Inspired to make real women look and feel fabulous, designer Danelle Woo creates stunning dresses, skirts, tops and trousers in natural fabrics that will ensure you stand out for all the right reasons!
Elohim by Sabrina Goh
Well-loved for it’s oversized androgynous designs, local fashion designer Sabrina Goh’s collections are easy to wear and are expat-figure friendly. From oversized shift dresses to flattering dresses and culotte pants, there’s a style to suit every shape.
Award-winning designer Silvia believes that women can be powerful and independent without losing the grace and poise of their femininity. The local label only works with trans-seasonal collections (fashion pieces that can be worn across all seasons) unfettered by the trends, reinforcing the concept of slow fashion.
This label specialises in handcrafted artisan jewellery made of sterling silver or semi-precious stones. You’ll love the quirky yet modern take on jewellery design.
For comfortable handmade and quality ballet flats and other leather accessories.
Looking for a boutique handbag, a fun clutch or an evening purse? Based in Singapore, this namesake bag label uses top-notch leathers and fabrics in creating one-of-a-kind, Asian-inspired designs.
A long-established label offering androgynous and minimalist collections for women.
Inspired by Bali and Ibiza, Baliza designs timeless, sustainable resortwear clothing perfect for summer. Shop unique garments ethically made by women in Jaipur, India, using sustainable fabrics and traditional techniques of beading and block printing.
Handmade in a small family-run factory in Bali, UBU offers fun and functional swimwear made from recycled fabric that’s derived from post-consumer materials like old fishing nets.
Eden & Elie
This Singapore-based brand offers ethical jewellery handmade with premium and responsibly-sourced materials like delica beads from Miyuki, a manufacturer in Japan.
Ling Wu Bags
If you’re after leather bags, you should check out Ling Wu’s gorgeous designs crafted in python skin and leather in modern designs.
Handcrafted by experienced craftsmen in Italy, local label Maeso’s shoes are made to last. The star of the show is the material used: high-quality, full-grain vegetable-tanned leather sourced from leading tanneries in Italy.
In Good Company
This concept label creates capsules of casual wear collections in a palette of neutrals perfect for Singapore’s climate, from simple shift dresses to crepe camisoles and cotton pants.
Also: Stores, websites and events that sell local designs and more
The fashion, accessories and homewares clearance sale was started and is organised by jewellery brand Stones that Rock. It features some of Singapore’s top independent local brands, designers and boutiques who will be selling their products at clearance prices in support of the Singapore Committee for UN Women.
Held twice every year, this shopping event features a curated selection of indie, design-led local brands. Find over 300 brands across women’s and men’s fashion and accessories; furniture and home décor; lifestyle products; and children’s goods and fashion. Over 80 percent of the brands you’ll find here are socially responsible.
This fairly new website stocks ‘made in Singapore’ products across art, kitchenware, women and men’s fashion and tech. It also hosts regular pop-up events.
The Emporium Group bring together a mixture of one-offs alongside items from Singapore’s mainstream brands. It has stores at #01-84 Millenia Walk and #02-23 Orchard Gateway.
For more, see our Style section.