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Friday, October 26, 2012

(Un) Fashion Vintage Collection - Ekamai

This vintage boutique started around 8 years ago as a men's vintage leather shoe shop in the second hand area of Chatuchak Weekend Market. Around 1 year ago they opened twin his and hers vintage shoe and accessory boutiques at the corner of Ekamai Soi 10 (the complex with Happy Monday, Burger Factory and others).

Their stock comes from Europe and Japan and new products come in every 1-2 weeks. Love the vintage heels, boots and purses. There's even some cute first-hand Marc Jacobs scarves.

If you want vintage leather without the sweaty excursion of Chatuchak, here's your place! Afterwards, stop by Happy Monday and have a Hoegaarden or Sangsom soda with the dek neaw indie hipster set.

Getting there: There's parking in the Ekamai Soi 10 shopping complex. Or take the BTS to Ekamai and take a taxi (3 minutes) or walk (20 min) to Soi 10.
Check out their Facebook page.
Opening Hours: 12:00pm - 9:00pm every day
Telephone: +66 (0) 2 726 9592

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Thai Fashion Brands on Instagram

Instagram this, instagram that! Food looks more delicious, simple things more poignant, quotes are... well, still a waste of instagram IMHO. Brands have been embracing the Facebook-owned mobile network more now too. Just search #nyfw to see all the shows and parties of New York Fashion Week from the perspective of fashion bloggers, editors, designers and models. Ok, can't compare it to Google Glass at DVF but it's still cool.

Thai fashion brands to follow on instagram:

Some #instashops:

Some cool Bangkok restaurants:

Thursday, September 6, 2012

SOS - Save Our Style!

I recently discovered new online magazine and shop SOS, which stands for Symbols of Style, after either a paid ad or a friend liking it caught my eye on Facebook. Can't quite remember now.

Every item, photograph, interview and restaurant review (yes, they do food too) is carefully selected for its design aesthetic and style. I think this site really has the potential to be a style bible for Thailand. I'm a believer in Thai style. It's different and unique and we have our own trends. It's not the same when our magazines are supplanted with spreads from Marie Claire UK. Thai designers also need a stage that grants them the respect they deserve.

For once, SOS is taking into consideration how Thais really dress here, current trends, not just those walking down Paris catwalks, and practical issues like weather, seasonality. (See their post on 'hot weather leather.')

I just received my first SOS package the other day, delicately wrapped in tissue paper, arriving fashionably on time!

With different special deals on orders every day of the week and regular updates on products, it won't be my last!

Find them online at:
Facebook Page: Symbols of Style
Twitter: @Symbolsofstyle

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Thailand's Online Shops

There’s one fashion trend that’s catching on fast in Bangkok. No, not big eye contacts. No, not Korean cosplay, although who doesn’t love to dress up as anime characters on their day off. 

Social media-savvy entrepreneurs and fashion designers are finding that Thai consumers are opening up to shopping via laptop and mobile. Online shops are also adapting their business model to encourage new users. Cash on delivery, returns allowed, special deals for sharing/liking/following.

Online shopping isn’t just for credit card-clutching eBay addicts in America anymore.

Some shops popping up on my Facebook newsfeed lately:

This site brings together tons of labels from Kloset and Nike to Post-Nerd and Crazy Step. Men’s, women’s and kid’s clothes plus shoes and accessories are all here.  Find special sales and Thai brands you thought only existed in Siam Center. This online retail behemoth is set to take over the scene so watch out. Will they quell innovation, or give Thai designers an opportunity, consumers great deals all while inspiring investment in more online endeavors? (I think the latter but there is much debate.) It's all in Thai for now, but I hear English is coming soon.

It's a magazine. No, it's a shop. No, it's a design blog. If you're all about being chic this will be your go-to for updates on the design scene in Thailand. These guys have got the most stylish content marketing around. Each item and story is chosen with design in mind. Just hope they get more products soon.

You might recognize this Thai brand as a small boutique in Siam Square. It branched out to Central Ladprao and now has an online store via their website and Facebook page. With over 80,000 likes I think we can agree this person’s mom made some cool stuff. Find women’s tops, skirts and dresses that make great work-wear.

Focusing on women’s clothes, ThereDress is a Facebook shop featuring work friendly dresses, pants and shirts. ‘Like’ their page and click on ‘About’ for step-by-step details on the ordering and shipping process.

Rulabuy features special sales from different men’s, women’s, accessories and cosmetics brands. You’ll find mostly Thai brands, including Issue and Asava, at discounted prices but also some international labels. Deals are always being updated so I think this page deserves a bookmark.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Jaspal Special Collection by Nuj Novakhett

An Element of Mystery

I've been shopping at Jaspal for over a decade, a quarter of the brand's lifetime. It's somewhat of a mysterious brand to me throughout the years. At first I thought it was a foreign upscale brand. I felt the clothes were aimed more at the working-age girl rather than my teenage self. (Part of the mystery might come from their commitment to using only European-looking models in their advertising.)

That Awkward Phase

By the time I started working I knew it was a Thai brand, founded by a Thai-Indian family with a background in textiles. By then I didn't relate to the brand. Everything seemed embellished where it didn't need to be and I couldn't find any pieces that would last beyond the season.

Sure, when the 70% sale came around I was rifling through the racks with the best of 'em. But it wasn't a staple label in my wardrobe. Meanwhile, Jaspal was busy adding a Home collection, introducing other brands like Footwork to the Thai market and expanding to Malaysia.

To Brand or Not to Brand

I think the Thai-Indian founders had the right idea - going from a manufacturer or middle man creating and selling fabrics for other brands to a being the designer and brand yourself. Incidentally, many Chinese retail companies are now doing the same.

The Next Step with Nuj

Now, the brand has developed itself once more. Following in the footsteps of retail giants TopShop, H&M and event Target, Jaspal has introduced it's first co-branded designer capsule collection.
Nuj Novakhett isn't as famous in Thailand as she is in New York and LA, a quality that will soon ensure her fame here in Bangkok. She studied at Parsons the New School of Design and has already shown at New York Fashion Week. Read more about her here.

Inspired by the under water world, the collection is demure but in control, sexy but hidden. She takes slim, structured silhouettes and adds unexpected cutouts. Draped dresses and tops, and soft pastel colors contrasted with black round out the collection. With a nod to Thai conservative culture (I think) she offers mesh slips in nude and black to lengthen dresses and skirts. Bonus: it looks very chic too. See the entire collection here. The best part? Prices mostly hover around 2,000 Baht - 5,000 Baht.

Nuj Novakhett's capsule collection, part of Jaspal's Pre Fall 2012-2013 collection is 20% off at Terminal 21 (Asoke) until tomorrow Sunday July 1. Jaspal has store locations around Thailand and Malaysia.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Thai Airways Market II

I made another visit to the Thai Airways Market with few friends last weekend. The same staple shops were there with new collections of clothes imported from the check-in bags of Thai Airways US, Hong Kong and Korean-bound stewardesses. See my past post for more detailed info on Thai Airways Market.

The food court here has some of the best options for Thai food and there's even pasta. 
The original fresh spring rolls 'ก๋วยเตี๋ยวลุยสวน' which have been copied all over the city.
First stop was the outdoor section of the market, closest to the food court.  Cheap work-wear for us office workers.

Great deals on clothes they claim are imported from Korea.  More likely China, but hey who's counting.

Ceramic earrings galore at this stall. Lane closest (parallel) to the food court, you can't miss it.

Some styles here I've seen in Siam and Terminal 21. Prices at Thai Airways are around the same as these other shopping meccas.
Name brand brushes and makeup. Might not last as long as the real thing, but a good deal at less than 200 Baht each for brushes.
Inner portion of the market with air-con shops.

Believe store selling makeup, cosmetics, and personal care products from name brands. Lancome, Clinique, Urban Decay, Benefit, La Mer etc. Cheaper than department stores but items are real so shop owners won't bargain too much.
'Soi 1' at the end of the first air con shop soi.  Lots of work appropriate and trendy clothes, peplum tops, layered skirts , shift dresses and colorful blazers. Prices upwards of 2,000Baht, everything imported from Korea or US.

Clothes frenzy in the middle of the market (air-con side). This kiosk sells knit tops and dresses by brands like H&M, Gap, and some American brands I've never heard of before. All made in Thailand so prices are around 200 Baht each.
Tops from the kiosk.

Next to the kiosk this shop sells original Thai designer duds like Kloset and Sretsis, usually only 1 piece of each item so don't expect to find different sizes.

Shoes from BCBG, House of Harlow, Tory Burch, Prada and Michael Kors.

'Kanta' takes on the neon trend with a vengeance! Flowery pants, bright tanks and colorful jeans.

Soft pastel prints and more peplum tops spotted on the way out of the market. This shop is in the outermost lane (along the road) halfway through the lane - flowy tanks may fit larger sizes, but beware like most shops, there's only one small size for many items.
A vintage top  I got for 700 Baht from the non-air con side of the market.