The Sretsis sisters on fashion, Thai silk and how to deal with copycats
Sretsis has come a long way since Pimdao, a Parsons fashion graduate, and her sister, Klyduan, started the brand in 2004. “We had zero experience, only a handful of ideas and energy,” says Pimdao, the second sister. “We worked hard to find our way to create our own brand.” Jewelry designer, Matina, came on board later on to help complete the product line. Years down the line and the business has grown exponentially. Sretsis is now a fashion powerhouse with more than 140 employees, including a stable of seamstress to craft the delicate details that are at the heart of every Stretsis piece. Fresh from the launch of their recent fall/winter collection, the three sisters get together at their Central Embassy flagship to look back on their journey. How has Sretsis changed over the years? Pimdao: Sretsis has always been very feminine, fantasy-inspired and fused with a vintage twist. We still hold on to a classic yet rebellious attitude. But we’ve also become more sophisticated as we’ve grown. The journey of Sretsis is probably reflective of the evolution of the Thai fashion scene. When we started Sretsis, people didn’t understand our statement. They looked at us and asked in which occasion they could wear our clothes. But now, people understand more the concept of individuality, the new concept of luxury—and that’s what Sretsis has always offered. Twelve year later, how do you leverage your brand so it doesn’t get dated? Pimdao: We prefer to define our brand as ag
Uniqlo kicks off year-end gifting season with a color-themed gift guide
Japanse fashion mecca Uniqlo launches a gift guide to begin the holiday season, featuring cool items for everyone you love. Let's have a look. Gift ideas for your boyfriend Gift ideas for your girlfriend Gift ideas for sisters Gift ideas for female best friends Gift ideas for male best friends Shop online here
Meet the Boys of Bangkok
Maybe it was fate that brought them together. Leisure Project, P.Mith and Q Design & Play are three of the best-selling local menswear brands in Siam Center. And the masterminds and designers behind each brand have teamed up to take their designs farther. Nattapon Kanokvaleewong, Praphat Somboonsitti, Ek Treechairusmee, Pakphum Mithranon and Anapat Thanakitpathompon came together in the collective goal of bringing Thai fashion to the global stage. The three brands have joined hands, naming themselves Boys of Bangkok. “It’s good that we all have different styles; it shows that there’s more possibility to play in men’s fashion,” cites Leisure Project’s Nattapon. Boys of Bangkok debuted as a group at Harbin Fashion Week earlier this year, surprising Chinese buyers and fashionistas with their innovative designs and cutting-edge fashion. Last month, they kicked off their local debut with a fashion show featuring their fall/winter collections at W Hotel Bangkok. The front row was packed with celebrities and the collections received rave reviews. Maybe people have said it right: it’s better together. Q Design and Play (est. 2010) A fashion brand for fun and daring boys. Praphat Somboonsitti and Ek Treechairusmee express their fun, humorous and sarcastic inclinations through the use of various, even experimental, materials and techniques. www.qdesignandplay.com P. Mith (est. 2012) Two BBFs, Pakphum Mithranon and Anapat Thanakitpathompong, have turned their passion for subt
The best shops in Bangkok
Local eyewear label Rosemanclub has ditched its original location in Sam Yam for a new, larger space in Sukhumvit Soi 31. Set behind a leafy façade and within a modern industrial architecture, the brand’s new flagship store showcases Rosemanclub’s complete eyewear collection as well as selected bags and apparel curated by its creative directors. A portrait of His Majesty King Bhumibol, which everyone remembers from the first store, is also reproduced here
Rabrabhi Lekponlakan, Puri Tiyapongpitak, Nattawut Puriwath and Trin Chanchaiprasong It was art that connected Rabrabhi Lekponlakan, Puri Tiyapongpitak, Nattawut Puriwath and Trin Chanchaiprason. That and an unwavering interest for unconventional fashion. “Carbon is a substance that is so versatile. It can become a diamond, or it could become charcoal,” says Trin, a stylist and the brand’s main designer. “Its this versatility that represents the core concept of our brand.” The four friends started the brand two years ago, taking charge of everything from designing the first collection to shooting the lookbook. It was this cutting edge lookbook that gained attention for the brand. Carbon’s first collection was well-received by the press and fashion cognoscenti and was featured in many Thai and foreign fashion portals. Sales were promising as well, boosting the possibilities for the small online shop. Carbon’s seminal collection also attracted merchandiser attention; the brand has been retailing at Gin and Milk at Siam Center since its second collection. At first glance, Carbon looks no different from any other minimalist fashion brand. But a closer look would reveal intricate details and sophisticated silhouettes. “Carbon is a minimalist brand with a twist of deconstruction,” Trin says. “It may look simple, but I would say it’s difficult to carry our total look. We emphasize functionality. However, we try to distort regular proportions— and I think that’s what excites peopl
Vinn ‘Champ’ Chokkhatiwat and Patararin ‘Fon’ Pongprasit An abstract conversation between the two strangers in Paris soon developed into a partnership in Thailand. This isn’t your typical love story. Rather, it’s the story of how designers Vinn “Champ” Chokkhatiwat and Patararin “Fon” Pongprasit came together to create their shared fashion label Vinn Patararin. It’s also the story of how two talented designers are using the skills they picked up abroad to transform Bangkok’s fashion scene. Champ was taking up his masters in Design and Contemporary Technology École Nationale Supérieure de Création Industrielle (ENSCI–Les Ateliers) in Paris when he met Fon. “We were both in the same group of Thais in France. We went to see exhibitions together and would always exchange ideas,” he recounts. “We both felt a connection so we decided to work together on a fashion project.” The duo had so much faith in the potential of their work that they submitted the collection to Copenhagen Fashion Week 2013. The bold move earned them accreditation as one of show’s “rising stars.” A showing at Paris Fashion Week followed two months later. From there, Fon, who has an interest in remodelling traditional costumes, did her internship at haute couture house Azzedine Alaia while Champ went to do his internship at Iris van Herpen. Here he learned more about the global fashion industry and different experimental techniques, and found his feet firmly on the ground. “I learned that contemporary artist
Thossapol Kerdkaew "My gown will be worn by the most prestigious fashion icons in Thailand. I can’t tell you yet who. You’d have to wait until next year to find out.” In a small apartment in Ladprao, which also doubles as his workshop, Thossapol Kerdkaew gives us a brief insight into his eponymous brand and a sneak preview of what we to expect from him next year. “I’m beyond excited. It’s going to be a big year for me,” he enthuses. The Khonkaen-born designer started his label, Kerdkaew, while he was studying at Thammasat University. But it was not until last year that he captured the attention of Thailand’s fashion elite. Thossapol was included in the shortlist of The Ultimate Showcase Thai Touch, a project started by the Department of Industrial Promotions that seeks to promote young budding Thai designers. The young designer was given the opportunity to grace ELLE Fashion Week’s fall/winter 2015 runway, an opportunity that disclosed his talent to a few of the city’s most stylish celebrities — Metinee Kingpayom, Cris Horwang and Kanyawee Songmuang have been spotted wearing his designs on various occasions. Next year, as we’re told, a heavyweight in the Thai fashion scene will grace the pages of one of the nation’s top magazine wearing a Kerdkaew creation. “Kerdkaew stands for black elegance,” the designer says. “Ladies who wear my creations must possess unconventional beauty. She must be fearless, unique, confident and not afraid to take risks.” Interestingly, Thossap
Chalita Hongsakul and Ornwassa Siamseranee MBA classmates Chalita ‘Pink’ Hongsakul and Ornwassa ‘Ob’ Siamseranee decided to quit their jobs as lucrative management consultants to become sportswear designers for their own label Wakingbee. The idea for the brand was sparked when both partners, once busy office workers who would go to the gym in their free time, realized that there were very limited sportswear options for women in the city. Neither Pink nor Ob have a background in fashion, but they made Wakingbee happen by focusing on what women need from their gymwear. “Fashion is something we can add in after working out function,” says Pink. “We want to create sportswear that makes women feel beautiful and confident. The name Wakingbee is inspired by the bee, which is a very active animal. We want our clothing to push women to live an active lifestyle.” “We blend function with femininity,” Pink continues. “For example, in our 2016 spring/summer collection, we had our sport bras and leggings stamped with soft watercolor-inspired prints.” Though launched only one and a half year ago, Wakingbee has broken into fast-fashion territory. “Our clients are now aware that people recognize if they wear the same outfit to the gym,” says Ob. “So now we work on six collections a year: three main collections with 20 designs each and three supplement collections with 10 designs each.” Their next step is to get Wakingbee recognized not only in Thailand but in other countries in Asia
The best music shops in Bangkok
One of Siam Square’s legendary spots, DJ Siam, has been popular for more than 20 years. It’s one of the coolest places to go get your music at Siam. They have a variety of music by Thai and international artists as well as some non-mainstream, indie bands (just like killing two birds with one stone). Kinda cool, isn’t it?
Browsing through for your favorite Vinyls and CDs, Zugrangma offers the classics from 1950-1980’s including the local folk songs and all sort of international music. DJ Maft Sai, the owner, put in the effort to find even the very rare Jamaican, South African, and Asian sounds that you can only discover here.