Fashion

Dare To Disrupt: Keng How & Kage

by Evon Chng & Gordon Ng
14.04.2017
These 10 creatives have rocked the boat, challenged expectations, and shaken up the system. Here, we’re given a peek into the daily lives of these disruptors and what continues to drive them.

The quiet elegance of local brand biro (@birocompany) is underscored only by its attention to detail and immaculate construction. Brothers Keng How and Kage are the brand’s owners and designers, responsible for the measured design and made-in-Japan dedication to quality. This year also sees biro open a concept store, Shouten, that acts as an extension of that belief in craftsmanship.

From the beginning, we noticed a lack of well-made and high quality labels from Singapore. Most sought after brands are from Japan, America or Europe. We knew that we could make a label stand out equally in terms of uncompromising attention to craftsmanship and quality.

Craftsmanship and quality is so important to our brand. Throughout the three years of research and development, the samples we got from the factories we were working with weren’t satisfactory and didn’t meet the standards we were expecting. It was until we tried some factories in Japan that we knew they were the ones who were able to produce what we wanted.

The one thing that gets in the way of fashion labels succeeding is not having a clear direction for the brand.

Outerwear has been the most challenging for us because many would think it isn’t appropriate for our weather. However, there are customers that pick them up for their travels once they are comfortable with the brand.

Shouten is our first concept space that’s built solely on naturally produced indigo-coated wood from Tokushima in Japan. It reflects the biro aesthetic and philosophy of expressing the quality of design beyond clothes-making. It’s an extension of biro’s core beliefs in craftsmanship, appreciation of details, storytelling and way of life. 

Get to know our pick of ten rule-breaking creatives in the March 2017 issue of L'Officiel Singapore.

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