Find me under the palm trees.
Summers, for many, are a time for carefree moments, to bask under the sun, revel in the warmth, possibly jet off on a vacation. For us, it’s also special because it’s a time to feel closer to nature, as the greens of trees and bright blooms flourish, it’s the perfect time to appreciate its beauty at its fullest. This summer, we draw on some of our fondest memories of nature, our roots, the elements of our environment that have always caught our attention and awe - inspired by our second home, Singapore.
From swaying palm trees to frangipanis and dragonflies, here’s some deeper insight into our newest summer Chapter, Tropical Hearts, and why it’s a summer story we can all embrace.
A summer story
Sunshine, clear skies, lush forests, an ocean view, these are just a few things we think of immediately when it comes to a tropical summer season. It’s also what describes a perfect summer’s day in Singapore – our muse. Singapore has always been tied closely to our overall SUI story, it’s where our Founder began the business and started putting roots down for her own family. It’s a home away from home that embraces much of the nature that surrounds it so it’s no surprise that much of its native flora have made its way into our designs in various edits along the years - however, this time around, we’re excited to bring much more focus to this vibrant place.
According to National Parks, Singapore is home to at least 2,100 native vascular plants as well as between 23,000 to 28,000 species of fauna. And so, being so naturally biodiverse, a lot of the flora on the island have been design constants and favourites for us. In fact, the palm tree itself, a plant that thrives in the tropics, is present in our logo symbolising our connection to nature, reflecting how every SUI chapter carries a green heart. The monstera leaf, another that can be found all over Singapore, is also a plant we love to bring back every now and then, whether through print or embroidery. All in all, essentially, it is evident that this story is especially heartfelt, and we took this new Chapter as an opportunity to delve into some nostalgia while also bringing you a refreshed take on it all as we have only grown with each passing year.
And with that, this will be our ‘Year of Botanics’, in which our goal is to celebrate nature, its colour, its joy and its strength through the power of clothing. We hope to bring you closer to nature while helping you add timeless silhouettes to your summer wardrobe through these new pieces, so, let’s talk more about design and craft!
Summer silhouettes & colours
We design for everyday journeys and we know the SUI woman is multi-faceted - she works, she’s a mom, she’s a partner, a daughter and she juggles her roles like many of us. With that in mind, we always want our pieces to be versatile, multi-functional yet unique, something that can go from work to play or day to night.
Our silhouettes are created to compliment those journeys, with comfortable forms that you can move in freely wherever you may go,
When it comes to colours, we wanted it to reflect the bold vibrancy of the season while also making sure to create some classics that suit any time of year - all these shades, aside from white that is kept in its natural hue, are created using azo-free dyes, which do not contain chemicals toxic to our environment.
Mango orange to portray sweet summer fruits and bright sunny days; fresh green for flourishing palms and plants; oat beige, a subtler hue, for beach sands; and, finally, classic white for timeless moments.
Consciously crafted fabrics
When it comes to fabrics, breathability, comfort and versatility are key! We make sure that all of these points are met for every fabric we choose, as well as that each is produced as consciously as possible, whether that’s through how the fibre is grown or how the fabric is processed. These are the fabrics we worked with this summer:
1.Organic cotton: all our organic cottons, including the latter handwoven ones, are produced without the use of insecticides and pesticides ensuring the safety of farmers, workers, artisans (and you) when handled. This season, we have crafted using a variety of cotton fabrics such as poplin, satin, and double gauge.
2.Handwoven organic cotton: this cotton is produced with the help of WomenWeave! A long term vendor of ours, the NGO dedicates itself to supporting and guiding women weavers and workers in the handloom sector, helping them build they’re skills both in craft and business, all while providing an ethical workspace. This fabric is entirely created by hand from spinning the fibres to weaving them into fabric.
3.Handwoven Kala cotton: another handspun and handwoven fabric, this cotton is provided by Khamir, an NGO that supports and provides ethical workspaces for weavers in the Kachchh region of Gujarat. This fibre is particularly special because it’s native to that same region and it thrives in harsh conditions making it an abundant renewable, local resource.
4.Lyocell and Tencel: produced in sustainably managed plantations, these fibres are another renewable, natural, and biodegradable resource. It’s created from wood cellulose, the end product of which is a smooth, soft fabric that’s incredibly versatile.
Slow craft & tropical motifs
As always, we have worked with multiple slow crafts to create our looks, many of which are ours and our community’s favourites.
1.Print: another long term vendor of ours, Bagru Textiles, helped us create our 3 signature prints of the season, here’s a little intro to all of them and why we picked these motifs:
Monstera print - this motif is created by hand from carving the printing blocks to applying the print onto fabrics. In Chinese symbolism, the monstera represents long life and honouring those respected in our community - notions that connect to how these pieces are created to last and stay with you for years to come as well as remind you to appreciate the work of skilled artisans.
Fern print - this motif is created by hand from carving the printing blocks to applying the print onto fabrics. Fern plants are an incredibly old species of plant that can be found in 400 million year old fossils, moreover, the Māori who traditionally used silver ferns to find their way in the dark, also regard them as a symbol of stubborn resistance, and enduring power. The overall notion speaks to a reliable strength and conviction, what we hope you carry out in advocating for conscious lifestyles.
Golden trumpet flower print - this motif is screen printed. The golden trumpet or yellow allamanda flower is connected to spirituality in many ways. In ancient Hinduism, they were used in worship rituals to invoke the blessings of the goddess Saraswati, who is considered the epitome of knowledge and wisdom. In Buddhism, their yellow hue represented the path to enlightenment. Through these ideas, what we hope you embody is the desire to keep learning and growing, striving to become more conscious with every action.
2.Hand & Machine Embroidery: a SUI staple since our start in 2018, embroidery has always been a form we found depicts nature beautifully. Over the years, we’ve experimented with the craft, our own threadspeller team dedicated to learning new techniques, and with each Chapter have grown in creating our motifs. This time around, along with the above, we’ve focused on the flora and fauna that we always associate with the tropics.
Frangipani/champas - found in many subtropical and tropical climates, including South America, Central America and South Asia, champas are representative of new beginnings as well as a symbol of beauty, charm and grace.
Palm - currently, about 2,600 species of palms have been discovered, all native to subtropical/tropical regions. The palm branch or frond is a symbol of many things, a few of which are peace, triumph, and eternal life.
Butterfly - known for transforming drastically in their own lifetimes, butterflies are a strong symbol of metamorphosis, freedom and rebirth. Moreover, amongst many cultures, they have been long viewed as heralds of good fortune and joy.
Dragonfly - another symbol of transformation, the dragonfly is connected to ideas of fresh starts as well as happiness, love and hope.
3.Tie dye: this craft is one we introduced just last summer, one we think encapsulates the mood of the season perfectly! This time around, we depicted the soft pink of coral and sunsets; bright whites of clouds on clear skies; and the oat beige of a sandy beach to encapsulate this carefree time of year.
Our values remain the same with each Chapter, and this collection is no different. With each and every look, we promise a green heart - meaning ethical and sustainable practices in every aspect of our production. We partner with those with the same conscious mindset and we always want to be transparent with you, our community. Like we always say, change can only be brought about with collective action and we hope by sharing our journey, we encourage you to be green with your fashion and beyond.