Our thoughts on the future...
With so many goods now mass-produced using advance automation and manufacturing means so as to drive prices lower, several new societal concerns have surfaced. The obvious impact would be on how numerous heritage crafts and trades are gradually being displaced and lost over time.
While the value of traditional crafts have been overshadowed by new technologies, we still believe that artisanal crafts will have a place alongside modern production in the future ; Creating bespoke wares, small batch customised goods and thoughtfully crafted experiences for the discerning individuals who still value the irreplaceable private interactions with a maker as well as slow and delicate processes of handcrafting goods.
Another concern is how the new unhealthy and fast paced consumption would impact our environment. In our humble opinion, a good way to cut down our footprint could be as simple as starting with changing our purchases habits. Instead of constantly buying and then disposing away cheaper mass-produced goods, considering buying less and buying better. Save up for a well made leather product that will last you for a lifetime, buy pieces that would never fade with trends and invest in heirloom objects that you could pass on down for generations. That way, we'll all consume less yet live better because we accumulate wealth, in the formal of better valued possessions.
Last but not least, each time you sign up for a workshop, buy a piece of crafted goods or even shop at your local grocer. You should know that you are supporting your local craftsmen, makers and designers, independent folks who still believe in creating things with their hands using the finest raw materials and techniques.
Helping our local community is great, so thank you from the bottom of our hearts.
The future belongs to those who are willing to get their hands dirty, so let’s craft a better version of the future together.
Join us in the movement #thefutureiscrafted #thegeneralco
Kevin Seah trained as an apprentice seamstress in women's tailoring at a tender age of 17. After over two decades of hands-on experience, he founded his eponymous label to craft quality bespoke and made-to-measure menswear in 2009. The business may have evolved tremendously over the years, yet face-to-face client interactions remain paramount to Kevin’s process – an often neglected stage in this digital era.
Charmaine Seah-Ong and Derek Ong founded Elementary to fill a gap in the branding and marketing industry. They have achieved that, and more. The all-round agency has worked on diverse projects, from the sleek Philippe Starck hotel, The South Beach, to hipster chill-out spot, Lepark. The Ongs perceive the team as their extended family, steering the ship with honesty and openness. They believe that disagreements, if motivated by a common goal to produce the best possible work, will make the young team stronger. While busy running Elementary, the husband and wife duo are full-time parents to daughter Charlie Rose.
More than three years ago – amid demanding day jobs – Huiwen and Kenneth picked up pottery to spend quality time together. Working with their hands and casting objects out of dust, the lessons triggered a reconsideration of their place on Earth. They asked themselves if they could be the change in their lives. Having worked for a decade in real estate investment, Huiwen went on a sabbatical to Tajimi, Japan to deepen her practice in ceramics. She returned to Singapore and founded Studio Asobi with Kenneth, who was still working as an architect – he has now joined her full time.
We had the lovely pleasure of visiting the gorgeous light filled studio of calligrapher Clarence Wee, founder of Craft Varies and got to spend the morning with him to better understand his story, learning journey as well as the source of passion for writing. While Clarence has been consistently sharing the progress of his calligraphy and handlettering works ever since he began writing more than five years ago. His journey might have been intuitive, but it was not without self-doubt, honest introspection, hard work and perseverance. People often raised questions on the commercial viability of his path. Yet he devoted day and night and taught himself how to draw or write letterforms.