July 25, 2010
Dawn Poh

First of all, thank you everyone for your generous input on our previous  5 Travel Fashion Essentials post! Some of your comments have inspired me to create a series of Street Style around the World, gleaned from our observation of during visits to cities like Tokyo, Paris, London, Hong Kong, and many more! I find it intriguing how no two cities in the world have similar street styles and fashion. I figured that we should start from where we are from: Singapore. What better way is there to start off the street style series than from the place we spend most of our time in? It will probably be useful to all of you travelling to Singapore or any warmer climates during holidays, as well. Here is my take on the street style of Singapore:

Street style of the world singapore

✖ It’s hard to summarize something so diverse as street style and fashion, but Singapore is known for its fusion of the east and the west. This applies to our street style too: You can see a distinct separation between Japanese-inspired fashion, and western influnced style. I would say it’s about a 50-50 mix of the both in the streets of Singapore, although sometimes you can see an interesting mix between the two!

✖ In general, layering of clothing is not a trend in Singapore. This has got to do with our warm and humid climate – it is simply too warm outside to experiment with much layering! (Doesn’t stop us from doing it, but we do have a flagrant disregard for dressing for the weather.) This applies to head wear like hats and berets as well. Without such warm weather, I am sure we can see a wider variety of styles on our streets.

✖ I would say the fashion, or perhaps culture, is to dress down in Singapore. For some reason (which I do not approve of), people think it’s alright to dress in t-shirts and slippers to shop in town! But let’s put aside my prejudices and focus on the street style: Lots of flats and gladiator sandals, shorts and tank tops. I have seen a rise in the number of girls wearing heels lately, but a large percentage of them still prefer flats to heels and wedges. Any boots that goes higher than ankle boots are rarely seen.

Tips for dressing for Singapore

I suppose this section would be pretty useful for foreigners travelling to Singapore! I hope this can inspire Singaporeans to dress up more as well, because it is entirely possible.

✖ Like I’ve already mentioned above, Singapore is hot and humid year round, so breathable materials like cotton, jersey and chiffon is always in fashion. On the contrary, do try to avoid fabrics like PVC and leather. It’s too hot for them and you will find yourself sweating up a storm and having heat rashes – Not very attractive and healthy!

  • One additional tip for leather and pleather in Singapore. Heat and humidity encourages the growth of mould and fungus. Organic materials like leather can and will grow mould if you don’t take care of it! I’ve had many boots succumb to irreversible mould infestation. Pleather won’t get mouldy, but it will peel and flake. To prevent this from happening, remember to store your leather and pleather in a dry environment. Dry the items well should they come in contact with water. Investing in a dehumidifier will do you well in the long term!

Layering is still very much possible despite the heat in Singapore. The key to layering in Singapore is to stick to light, breathable fabrics: Silks, Chiffons and tulle for example. Arissa shows you how it can be done here and here as well! I love how layering different pieces can create a totally different style and look, so do not discount this just because of the weather! Singapore fashion doesn’t have to be boring just because it is hot.

This Alexander Wang-inspired top may be made of jersey, but it’s light and breathable. Pieces like this are perfect for layering.

✖ Weather in Singapore can only be described as being erratic. It can be sunny one moment, and pouring the very next. Hence, it might do you well to carry a light cardigan or blazer around at all times. Furthermore, almost all indoor places in Singapore are air-conditioned. It can actually get pretty chilly inside! I always carry with me a jacket for those times where I have to spend time indoors with air-conditioning at full-blast. Scarves work equally well! It’s not uncommon to see many Singaporean girls wearing light jackets and scarves on the streets.

It doesn’t have to be a thick jacket. This one made of jersey from Topshop does an adequate job!

✖ We have an extremely efficient network of roads and public transport system. So it is entirely possible to wear heels without much discomfort! Heels can do wonders to an outfit and I find it a pity that most Singaporean girls have yet to integrate them into their wardrobe. There are only so much flats you can have before they all start to look the same. Kick up your style a notch by wearing heels! Some outfits look so much better with heels than flats anyway, heels does so much more for your look than flats. Wearing a kickass pair of heels on the streets is one sure fire way to stand out in Singapore.

Singapore streetstyle shoes

Wedges are a comfortable and stylish alternative to flats.

Here’s my take on the Street Style and fashion of Singapore. What do you think about it? Anything else you feel that I should add on?

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6 comments

6 Responses to “Street Style of the World: Singapore”

  1. Woo says:

    Perhaps show stylish, well dress Singaporeans(beside yourselves) maybe celebs or other local fashion bloggers for example.

    [Reply]

  2. This is great! I love the info and blogs like this are so helpful when traveling. If I ever visit Singapore, this is my first stop to be sure what to pack!!

    [Reply]

  3. Flora says:

    As someone who grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, I thought I had perfected the art of layering clothes. I almost had to re-teach myself to do it for hot weather. Now I only buy natural fiber clothing and stock up at end-of-summer sales here in California before I go back to Singapore.

    Great post!

    [Reply]

    Arissa replied on

    Good on you! I think it’s going to take some wardrobe adjustments but we can all take on a challenge right? :D

    [Reply]

  4. Rachel says:

    I must visit – and all of your dresses are so pretty!!!

    [Reply]

  5. […] you can dry your boots completely, avoid wearing leather/pleather shoes. Like I have mentioned in one of my previous posts, mould loves damp places to grow on. If you insist on wearing your boots out, make sure to dry it […]

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