If you are looking for something with a bit of edge…or just not what everyone else has got, then you will have to veer off the beaten track. Here are a few places to start…
25-27 Haji Lane
T: (+65) 6299 5805
We hate to use the horribly over-used word ‘lifestyle’, but this can only really be described as a lifestyle store. And it is a lifestyle store as lifestyle stores should be. A great place for present perusing – whether it is presents for you or other people. We (surprisingly) picked up some very man friendly gear here in terms of knick knacks for the home. Pretty without being pointless and very well laid out. BTW: The Salad connection is rather dubious….the girl on the till had no idea why it was called Salad…the owner was more succinct, but it still doesn’t make much sense: it is because every 3 months, their collection changes, like a fresh bowl of salad…. But they are great buyers here and the do not over order, or re-order, their stock.
Opening Times: 12pm-8pm Mon-Sat. Closed Sun
16A Haji Lane
T: (+65) 6297 0169
Public is part of the same store as Loft (see BUY ME for her) and features a very select selection of one-of-a-kind interior products from local and international designers. It is also a gallery space that can be hired for your own private party.
Opening Times: 1pm-8pm Mon, Wed, Thu, Sun; 1pm-9pm Fri & Sat. Closed Tue
31/33 Haji Lane
T: (+65) 6396 4048
Hands down winner for the best self-indulgent yummy mummy shop in town – shop ‘til you drop in this miniature style emporium/ice cream parlour while your little darling is silenced with an ice as he waits quietly for you in the café section (same room, just positioned slightly to the side). Non mummies, fear not. The stock here rocks and this is one of the trailblazing Haji boutiques that turned it from a back alley off Arab Street into a destination. A good pick of very buyable home furnishings, that major rather heavily in cushions, made special by the prints and fabrics (a lot of silk). You may not be able to buy it all, but at least here you can drool over the hand coloured Timorous Beastie wallpaper.
Opening Times: 11am-8pm Tue-Sat; 1pm-7pm Sun. Closed Mon
16A Lorong Mambong
T: (+65) 6466 3227
Doesn’t really deserve a mention, it just about holds its head up because it stocks ‘lifestyle’ things which are hard to find out here. Move its location to outside of Asia, and it’s nothing special. To their credit they do have a few one-off finds, but most of their stock is rather more mainstream. Good oil burners and OK glasswear. They also have a smaller outlet next to Hotel Scarlet (T: (+65) 6467 2663).
Opening Times: 11am-8pm Mon-Thu; 11am-9pm Fri-Sun
Tong Yuan Industrial Building (#07-01)
85 Playfair Road
T: (+65) 6281 2197
Kitsch, funky, cool and sometimes a little crazy, if it is a replica Bubble chair, a white leather chesterfield or a distressed french renaissance style mirror, this is your place. It is also full of some really quite nice little people’s clothes, good pressies and a few quite interesting larger pieces, but mostly it is just fun. Over-sized replica regency chairs sprayed silver with grey velvet upholstery stand next to some really very nice aluminium french cafe style chair remakes – it is nothing if not eclectic!
They have a few outlets but this is their HQ where they also have an interiors service. They are open by appointment only during the week but go on Friday or Saturday between 10am and 6.30pm under your own steam. Make it around noon and you can go and check out the rather more elegant and accomplished designs (that come with a rather larger price tag) at Grafunkt in the same building.
Opening Times: Mon-Thu by appointment only. 10am-6.30pm Fri & Sat. Closed Sun
Delphi Orchard (#01-01)
402 Orchard Road
T: (+65) 6737 1508
A gorgeous, large and airy store that seems to encompass all nordic offerings. Everything from glass wear to girls wear fills the shop. There is also sleek, clean-line furniture plus furnishings. You can actually buy scandinavian printed fabrics by the metre and some really lovely design pieces….Taste like this doesn’t come cheap, but then when it comes to serious style, you can expect to pay.
Opening Times: 11am-8pm Mon-Sat, 11am-7pm Sun
MILES AND THEODORE
71 Amoy Street
T: (+65) 6423 9155
A veritable symphony of stripes….finally a place that champions colour. Fabulously un-Singaporean in that there are no flat white walls or expanses of gold and grey, here you can find stunning juxtapositions of texture and tone with a very heavy Italian slant. In fact the only Asian feeling element is a truly divine range of plates adorned with jewel like paintings of koi – far too beautiful to actually put any food on. The range is due to expand shorty leaving us only to wonder whether the rest of the set should be placed on the table or wall. Gem-like footstools, fabulous floral accent rugs and towels that envelop you entirely in their soft cotton pile – in the way that only a Missoni towel can do. If money is no object and your idea of style is Italian pantone pumped designs then this place is sublime.
87 Amoy Street
T: +65 6222 1456
Another member of the small group of design led, artfully styled shops in this classy but quirky area of town. Eclectic articles for your home and, if you can bear it, to give away. Side tables, rabbit lights, handmade jewellery and a smattering of paper products made especially for this shop using recycled maps and architectural prints. They describe themselves a shop filled with objets curieux, some more curious than others, but all carefully selected for their quirkiness – so when you can’t stand any more cookie cutter, Tanglin Mall, overpriced tat….head for here and purchase something with integrity and style. You may pay for it but at least you will have something no one else does…even if it comes in the guise of a polar bear bookshelf.
Opening Times: 12.00pm – 7.30pm Mon-Sat. Closed Sun
88 Club Street
Homeware/giftshop with attitude, this is almost Singapore’s answer to Pedlars in London’s Portobello. Buy a $1,000 + repro gramophone that Grandpa might have played, made entirely of ceramic, that you can plug into your ipod, or a piece of giant lego that doubles as a coffee table for your inner child. Pantone folding chairs are off set with an enormous amount of utterly useless and totally unnecessary (but quite cool) stuff to surround yourself with. Finally, a design-led boutique store with a sense of humour, and quite a good eye for detail. Just try not to look too hard at the price tags.
Opening Times: 12pm-7pm daily
75E Lowen Gardens
T: (+65) 6506 0920
Not only do they make their money from interior design, but presumably, also from their lavish and thoroughly tasteful furniture and home accessories. There is nothing financially clever about shopping in this place, but your house will look fabulous. Specialists in hard-to-come-by treasures that are not at all Asian and refreshing only if you can justify their sky high prices.
Opening Times: 9am-5.30pm Mon-Fri; 10am-4pm Sat. Closed Sun
Tanglin Shopping Centre (#02-54/55)
19 Tanglin Road
T: (+65) 6235 5020
Good old fashioned shop that feels as if it’s been here way before the word boutique was coined. Great, but pricey, place for unusual cushions. We love their navy offering with a real piece of white, knotted rope on the front which is the perfect present for the person who has everything…even their own boat. Also sells furniture and fabric.
Opening Times: 10am-7pm daily. Closed Sun