Watch! ChiobuTV

Chiobu – In Chiobu We Trust

(from the press release)

Chiobu Collective is the first broadcaster in Singapore that creates video content targeted at female audiences. The series of videos launched on Thursday and focuses on different aspects of art forms in Food, Fashion, Health, and Music in collaboration with in influencers like Cheryl Wee, DJ Tinc, and Sharon Lam.

In addition to enriching the local arts scene by providing meaningful content that viewers can engage and relate to, Chiobu Collective hopes to build a community where information is freely shared amongst those who practice honing their craft.

Chiobu Collective mirrors a growing movement in women taking a different role in culture and in media regionally. Sites such as Singapore Geek Girls exists to debunk the misconception of girls not being able to excel in the IT industry. Other than having girls who code, gather and help each other with problem solving, female leaders in the industry conduct talks and workshops that help build their community.

The brainchild behind Chiobu Collective is Ang Geck Geck, one of the youngest female directors in Singapore. Throughout her years of experience in directing commercial work, she saw that other females around were mostly given roles that were gender specific like makeup and wardrobe styling. This drove her to create a platform where artists can sell their works, and provide opportunities for collaboration to showcase their skills and talents. “I hope that Singaporean girls will realise that there is more to how the world limits you,” said Geck Geck. “Do not shy away from challenging roles that are male dominated. It is about how you fight to pursue your dreams that is most important.”

About Chiobu Collective

While the term ChioBu is common hokkien slang in Singapore used to describe girls who are hot, The Chiobu Collective aims to redefine it. We look beyond the surface and draw out different personalities that reside in each Chiobu to explore the beauty within through artistic expression, proving that girls have their own means and styles of self-expression, which in itself is already beautiful.

We support women regardless of their age, size, or race by showcasing their individual talents from different categories such as Cooking, Travel, Music & Dance etc. The videos are shared on an online platform to help build a community, opening up more opportunities locally, and internationally as the initiative gains awareness.

The Chiobu Collective was inspired by Chiobu Movement, a one time event in 2012 for females in the creative industry to express themselves by showcasing their written works, and photos.

For more information about the Chiobu Collective visit http://chiobu.tv

It Takes Balls by Adeline Loo

Our grannies knew something we didn’t – until now. Sitting down and click-clacking two needles together with a string of colourful yarn between them is totally chillax. These days, knitting has become a fashion trend, a social activity, some even call it the new yoga.

Why knitting is hot again? We find out from Adeline Loo, founder of It Takes Balls.

“I started ITB on my own and my sister Carol has joined me last year. She helps me to handle the marketing and social media platforms as I am terrible with stuff like that. It helps that she has a fashion background and knows how to take good photos.

My personal beliefs lie very strongly with the same ethos that Wool and the Gang is built upon  – to change the way Fashion is made. We really hope to bring more awareness of the maker movement to South East Asia where fast fashion reigns supreme. Of course, I have been advised to tone down on this message – people now tend to be put off when you rub the words ‘socially responsible”, “ethical” and “sustainable” in their faces too often. So instead of picketing and shouting my message at people, I use craft to silently communicate this. It’s an age-old thing known as craftivism where we use the crafts to get a message (whether political or otherwise) to people. Safer too, especially in Singapore where picketing will get me thrown in jail.

So ITB concentrates more on educating and first getting the public to be willing to DIY, hoping that conversation can then be created which will allow people to naturally begin questioning, as well as appreciating, the true cost of fashion. In this, we use the approach of first debunking the belief that knitting is for grannies or uncool – and people see that it can be fashionable and trendy and that they can wear something they are equally proud of as their luxury label items. My free and unlimited classes also attract them as we practically guarantee they can finish their projects as we guide them step by step. A lot of people don’t take up a new skill / craft / hobby as they fear they’ll not complete it without further help.

Aside from this, I strongly believe the mental and physical benefits of knitting is something I would love Singaporeans to discover, having personally benefitted from it. Singaporeans live in a fast-paced society – whilst I get it that job security and earning capability is very highly regarded here, I think that the tangible benefits of making and creating is something people should not give up on, and would actually help towards a better quality of life. Like how some turn to Yoga or meditation, knitting is the same – a moving meditation like tai chi.

Many people are also surprised as they imagine a feminist like myself would be knitting – and it is unfortunate this view exists – the problem is that when our feminist pioneers gave up the ‘unproductive’ crafts to join the workforce to be able to be valued equally as men, they forgot about the benefits the crafts provided. A very unfortunate loss. I read somewhere before (and use this very often as my response)  that the new feminist now is one who chooses to take back the knit (or cook or bake etc or another traditionally feminized craft). This reclamation shows the contemporary woman can reconnect with the female dominated art forms, to legitimize the importance of undervalued craft and show that the new woman has the privilege to express themselves through craft. Again, I suppose I should not harp too much on this angle as it’s probably not wise for the business aspect.”

Fancy joining Adeline’s close-knit crafters squad? Click here to ‘get the ball rolling’ with free lessons. 

 

 

The NONG Pop-Up Store

You may have heard the buzz about the NONG Pop Up Store sitting high above the urban sprawl on the rooftop of People’s Park Complex. But do you know the details of what is actually happening and when?

The store is run by Edible Gardens, a movement that aims to promote urban farming in Singapore. The retail space is a collaborative effort with Naiise.com and features a mix of sustainably sourced, upcycled and locally designed kitchenware, furniture, stationery and gardening equipment. Together, they hope to promote growing your own food at home, and helping people live sustainably and meaningfully with design.

This February the NONG project will turn into a platform dedicated to workshops, culminating in a Farmer’s Market on February 28 where local restaurants like The Cajun King and Morsels will set up store and cook food using the first harvests from the farm at NONG.

Workshop schedule:

  • The principles of Organic gardening. Feb 8 and 16 10am-11am, Feb 9 and 15 2pm-3pm. An introduction to how to garden and what to look out for when gardening organically. Bjorn will share tips on organic growing and his experiences working with plants in the tropics and in the temperate climate.
  • Making plant babies, propagating herbs. Feb 8 and 16 2pm-3pm, Feb 9 and 15 10am-11am. A hands-on workshop by Rob on how to increase the number of herb plants at home so you never need to buy another pack of basil.
  • Urban beekeeping. Feb 22, 2pm-3pm, Feb 23 10am-11am. A talk on urban beekeeping by Thomas our resident beekeeper. Sharing with you insights into the world of apiary and the ups and downs of beekeeping in tropical Singapore
  • An introduction to permaculture. Feb 22, 2pm-3pm, Feb 23, 10am-11am.A talk by Imran and Alex on permaculture, the principles behind this design philosophy and how you can apply it to both your garden design and your daily life.

All this is happening on the rooftop of People’s Park Complex, 6th floor, access by Residential lift near KFC. See you there!

Project Plug: #typesettingsg by Sun Yao Yu

The #typesettingsg project by Sun Yoa Yu is totally worth making a fuss about. Letterpress typesetting is a slow, most intricate process and the pieces of print  produced using this tactile technique are simply beautiful.

“It is basically a personal project to promote this traditional printing method using handset types. The handset typesetting era started in the 15th century and ended in the 70s, replaced with modern ways of printing. Although there has been a revival of letterpress, studios often use photo-polymer plates. The handset type printing method has been long forgotten. #typesettingsg also serves as the # for twitter and instagram to encourage more interaction with the public.” – Yao Yu.

This man deserves some serious respect!

 

The Upcycle Exhib: Snapshots of A Community

(from the press release)

The Upcycle Project aims to facilitate meaningful exchanges of stories and objects amongst various stakeholders of the MacPherson community. Through a series of engagements with MacPherson residents, designers and creative individuals have transformed unused furniture and everyday objects from the neighbourhood into relevant items for new owners.

This exhibition will showcase snippets and snapshots of the relationships that were formed around each object, and the lives that it has touched. Together, these images and stories form a larger narrative of the collective capacity of residents and designers to contribute to the neighbourhood, using the resources and skills that they hold.

Exhibition Dates: 23 Nov – 22 Dec 2013. Sharing Session and the Exhibition Launch: Fri 22 Nov, 7 – 9pm. Click here for details.

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