On the Make

Make Out

Come Together

What should young people do with their lives today? Many things, obviously. But the most daring thing is to create stable communities in which the terrible disease of loneliness can be cured.” 

― Kurt Vonnegut 

We, like so many other wonderful brands part of Ate’s Creatory family spent the day processing the events of the past three days, resting our throats, allowing the blood to rush back down to our feet.

What an incredible three day festival of all things local. It was such a delight to be part of this epic event that brought together the whole spectrum of Singaporean creative life. From food and drink outlets like Artichoke, 2am dessert bar, 28 Kong Kong St, Kith… (the list could go on and on) to local artists, musos, retailers and artisans like our friends Magpie, CavalierThe Letter J Supply & The Paper Bunny, Amuse ProjectsSupermama, The General Co and Tofu.

If you ever need a Who’s Who of the Singapore creative scene – I suggest you hop on over to the Creatory site for a comprehensive list.

We had people of all ages visit us, some remarking that this place gave them “Brooklyn vibes” (better yet we thought: this was right in the +65!). We got to share our story, have lots of laughs and most of all, really interact with our neighbours and new friends. There was such a wonderful kampung spirit running through the place. When they weren’t completely mobbed themselves, the girls from Lulu’s Lemonade would pop over with fresh drinks for us, our wonderful friends from Ice Cream Cookie Co kept us company (we even scored their brownie on the last night!), Roxy from Artichoke would sneak treats up every so often… Even our visitors would ply us with food from home (thanks for the pasta, Shirlynn), knowing how swamped we were.

We were thrilled to bits when kids would run up and sniff everything, we loved shooting the breeze about gum trees and the smell of ripened summer mangoes with one awesome creative… And it didn’t matter to us that we had shared the same info on loop – because no matter how many times you repeat it, Mmerci Encore is all about artisanal aromatherapy goods, handcrafted in Singapore in small batches from the best raw materials sourced from France and Australia.

There was an amazing energy, a wonderful summer camp kind of vibe that I’m missing even now. It also made me realise how deep our roots with the community ran outside of Creatory. Did you know, for instance, that Joanne of The Letter J Supply calligraphs all our gift certificates for the bespoke orders we do? So many more stories we could share, but we’ll leave these for another time.

As I spent the day winding down, packing orders and treating myself to a banana and nutella crepe & earl grey tea at Pasarbella, my mind kept going to the Ate team – if we’re tired, they must need to go into hibernate mode till next summer. I am so grateful to Daphne & Sharon from Ate for the invite and for the chance to be part of this collective of incredible creatives. So thank you Ate for this gift to the community! You’ve sown the seed of awesome and I know we’re not the only ones who hope that Creatory becomes A Thing.

To the curators of level 6, the HJGHER team, who worked hard to pull the whole show together, thank you so much.

And finally, props to anyone who participated and supported this great event just by rocking up. To absolutely everyone who supported us – prayed for us, advised us (Jaime!), bought a scrub, spritzed some facial mist on, debated picking patchouli over geranium essential oils, spent two minutes scanning the table, confessed that they stalked us on Instagram (you are so freaking awesome!), gave us food, carried tables for us, volunteered as kopiboys (MJ, Edrick & Terence – I love you), sold stuff on our behalf (Maz, Norman, Tash), drove straight from the airport to visit, hooked us up with other cool people (Sandra!) … thank you! Merci buckets, as Norman would say. It’s so much better when we’re together. You all make life here in Singapore so sublime.

Hope we all can get together to support each other soon. Local is lovely. Love thy neighbour x #spreadkindness

Mmerci Encore at Creatory

Adventure sure has a way of finding us. We’re so thrilled to announce that Mmerci Encore be part of the action at Creatory.

Shining the spotlight on the incredible creative talent in Singapore, CREATORY brings together more than 80 of the biggest innovators on the little red dot for a festival unlike any other.  CREATORY features movers and shakers from Singapore’s most creative disciplines – food, beverage, art, music, design, architecture, retail and entertainment.

That’s right. Singapore’s leading lights of the creative scene, all under one roof.

Guests can expect innovative food & beverage experiences from some of Singapore’s most popular chefs, restaurants and bars, live art installations, DJ and music performances and opportunities to attend pop-up workshops. 

CREATORY will be housed in Tasty Plaza, a newly repurposed industrial building in the upcoming Macpherson estate, which is dedicated to Singapore’s F&B and lifestyle entrepreneurs. Make sure you get your tickets today – we can’t wait to see you and share all our aromatherapy goodies with you there.

Creatory 2014

Mid-Week Mantra

Stop comparing where you’re at with where everyone else is. It doesn’t move you farther ahead, improve your situation, or help you find peace. It just feeds your shame, fuels your feelings of inadequacy, and ultimately, it keeps you stuck. The reality is that there is no one correct path in life. Everyone has their own unique journey.”
– Daniell Koepke

//

Winners focus on winning. Losers focus on winners.”

Stay on Your Grind

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

― Theodore Roosevelt

Of course, the non-gentrified reading of Mr Roosevelt’s statement would be, Opinions are like a*holes, everyone has one.

As a creative, the issue I have with critics who make snap judgements with no real context or background is that some feel that they’re entitled to a reactive, knee-jerk opinion before taking the time to understand what it is they’re judging.

You took that one lit class in uni, read that one Wiki entry on Manet or dabbled in ikebana and suddenly you’re an expert? Suddenly you know better than the chef who spent 25 years at his craft all to be declared “overrated” because he made you a bad starter?*

Watching CSI in your jammies every Monday night does not a forensic scientist make.

In this digital age of fast likes, love or hate is an instant impulse. It’s as easy as double-tapping a picture or scrolling to the next photo/review/article/show/song.

Instead of taking the time to understand what a music artist is trying to tell us in in a body of work, we cherry pick songs off iTunes and forget about buying complete albums. (Guilty of this, to the absolute horror of my partner).

Of course everybody judges, of course art is meant to inspire, provoke, challenge, confront. But really. Do you think you could have done a better job? If so, what’s stopping you?

Instead, and this is a note to self, to celebrate the fact that someone is going out on a limb. That takes balls, surely. Let’s focus on the good – on courageous creative endeavours, on the hard work and preparation. Let’s appreciate something other than our own smug opinions for a change and understand before we diss; give constructive feedback in a way that motivates each other to do better next time. Maybe, just maybe, even wait to be asked for our thoughts before soapboxing?

As Jenna Lyons says, “Giving feedback in the creative world is so delicate. I spend a lot of my time picking my words carefully.”

So why be a douche when you can be awesome?

And that’s the beauty of life. If you feel the need to contribute something bigger than yourself, well, nobody’s standing your way. The value of other people’s words is what you determine it to be.

Dear reader, you don’t need anybody’s permission to shine. Just do your thang.

* And hello, since when are mistakes a bad thing necessarily?

aromatherapy art bon mots creativity design little things love music poetry power tripping self-care zen