Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Jujube: high-end luxury apparel with an eco-friendly twist

SINGAPORE, 10 October 2010: In a sign that environmentalism is not just the domain of the less-than-wealthy, local fashion house Jujube announced its latest collection entitled Birds of Paradise in conjunction with the Global Work Party initiative organised by 350.org.

Comprising 12 designs - six modulated and six regular, the collection boasts of the patented G.R.O.W. Modulated Clothing Design System created by the designer and brand owner, Jujube Li. The modulated pieces can be disassembled and reassembled to form new combinations of eclectic designs simply by zipping the modular parts together to create whole dresses, and minimises raw material consumption in clothing design, reduces wardrobe usage and increases the value of each purchase exponentially.

The showcase was held at the Terra Plana outlet at Mandarin Gallery and included a short fashion show for invited guests - although a crowd of curious onlookers had gathered outside the glass walls to enjoy the show as well. Jujube Li herself was on hand to describe each piece as it was modelled and shared the underlying philosophy that inspired the designs.

The home-grown label was established in August 2008 as an ecological brand that adopts a holistic approach from start to end of the business cycle, and prides itself on "using only 100% ecological and biodegradable textiles for its designs".

Jujube Li revealed that she spent
more than a year sourcing for ecological textiles in order to uncover eco-certification standards that are the most reliable and established, even to the extent of creating a handmade newspaper mannequin in order to stay true to the ecological concept.

She believes that eco-fashion is in vogue now "because of the epiphany that is happening to individuals all around the world - a reflection of the understanding that the ever-increasing population of 6.8 billion can no longer afford to continue destroying the environment and pretend that there are no consequences", and sees it as "making the permanent and logical choice to support the eco-system we are part of".

Her designs illustrate the fact that eco-fashion does not always have to be casual wear or for the 'tree-hugger' and can instead appeal to anyone who can appreciate design and fashion.

The collection is made
from 100% Modal, a fiber produced by Austrian fiber production company Lenzing, which is currently the only fiber production company in Europe to be awarded the European Ecolabel for its efforts in maintaining strict environmental standards - from debarking the Beech trees in sustainable forests to neutralising the waste water such that it does not deplete abiotic life.

Inspired by the exotic creature known as the Bird of Paradise, famed for its rich plumage and royal poise and even revered by some as the most beautiful of all birds, the collection aspires to be just that - natural and magnificent, with the bright colours reflecting the climate derived from the vivacious fauna found in the lushness of the t

The Bird of Paradise collection from Jujube retails from SGD$208 onwards and can be purchased online at the Jujube Boutique or in person at Parco Marina Bay #P2-31 and Terra Plana @Mandarin Gallery #02-04. More information on the brand and its apparel is also available at www.jujube.be.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Eight Treasures gets non-vegetarians to celebrate World Vegetarian Day

SINGAPORE, 1 October 2010: Eight Treasures Vegetarian Restaurant hosted a dinner for 70 guests on World Vegetarian Day to celebrate the special occasion. A collection of VegVibe readers, Singapore Vegetarian Meetup Group members and Vegetarian Society (Singapore) members and their respective friends and family joined host, Ms Zenna Ho, in a sumptuous 8-course spread.

In an effort to create awareness, the stipulation for the dinner was that each vegetarian guest be accompanied by a non-vegetarian, and the sizeable number of non-vegetarians that had dinner for the first time at a vegetarian restaurant would surely have been a first of its kind in Singapore.

Unsurprisingly, the vegetarian half of the guest list was impressed by the quality of the food and the ambience of the premises - something diners have come to expect from Eight Treasures. But it was the non-vegetarian contingent that held the litmus test, with all agreeing unanimously that the food was exceptional. Whilst views were divided between 'tastes like any other good Chinese restaurant food' and 'tastes different but is equally as good', it was clear that these first-time diners were similarly impressed.

A few of these non-vegetarian diners whom VegVibe spoke to also mentioned that they would be coming again with other friends to sample the food in the near future.

This was not the first time that the restaurant had organised a special invitation dinner for guests. In 2009, it celebrated World Vegetarian Day by inviting a handful of vegetarian food bloggers to sample an equally-stunning spread of fine food and special culinary creations (read story). Eight Treasures Vegetarian Restaurant is located at 282A South Bridge Road, next to the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

ACRES going strong on all fronts

SINGAPORE, 6 October 2010: The Animal Concerns Research & Education Society (ACRES) had an eventful week - releasing the results of 3 successful sting operations late last week , organising a cruelty-free living exhibition at the main shopping belt here over the weekend, and appearing on a national news programme this morning as well.

Beginning with a press release on 30 September, ACRES described how its undercover officers posed as buyers in Hougang for the sale of a hedgehog (15 September), in Choa Chu Kang for the sale of a whole alleged tiger skin complete with the head and claimed to be from Sri Lanka (21 September), and in Serangoon for the sale of pieces of alleged tiger skins claimed to be from Thailand (22 September). The Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) responded immediately when alerted and the items have been seized for further investigation.

The hedgehog was offered for sale by a Chinese man for $150, the whole alleged tiger skin by an Indian man for $400 and the pieces of alleged tiger skins by a Chinese woman for $128 each. “These seizures together with the major seizures of alleged tiger parts in Singapore in March this year have put a huge dent in the illegal wildlife trade,” said Ms. Anbarasi Boopal, Director of ACRES Wildlife Crime Unit.

Moving on to more proactive initiatives, ACRES launched 'SHOP WISE, SAVE LIVES: say no to animal cruelty', the first-ever event in Singapore that promotes cruelty-free living and raises awareness about product testing on animals, factory farming and the cruelty behind some fashion products.

The 3-day event was held over the weekend from 1 to 3 October in the heart of Singapore and featured a mock supermarket display revealing the hidden cruelty behind the production of some toiletries, cosmetics, household products and fashion items while offering the many cruelty-free, animal-friendly alternatives available.

Members of the public had the chance to try out and purchase cruelty-free products at a discount, brought in by leading brands such as The Naturally Better Company, Lemongrass House, Terra Plana and Bud Cosmetics, to kickstart their new cruelty-free lifestyle. A free iPhone application which lists non-animal tested products and Singapore’s first-ever Cruelty-Free Pocket Shopping Guide produced by ACRES were made available as well.

The guide lists cruelty-free brands and the exact locations their products can be purchased in Singapore. These brands have been approved by the BUAV’s Humane Cosmetic Standard or Humane Household Product schemes and often feature a “Leaping Bunny logo” on the products.

Finally, Louis Ng, Executive Director of ACRES, appeared on Primetime Morning, a weekday news programme that airs every morning on Channel NewsAsia. In the five minute segment (watch clip), the hosts of the show interviewed Louis who gave a brief overview of the illegal wildlife trade and reiterated the need for the community at large to work harder to stop this, especially in Singapore.

ACRES continues to live up to its mission of creating "a caring and socially responsible society where animals are treated as sentient beings and where the environment is preserved for future generations”.