The inaugural Artbox SG is coming to an end, with this weekend being the last few days during which Singaporeans can jalan the Bayfront area for goodies. Given the hype that had been built up on Artbox, there was no way we could have missed out on it.
While others Singaporeans trawled the aisles for food and gifts, we decided to speak to the entrepreneurs running the show. These are some of their stories.
1. HUSH Candle
Founded by Nicole and Chelsea, HUSH Candle is a small batch candle company in Singapore. All the candles are hand poured using premium soy wax and therapeutic grade essential oils.
“Chelsea and I always loved scented candles and home fragrances, and we realised that there was a lack of good quality candles at affordable prices,” co-founder Nicole shares. “Cheaper candles smelled artificial and weren’t quite what we were looking for, so we decided to try making our own candles using essential oils and the rest is history.”
“As entrepreneurs, the journey has been challenging but still very fulfilling.”
2. Plain Supplies
The entrepreneurial couple who raised S$25,000 for a minimalist watch, Poh Shen and Mandelena Koh were seen addressing curious customer queries. The pair founded Plain Supplies selling minimalistic accessories such as bracelets and watches both online and at local creator markets.
If you didn’t manage to snag one of their stylish products, don’t worry, because Mandelena revealed that Plain Supplies would be at Artbox SG again this weekend.
Airbnb for home dining BonAppetour was also spotted at Artbox SG where they were selling edible terrariums.
Speaking to their Bonappetons, I found out that the startup is rolling out new food experiences, such as their “SIN in Singapore Underground Bar Crawl” as well the new “The Great Singapore Food Tour”.
“We will be visiting 3 different Michelin awarded stalls to enjoy the food without having to queue for 2 hours!” shares country manager Charles Phua excitedly.
Natasya Chen is a full-time Graphic Designer and TicklePink is her passion.
“The story started with my love for accessories and jewellery, as well as the idea of having unique pieces that no one else in this world has.
Back in my NAFA days, I wanted to take on a jewellery class but unfortunately it was full. I told myself that no matter how I have to pursue making these pretty accessories someday.
Now that I have TicklePink, I can make my dream (and many others’ dreams) of having their own pieces come true. Besides, I have the best moments of shopping and I even got do my own accessories for free.”
5. The Juicy Way
With their counter lined with intriguingly hued drinks, this is one stall that you definitely would have seen at Artbox SG.
The brainchild of 3 friends or “Enthresiasts”, The Juicy Way is their way of expressing their passion for business and food innovation. All of their drinks are named after the Milky Way, from The Big Bang to Supernova and Aries.
“Our vision is to revolutionise and re-invent fresh fruit juices”, the co-founders shared. “All of our concoctions are our own creations and techniques, and we even held food-tasting sessions amongst our friends to create the optimal flavours.”
As the friends are students, they lack the budget to rent a fixed stall. So if you’re on the lookout for these enterprising trio and their creations, head down to Artbox or other events and bazaars around Singapore!
6. The Wicked Cream Co.
A cafe specialising in artisanal desserts and gourmet marshmallows, The Wicked Cream Co. was founded by Colin and Ecstee. All of the pair’s creations are based on simple foods they have been eating all their lives, but that they decided to give a twist to.
“It all started out by making our own homemade marshmallows for bbq parties with friends, when we still had our full time jobs,” shares Colin “Due to the great reception, we decided to try selling some at a flea market in NUS organised by Fleawhere.”
One of the obstacles early on was that people thought they were selling “soap or candles due to its shape and size. But after more exposure – about 6 months to 1 year – Singaporeans started recognising their brand.”
And yes, they’re at Artbox this weekend.
7. ExtraOrdinary Horizons
ExtraOrdinary Horizons is a social enterprise that empowers the entrepreneurs in the deaf community.
As director and founder – Lily – shared with me, they hope to create “an avenue where they can experience as the mainstream [entrepreneurs] do.”
As most deaf are good with crafts, ExtraOrdinary Horizons helps them on the retail aspect. The entrepreneurs receive 85% proceeds and the enterprise gets 15% for admin and education/training purposes.
“We also have a network of volunteers who wish to share their knowledge and expertise with these entrepreneurs. Recently UniSIM students came down to share about marketing,” she shares.
8. Tipsy Bull
Unfortunately I was unable to obtain a photo of the founders but I was still able to get in touch with them. Newly founded by Shane and Diana, the Tipsy Bull is a brand born from their passion.
“We have always loved grilled beef and have been doing this within our own circle of friends and families. Beef and whiskey is the perfect combination to us and our “Signature Whiskey Butter Sauce” and “Whiskey Foie Gras Compound Butter” are specially curated by us.
Artbox Singapore was the perfect opportunity for us to launch Tipsy Bull.”
An interesting thing is that the pair also runs 6oz Espresso Bar, an award-winning cafe in the CBD.
“Being in the F&B industry for over 6 years now, it is always exciting to turn ideas into reality,” Shane shares. “We value each of our team members and provide exciting opportunities to develop their skills outside work. Building team players in a fun and conducive environment is always our priority.”
The rainy weather has definitely the biggest obstacle so far, he reflected, but the turnout was still higher than expected. So if you’re hoping to grab some of their creations, remember to head down early this weekend!
Founded by couple Clement and Belle, Shohroom is a “showroom” for 3 of the major brands they carry, – Sparksfly, Wingman and Party squad. As Clement shared, “they specially curate and design gifts, products and service for the modern lifestyle.”
“2 years ago, my fiancé and I had a common goal which was to own a business together. Both of us had our own separate businesses and were spending less time together due to the difference our work.
Fast forward to the present, and we spend more time running the startup together. As we face constant challenges in the ever changing landscape of retail business, we hope that Singaporeans can be positive and supportive of our very own local brand.”
TLO is a clothing and apparel startup founded by a couple who wanted to share their love for quirky designs and Japanese characters. Everything is designed and named by the pair. Alongside clothing, they also sell quirky phone covers for anyone who enjoys a unique design or two.
Artbox SG is here in Singapore for one last weekend, so if you’re interested to meet some of the other amazing individuals running the show, it’s not too late. And before you leave, remember to grab a souvenir or two.
Featured Image Credit: Samantha Tay / Vulcan Post