Just after the autumn/winter collections hit the stores and before the holiday collections debut, a special collection emerges on the Thai fashion scene.
BFS Capsule Project for Paragon & Emporium, a new fashion campaign that is set to be an annual event, has just been introduced this past week, bringing together 10 Thai brands of the Bangkok Fashion Society (BFS) to design an exclusive collection for Paragon and Emporium.
The monochrome-themed collection features a few pieces from each brand, all in black and white, and each brand only releases 100 items for this collection. Needless to say, most of the pieces were hungrily snapped up by fashion lovers on the very first day. The participating brands were Asava, Disaya, Greyhound, Issue, Kloset, Milin, Munchu's, Senada, Tu'i and Vikteerut, and this is the first time that all of them worked together on one collection.
Achara Umpujh, executive vice-president at The Mall, explained that the monochrome theme makes it easier for consumers to mix and match items from different brands.
"In this collection, you can come up with 30 different looks. Thai fashion lovers like to mix and match - they don't really wear one brand from top to toe. Having a theme colour makes it more convenient for them to match items across the brands to create a look that suits them the most. I also think black and white is timeless and versatile," she said.
The chosen brands, Achara said, are among the strongest Thai labels in the fashion industry today, with years of experience and proven success. They have been a part of Emporium and Siam Paragon's Thai designer zone for years and each has secured a solid fan base. It is not rare to see new arrivals sold out within a day, according to Achara.
Each brand comes up with one key look for this collection, but the pieces can be worn with items from other brands without looking mismatched. There is virtually every style - from Senada's girly blouse and Milin's sexy top to Issue's boyish sweater, plus a furry little bag by Tu'i and shoes by Greyhound.
Polpat Asavaprapha, the head of BFS, said that while the society has been involved in many collaboration projects in the past, this is a remarkable step.
"Collaboration campaigns help us, as designers, move forward and come up with new creative ideas. I have been involved in this campaign from the beginning, and I feel that the theme is not a big challenge. The most challenging thing in this campaign was to make sure that all the 10 brands were ready for launch on the same day, and that required a lot of planning," he said.
Achara said that Thai fashion brands are now very popular among tourists, especially those from Asian countries. When she wears Thai brands abroad, she is often stopped and asked where she brought them from.
"This goes to show that in terms of quality and design, Thai designers are just as good as global brands," she said. "The growth in the Thai designer zone at both Paragon and Emporium has been very impressive - last year, our Thai designer zone saw a 54% increase in revenue. Thai designer brands are loved by those who want something unique and new, and this campaign is just the right push to make the market vibrant."
Polpat added that a campaign like this serves to stimulate the industry.
"The designers have to work hard to design good products, while the department store has to think about the campaign and how to attract customers. The customers, meanwhile, enjoy the vibrancy of the shopping scene, and are treated to a wider range of choices. It's a win-win situation for everyone involved."
The BFS Capsule Project is available exclusively at Paragon and Emporium, with limited items on offer.