KENG HOW & KAGE CHONG
MENSWEAR DESIGNERS, 34 & 32
In an age where unabashed self promotion is seen as confidence, the brothers swing in the opposite direction. Instead of waxing lyrical, they simply let their products speak for themselves. After three years of extensive studies Keng How and Kage launched Biro, a menswear label for individuals with a keen eye for detail and an appreciation for simplicity.
How much importance do you place on materials when it comes to design?
I don’t know about other designers but I think it’s the foremost thing. We spent a long time researching before we decided on Japan as a source for our fabrics. Only after choosing a particular material do we determine the process or visual design to use.
How do tradition and creativity play their parts in design?
Personally, tradition has to do with spending time honing your craft. Creativity comes in when you think about how you want your product to appear and how consumers will interact with it. So when tradition and creativity come together, you end up with something of quality. I believe this can be applied to watchmaking as well.
What do you think allows the Royal Oak to stand the test of time?
I think it’s its ability to constantly push boundaries that leads to its success, like the bold use of yellow gold in this collection for example. The watch manufacture is also obviously well-informed about what the consumers want. That’s a good edge.
FROM LEFT Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Selfwinding in 18k yellow gold case and bracelet with blue dial, $61,800 Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Selfwinding in 18k yellow gold case and bracelet with silver-toned dial, $61,800