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Fashion

Inside The Eclectic Home Of A 'Frenchaporean Auntie'

Playful fashion accessories that challenge conventions of shape, colour and finish take on a whole new meaning in the eclectic, tchotchke-filled abode of independent fashion PR consultant/"Frenchaporean auntie" Sandra Cameron.

“This chest is pretty much the first thing you would see when you step into my apartment so I want people to ‘get it’ right away. It’s covered in a million things and you’ll see similar motifs repeated throughout my house. I’m a Pisces so I love anything that’s fish-shaped; I also love cats.   The little plastic mice are from a kids’ store and are displayed because it’s the Year Of The Rat. The Chinese takeaway box is actually a Christmas ornament. In the back is a traditional Burmese wooden doll while the two thermos flasks were bought in Singapore… In my home, no table is left empty and I think it’s a reflection of me.   I buy the decorative pieces in my home from anywhere and I try to give them a purpose. When the Year Of The Rat is over, I will change it to something that reflects the new Zodiac animal. I’m also very superstitious so I like to collect things in the shape of hands or eyes to ward off evil.”   Hermes Reponse sterling silver earrings (on gnome figurine), double ring (on goldfish figurine) and necklace (on table), Hermes
“My husband Peter and I have lived in this rented apartment for two years – we moved in in November 2018 after we had to leave our previous place that went en bloc. Yes, it is very old, but it has a lot of charm and character and is very unusual for Singapore. We cannot modify the place at all, but we try to make the best out of it.   When we first moved here in 2003, we lived in a super modern condo with Phillipe Starck fixtures, nonsense like a wine fridge and a private lift lobby, and black and white furniture from the likes of Kartell and B&B Italia. The place had very few objects around and I never felt comfortable in there. I always felt that it was very clinical. It looked like an office almost. It was fashionable to be minimalist then, but we eventually decided that it was not for us.   Finding the perfect home is definitely all about character. I can forget about the modern condo with stainless steel and glass. In this home, we have this huge patio with a fountain and so many plants. People have said that it reminds them of the south of France or somewhere in Europe.   I am definitely not a minimalist and I always have a lot of things going through my brain all the time and I think how I decorate my tables is a reflection of how my brain is always on and of my curiosity – I always love to discover new artists, designers, neighbourhoods et cetera. I am also very curious. When you’re not curious, that’s the end of you.”   Cameron wears 4 Moncler Simone Rocha nylon and down coat, Moncler, and her own earrings
“I wanted a place that reminded me of my childhood homes in North Africa and France where there were so many things around, dusting took forever. My parents hosted a lot of parties and setting the table was a big deal. My birthday parties didn’t have things like goodie bags and entertainment like bouncy castles. It was all about good friends, good food and fun.   Children were allowed to run everywhere and open every room door. What I like is not a show flat, but a home that shows some quirkiness, some madness and fantasy, and definitely a sense of humour. When you come here, you can touch everything and sit anywhere. This is not a museum.   I have so many things lying around the apartment that once, a yoga teacher who came to conduct a class actually told me that there was no way I would be able to practice properly in the place with my eye distracted by so many things around me. But I proved him wrong – I just focused on one area that had fewer things and it was okay.”   Birdcage brass and strass novelty bag with accompanying suede pouch, Chanel  
“On a weekly basis, we rotate or change the huge linen bed sheets that we use to cover the grey couches from our original minimalistic apartment with. As I’ve said many times, we are not those people anymore so we bought a lot of beautiful linen bed sheets in colours like indigo and sage green and I would switch them every week to create a new decor, getting candles in new colours and changing the cushion covers and vases displayed.”   Peekaboo Essentially calf leather fabric tote, Fendi
“You can come here and ask me to create just about any decor theme and I would most likely be able to – Mexican, North African, toile de Jouy, a specific colour, a kid’s party, hearts, anything – because I love to buy different accessories to dress up the house. It might sound a little childish, but I like this sense of innocent play… It’s a bit like never taking down one’s Christmas decorations so it’s Christmas all year round.   I am definitely inspired by my travels and how people live at home in other countries; the fabrics and colours and textures that they use. I would get influences from these trips and besides bringing home souvenirs, I’d be drawing ideas from the places we visit like hotels, restaurants, and homes of locals who invite us into their homes.”   Calfskin pumps, Tod’s
“On the shelf showcased above, for example, there are vintage tea and coffee canisters from the UK, a very traditional French tea canister from Hediard, a Moroccan teapot, Chinese porcelain cats, the candleholder that’s very old as well as new items made to look vintage such as the paperweight shaped like hands. The gold box on the lower shelf is actually an accordion that doesn’t work 100 per cent, but I love it: this super-French, down to-earth musical instrument.”   2.55 goatskin handbag, metal, resin and strass brooch (in dish), metal and resin brooch (on table), and metal and strass necklace (on teapot), Chanel
“On the shelf showcased above, for example, there are vintage tea and coffee canisters from the UK, a very traditional French tea canister from Hediard, a Moroccan teapot, Chinese porcelain cats, the candleholder that’s very old as well as new items made to look vintage such as the paperweight shaped like hands. The gold box on the lower shelf is actually an accordion that doesn’t work 100 per cent, but I love it: this super-French, down to-earth musical instrument.”   Mini Pocket cotton and leather tote, Burberry
“The perfect home is definitely all about character. I love to go on a treasure hunt and find items that not many people would look at. As with fashion, one needs to have a good eye. I don’t really like going for the same stuff that everyone else is going for.   I want someone to come to my place and say, ‘Sandra, I see you in your apartment.’ I would be very disappointed if I met someone who dressed well and has an interesting style and then went to his or her home only to find it to be really boring or has no character. I don’t understand how that’s possible. Fashion and the style of your home are connected.”   (From top) Metal necklace with resin pearls, stones and crystals, lambskin bustier top with matching belt, and calfskin and fabric boot, Dior
“Also I don’t think that what I have in the house and that I find beautiful has to do with how much I paid for it. For example, today I went to Hock Siong and bought items ranging between $2 and $80 and I was super happy. Going there makes me happy because it always makes me wonder about what I am going to find there.   I’m not saying that I have good taste, but it’s all about having an interesting eye. I like to mix things together – I have displayed things that I bought from a kid’s store next to items that I bought from a proper decor store along with stuff I brought back from France or travel souvenirs. I have pieces from artist friends. We blend many styles under this roof.   I also need to tell you that I’m not a very good cook so I practice hard on my table decor to distract guests from how the food is not that great. Of course, having plenty of drinks helps too.”   (Opposite) Off The Grid nylon bucket hat, Gucci. The Fringe Pouch nappa leather clutch, Bottega Veneta