Since becoming a global phenomenon and driving trend in fashion, streetwear and skate culture has evolved and changed. What was once a countercultural movement led by bands of kids with a post-punk went full 180 when it got co-opted by international luxury brands. Which is why it’s nice these days to see a new brand that goes back to simpler roots.
Enter See You At One, or SYAO for short. The impetus behind the brand, and its whole modus operandi, are a sense of humour and wit coupled with good product. The brand calls what it makes “fashionable clothing and paraphernalia with quality, thought and piss.” Part of the brand’s central appeal is high quality clothing, and it really comes from understanding that skaters in Singapore are a well-dressed bunch to begin with who expect clothes that look good and that can stand the trials of being smashed against concrete.
“We want to get past SYAO being just a skate brand because I think we do things quite artistically. We also love history and art. The street/skate label usually limits us because people already have a preconceived notion of what that is, and it’s usually compared to Supreme and Palace once you mention ‘skateboarding’. Everyone is subscribed to a high fashion vs. streetwear dichotomy and that’s not how we chart our positioning, especially at the prices we’re offering. We try to do our campaigns more cerebrally, even though our Instagram is still kinda for shits and giggles. Despite the fact that we’re doing drops instead of collections, we try to convey a concept every release.”
The brand’s first official drop is a triptych of ‘Loop’ trousers that base themselves off classic carpenter pants. The triptych in this instance represents the three fabric variations available: cloud, moss and floral versions that use lightweight cotton twill and denim. It’s outwardly simple, but deceptively hides detail and thought that’s gone into the design. There’s a signature rubber patch on the back, the trousers are finished with high quality Talon zippers – the kind of hardware you often find on designer denim, seven very pragmatic pockets sewn in, the hammer loop detail, and hammered buttons… all coming together to make for unassumingly easy pants.
Cheekier still are the Transmission hoodies – which slyly get their name from the idea of rainy seasons and communicable infections. The campaign images were, in fact, shot at Haw Par Villa, chosen for its “venereal initials”. SYAO may at heart be a brand created for and by skaters, but it claims an interest in bringing creative individuals together across communities to, as the brand puts it, “make cool shit happen” and “laugh their asses off while they’re at it.” That lighthearted way of thinking, along with the comfortable, straightforward and unpretentious clothes they’re making, make See You At One as a good a brand as any to get into the streetwear game with.