Supermama is many
things at once – a store, an artist residency studio, a platform
for designers, a space for people to escape to – but it is at its
core a labor of love. Named “Supermama” as a tribute to Meiling,
Edwin's wife, the store began its life when the couple quit their
respective jobs, sold their four-room flat and dreamed up the idea of
taking a one-year sabbatical. Like many other Singaporeans, Edwin and
Meiling were sick of the tediousness of a life without a bigger
And what is this elusive "bigger purpose", you ask?
No one can say for sure really. Everyone has his or her unique path. The roads diverge and we each embark on the route of our choice, and for better or worse, that is our journey.
Supermama is Edwin and Meiling's journey. The flagship space at Seah Street is an oasis of peace and quietness. Hand-picked products from around the world are displayed on beautiful shelves. Bowls. Ties. Notebooks. Plants. A disparate catalog of things that, you suspect, are made with heart. And love.
Unlike most shops, Supermama is not out to make money. It sounds strange whenever you hear something like this - it feels elitist, pretentious, naive - but when I talk to Edwin, I understand fully what he means. Surely there are things that are far more important than money. Like good design. Like beauty. Like life.
Just as Edwin said, "There are alot of decisions to make [in design]. After your last decision, a chair becomes a chair. So to me, design is like life. If you are able to make your choices in a beautiful way, you can come up with a very beautiful design."
Just as in life.