Ask any ordinary person on the street and boro may be an unfamiliar term. However, for the folks over at FIN Crafted Goods, boro represents a way of life that is etched into the philosophy of their brand.
Simply translated as ‘ragged’ or ‘tattered’, boro is a technique that dates all the way back to the Edo period when peasants, who were too poor to afford lavish clothes, often patched up their worn out garments that would end up lasting them a lifetime or even longer (when it’s passed down to future generations).
Forming the core of their business philosophy over at FIN Crafted Goods, mottainai, or wasting nothing, is a forgotten value that they are trying to reinstate in this age where fast fashion is continuously dominating the consumer market.
Made up of husband-and-wife duo Fahmy and Erliana (pictured above) who quit their full-time jobs to follow their passion, FIN Crafted Goods started out selling aprons to cafes and restaurants. The company is now into its sixth year, but the couple divulged that they’d spent the first two years cafe-hopping – but not for reasons you would expect.
As I sat down for a chat with them, I learnt of the company’s humble beginnings — a time when they would go from door-to-door trying to sell their handmade aprons under the blazing sun. Now, they supply aprons to not only your favourite hipster cafes but to Michelin-starred restaurants as well.
Try looking out for them the next time you visit one!
When I visited their studio cum retail space, Fahmy was in the midst of patching up a pair of worn-out jeans and although it was still a work-in-progress, I took an immediate liking to it. Using the art of boro, the patchwork seemed to not only infuse new life into the jeans, but gave it a chic, street style as well.
Next time you’re thinking of getting a fresh pair, why not leave an old piece in the hands of Fahmy and Erliana who will fin it up for you instead?
In addition to jeans, oxford shirts are another popular item that customers frequently send in for fin-ing. Although it’s understandable that plain oxford shirts do get boring after some time, it is not viable to keep buying new ones.
Convinced that the world is unable to sustain this current trend of disposable fast fashion, FIN hopes to lessen wastage in their own little ways, one garment at a time.
When you send something over to FIN for repair or a revamp, you rarely know what you will get. Unlike customisations where customers get to decide how the end product looks like, over at FIN, trust and an element of surprise is what make their designs stand out.
This may seem like a risky venture for some, but regular customers will definitely tell you otherwise.
Another classic that FIN creates is their boro tote bags, which are handcrafted with carefully-sourced materials; all the while keeping sustainability, ethics and quality in mind.
I even learnt that some of these items are actually ‘dead stock’, meaning they are not in production anymore but Fahmy and Erliana still manage to get them from a personal supplier.
FIN has also had collaborations with Vans for custom boro designs of their sneakers. However, they are only available by pre-order and are not on sale at retail outlets. #
The current collection that Fahmy and Erliana were working on (pictured above) are only limited to 15 pairs per design as well. Talk about being exclusive!
Placing an emphasis on all elements, the shoelaces for each pair are personalised as well, all the way up to the aglet. You will definitely appreciate their attention to even the finest details when you put on a pair of these Vans.
If you are a sucker for limited edition goods (and when I say limited, I mean like only one in the world!), you will be excited to find out that every patchwork FIN does is unique to that piece.
Building on their philosophy of zero wastage, fabric remnants from aprons or tote bags are reused in each boro item. Therefore, no two designs will be a 100% similar.
Be it a tote or a pair of jeans restored at FIN, every item is handcrafted with the principle of mottainai in mind. After Joseph Schooling’s historic win at the Olympics, everyone has been chanting the mantra ‘support local talent’, but more than just words, put that into action by supporting the creative folks over at FIN Crafted Goods.
Remember, you will be making a statement against disposable fast fashion and saving the Earth at the same time.
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