Meet Society's Next Generation Trend-Setters
Nikolai David Kea
“You can fail at what you don’t want, so you might as well take a chance on doing what you love.” This quote from actor Jim Carrey gave Nikolai David Kea the push he needed to pursue a full‑time career in music. We got a glimpse into his hard‑nosed determination when he turned up for this photo shoot at 5am after pulling an all-nighter at the recording studio.
Currently working on his first single, Paper Heart, a soulful ballad about heartbreak and how easily modern relationships die, Nikolai aspires to create pop music with an indie folk influence that is relatable and meaningful to his listeners. The singer-songwriter writes his own lyrics and is a big fan of local singing sensation Gentle Bones, whom he wishes to collaborate with one day.
“I’m no one special,” the son of society face Tanny Kea humbly explains. “At the end of the day, I’m just a boy dreaming of making music.” And with youth on his side and passion in his heart, Nikolai gives the camera one last brooding look before dashing back to the recording studio to continue doing what he loves best.
She might only be 21 years old, but Chloe Ng’s style has already made waves on the fashion scene in Singapore. The streetwear aficionado knows her stuff, strutting into the studio for this photo shoot in a pair of thigh-high sock boots by Vetements and a fanny pack from Louis Vuitton’s highly sought-after collaboration with Supreme casually slung over her shoulders.
The style maven is no stranger to the camera, having graced this year’s March cover of Singapore Tatler with her mother Nina, and working the season’s top looks with the style and grace of a seasoned model. Back in Singapore for an internship, the law student, who is currently studying at the University College London, spends most of her time catching up with friends and hanging out with her mother whom she is very close to. The pair regularly swaps clothes and can be found diving into each other’s closets and borrowing each other’s bags.
Lucky for Chloe, Nina understands. “We have a mutual agreement when it comes to sharing clothes,” she tells us. “I’m really lucky because my mother is so stylish.” Well, the apple truly doesn’t fall far from the tree.
With mum Belinda Chua helming high-end jewellery store Flower Diamond Boutique, it is safe to say that luxury runs in Sabrina Ho’s veins. Her first foray into the jewellery sector was at the tender age of 12 when she was brought in to consult with designers on the kind of jewellery she liked. Although she was too young to articulate much detail or the appropriate industry terminology, it was clear she knew what she liked, citing moons, hearts and stars as her favourite motifs.
Now, slightly over a decade later, the 24-year-old business and marketing graduate is excited to join the family business next year. “My mum does everything herself, so I want to help out with PR and coming up with events and activities for customers,” Sabrina explains. Right now, she is working with a friend on a jewellery collection aimed at a younger audience. Think sleek minimal pieces in precious metals with less crystals and diamonds. But what she lacks in bling, she makes up for in edginess. Expect this jewellery maestro to create in-trend items such as chokers and long statement earrings.
Currently a trainee solicitor at Central Chambers Law Corporation, it is hard to imagine the poised and elegant Vanessa Ng in anything but her courtroom garb. The 22-year-old begs to differ though. “I think there are two different sides to me. There are days when I like to look absolutely classic and sophisticated, but then there are days when all I want to do is lounge around in baggy clothes.”
As a lawyer, she admits that there is a dress code to adhere to, so there is nothing much that she can experiment with. On a daily basis, she looks toward her long-time style icon Coco Chanel for inspiration, and veers towards ladylike pieces and heels. Outside of work, she tries to experiment with her style, injecting daring flashes of neon and experimental silhouettes. She favours tailored pieces by Prada and Miu Miu for her sophisticated side and fashion‑forward pieces by Louis Vuitton and Gucci to supplement the fun and daring side of her dual personality.
But sometimes, the two worlds collide. “I do have a few pairs of MC Hammer pants though!” she quips. “I try to wear them to the office on weekends when the dress code isn’t as strict.”