1) ONE SINGAPORE PORCELAIN PLATE
What: Arguably one of the most successful products by Supermama, these blue-and-white Japanese-made porcelain plates feature icons of Singapore from Lee Kuan Yew to the Merlion. They come in two sizes: 15 cm and 24cm.
The timelessness of the blue-and-white aesthetic as well as the chock-a-block inclusion of Singaporean elements make this plate a popular one for tourists and Singaporeans.
About 8,000 plates in both sizes have been sold so far. The series is in its fourth iteration and features 100 icons.
The first batch, depicting 65 Singapore icons, was first launched in 2013. Over the years, some icons have been dropped and replaced with others.
Price: $42 (15cm) and $82 (24cm)
Where: Supermama, 265 Beach Road
2) KUEH TUTU ERASER
What: This replica kicked off the “make traditional foods into cute souvenirs” trend in Singapore.
Launched by collaborating designers Winston Chai and Yong Jieyu in 2009, this eraser lools like tutu kueh, a steamed rice flour cake.
Because it is small and relatively inexpensive, it is popular as a keepsake or modest gift.
Price: $2.90 at The Farm Store; and $3.10 at Naiise
3) SINGLISH NOTEBOOK
What: You can write in this journal and pick up some Singlish along the way.
Words such as “cannot make it” or “horrigible” are printed with their definitions at the bottom of each page – which makes this notebook appealing to foreigners who want to learn the lingua franca or just plain amusing to the regular Singaporean.
It was designed in 2009 by designer John Chan for Atas, a local design collective. It comes in four colours.
The Farm Store’s brand manager Mabel Low says about 10,000 notebooks have been sold in the last eight years through the store’s portal.
Price: $32 at The Farm Store; and $34.30 at Naiise
4) ANG KU KUEH CUSHION
What: This cushion shaped like the traditional Chinese snack is a bestseller for product manufacturer Mekyrs. A total of 9,135 cushions have been sold since they went on sale two years ago.
5) PLAYGROUND SERIES BY HINIKA
What: In 2015, designer Jarrod Lim, creative director of Hinika, a Singapore-based furniture company, was one of the first to use nostalgic playgrounds as motifs in his designs. Of course, now, images of these playgrounds have been used on tote bags, T-shirts and postcards, among others.
He created a rocker modelled after the iconic Dragon-shaped playground and fashioned a candle holder inspired by The Pelican in Dover Road, which was demolished in 2012. The Elephant playground finds a new form as a wooden piggy bank.
Price: Pelican Candle Holder, $69;The Elephant Money Box, $89; The Dragon Rocking Horse, starts at $449
6) KOPI BAG MUG
What: This rectangular mug is designed to hold drinks in plastic bags, a common packaging for takeaway beverages in kopitiams. Designed by a four-person team from design studio Stuck, the mug features a green floral motif that typically appears on the traditional coffee cup.
7) MEAL DIVINATION STICKS
What: It can be tough trying to make up your mind for lunch in a foodie paradise such as Singapore.
Can’t decide on what to eat? Ask the Meal Divination Sticks.
Designed by The Outliers, this product is inspired by the divination sticks used in Buddhist temples where devotees ask a sacred oracle for answers.
Instead of little numbers, there are stickers with names of hawker dishes such as bak chor mee and nasi lemak.
Put the sticks in the holder and pick one at random or shake it until one falls out of the holder.
8) SINGLISH PASSPORT NOTEBOOK
What: Don’t mix up your actual passport with this notebook that looks strikingly similar to the Singapore travel document.
One has the words “Best Kaki” (Best Partner), while the other has the “Most Gungho” (Most Invincible) on the front. The notebook is designed by Singlish Mamashop.
Price: $7 each
Where: Naiise, go to naiise.com
9) FIFTY-TWO’S DECK OF PLAYING CARDS
What: Social media agency Protocol designed a deck of playing cards, each featuring an illustration of a Singapore icon, such as Housing Board flats, the Supertrees at Gardens by the Bay and the ERP gantry.
The fun is in the ironic subtext. For example, the late founding prime minister of Singapore Lee Kuan Yew is the ace of spades, while blogger Amos Yee is featured on one of the joker cards.
10) MERLION CHOUCHOU
What: The Merlion is a popular inspiration for tourists, but this is the first time the beloved scaly fish-lion has been made into a plushie.
Mr Donn Koh, who co-founded design studio Stuck, designed the original Merlion ChouChou in 2015, just in time for SG50. A chouchou refers to a pillow that a child is attached to.
New versions with different faces have since sprung up and are sold at design retail store Red Republic.
BONUS: KOPI HANDBAG