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Food good enough to wear

Chris Fussner, an American businessman, and illustrator Kristal Melson wearing the laksa and chilli crab T-shirts (PHOTO: DJULIAN CHNG)

Publication Date : 04-07-2012

 

If you love eating the local dish, now you can buy its matching T-shirt. And from a brand aptly named Nom Nom, to boot.

The brainchild of American businessman Chris Fussner, who has been in Singapore almost all his life, the 1½-month-old label sells two T-shirt designs: laksa and chilli crab.

A nasi lemak version will be available this month.

Fussner, 24, says: "I love food - a lot. I was talking with friends one day and the idea for a T-shirt came up. It just stuck with me for about a year, to the point that I had to do something about it.

"Singapore has a really great gastronomic culture and the whole idea is to share this with everyone."

He collaborated with Singapore illustrator Kristal Melson, who came up with the tantalising drawings done in marker pens for the T-shirts.

While local hawkers spend years perfecting their food, she took just two or three days to whip up her illustrated dishes.

Melson, 29, says: "I try to picture my ideal version of the dish. When coming up with an illustration for the nasi lemak T-shirt, I added more sambal and ikan bilis."

The T-shirts, at S$29 (US$23) each, have been on sale online (nomnom.myshopify.com) since late May and are shipped worldwide. They are printed on demand, whenever there are orders and over 20 have been sold - mainly to buyers here.

Fussner, who also co-founded a men's clothing line, Sifr, that retails here and in countries such as Indonesia and the United States, is optimistic that sales will pick up further. He hopes to eventually sell the T-shirts - now shipped in envelopes - in brown wax paper packaging which mimic local takeaway packets.

"There have always been the Merlion T-shirts and the 'I Love Singapore' ones. Nom Nom could be the next tourist T-shirt," he adds.

 

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