Tombol, is one of the latest local jewellery brands to hit the market, which focuses especially on crafting beautiful butang (button) to complement the dashing baju melayu.
For the discerning gentlemen, Tombol’s flagship Butang Baju Melayu collection is set to inspire boldness and awe. The brand’s target market is the modern Malaysian looking for an understated, elegant approach to accessories when complementing their traditional garb. Whether classic or contemporary, Tombol’s collection of timeless pieces will be sure to make your traditional garb stand out amidst the ebb and flow of trends.
Although Raya this year was muted due to the ongoing pandemic raging through the country, that doesn’t mean we can’t celebrate and look good for ourselves. Or, we could just invest in the looks we want to be used for next year’s festivities, which will hopefully be more grand than ever. And unlike buying clothing in which you might be afraid you’d outgrow them, accessories like the exquisite buttons made by Tombol can last you way longer and be paired with a lot more outfits as well.
Tombol was founded by Chan Wey Yie, who was exposed to the realm of fine jewellery from an early age, as his family was involved in the trade of jewellery. Over the years, his own passion for beautiful craftsmanship and fine pieces grew, which eventually led to him venturing out on his own. “My early exposure provided me with a solid foundation and understanding of the entire value chain and product line of a fine jewellery business,” shares Wei Yie.
We recently got a hold of Wey Yie and asked him a bit more about the local jewellery brand.
How did the idea to establish tombol come about?
The idea for Tombol surfaced after speaking to several close friends as well as customers in the jewellery industry. During these conversations, we realised that there was a demand for subtler and more modern Butang Baju Melayu designs which were not properly being catered to. Having identified that gap in the market, we decided to launch Tombol with a flagship collection that embodied a more contemporary feel.
The brand itself developed as an exploration into and discovery of our Malaysian heritage, thus our designs draw inspiration from local traditions, and in such a way, pay tribute to our national landscape. Through our distinct designs, we hope to add diversity to the country’s rich design ecosystem.
What are you hoping to achieve through the brand?
The humble button is often left as a “by-the-way” afterthought in tailoring an ensemble. Consumers hunting for a festive outfit usually precede their search with textile, motif and measure of cloth – leaving the button towards the tail-end of their quest, which we’re looking to change.
Our designs imbue local tradition with a contemporary edge and aim to redefine what luxury means in today’s market. With a focus on high-quality materials and sleek designs, we hope to put buttons at the forefront (no pun intended) of attires.
We aim to reflect and cater to the contemporary tastes of the local jewellery market. We continue to differentiate our brand and provide diversity of choice through our passion for beautiful designs and masterful craftsmanship. We aim to serve as a unique addition to the current jewellery market.
Here’s a closer look at a few of the designs and colour options available from Tombol:
What sets your product apart from others in the market?
The brand differentiates itself by focusing on modern contemporary designs that are complemented by masterful craftsmanship. Giorgio Armani once said, “Elegance is not about being noticed, it’s about being remembered.” Our contemporary design philosophy ensures our masterpieces make not only a lasting impression, but the right impression, on whomever you meet.
Our products are crafted in silver palladium, a lustrous silvery-white precious metal that is hard, lightweight, and resistant to tarnishing compared to sterling silver. Our collections are also adorned with semi-precious stones such as onyx, pink opal, and jasper, rather than glass crystals. Additionally, our natural gemstones are hand selected and carefully matched against the collection’s designs to produce a range of carefully coordinated colours. The stones and materials used are also submitted to stringent quality tests, ensuring our creations are of the highest calibre.
Plus, we’re truly local and the team comprises skilled craftspeople, including CADCAM (computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing) designers, filers, gem setters and jewellery polishers. By leveraging on the team’s collective years of experience and expertise in fine jewellery, we guarantee an impeccably designed ensemble of masterpieces.
Share some of the progress and milestones the brand have achieved thus far
Tombol initially launched with five signature designs of Butang Baju Melayu during Raya season this year. Since then, we have increased our product offerings to include Butang Baju Johor. We were honoured to collaborate with local jewellery designer JimJewellery, where we had the opportunity to combine our ideas to create an exquisite collection.
What are some of the future pans in store for Tombol?
We look forward to increasing our product offerings into tudung pins and brooches following our modern contemporary design philosophy. The aim is to diversify our products to provide our customers with a variety of choices in the market.
We also hope to collaborate with fashion designers from the likes of Alia Bastamam and Jovian Mandagie as we would like to serve the market with contemporary accessories that complement traditional outfits.
Check out the Tombol collection at SUEN Jewellers in Bangsar, or via the brand’s website