[EXCLUSIVE] CLEO Bachelor Hugh Koh Chats About Dressing Khalid + Other Pestle And Mortar Collabs

Hugh’s image from his Instagram; Khalid courtesy of Urbanscapes.

Starting a Malaysian streetwear brand from scratch, building it from the ground up and then finally getting it on the world stage is no easy feat. On top of everything that’s involved, it’s not every day that you get to dress a world-famous celebrity too — it takes a certain level of cool, as well as marketing and branding genius. But with the team behind Pestle and Mortar, it’s certainly no surprise. The brand, since its inception in 2010, has been the go-to for the coolest kids in KL. You’ll love, for one, their slew of brand collabs and iconic tees.

RELATED: Pestle & Mortar Joins Forces With Royal Selangor For Next Level Streetwear

On Sunday, 4 Nov 2018, Khalid performed at KL Live as one of the Urbanscapes showcases for this year — and he came out onstage wearing none other than Pestle & Mortar. Naturally, we needed to know how this collab came about!

Here’s how CLEO’s ex-Bachelor (who was featured way back in 2014) Hugh Koh comes in — he’s the driving force behind the Malaysian-made streetwear label. As a Co-founder and Creative Director for Pestle & Mortar, Hugh Koh was able to give #TeamCLEO the inside scoop on how it came together.

This was the baby-faced Hugh that CLEO featured in 2014 for CLEO’s Most Eligible Bachelors 2014.

For one, he told us that Pestle & Mortar were the ones who were approached!

“About two weeks ago Khalid’s stylist Ann-Marie (IG: mstr_of_disguise) got in touch with us via Instagram. She mentioned she wanted him to be rocking a Malaysian brand for the upcoming show,” Hugh told us. “Ann-Marie then made some selects via our website on some potential styles she was leaning towards. The timing for us was perfect as we’re launching our new collection this weekend,” he continued.

So how did Khalid’s management choose which pieces to wear? “We not only provided the items she requested for but also some unreleased key pieces from the collection,” said Hugh.

Obviously, this was something that the P&M team was ecstatic about. We wondered how it felt to be approached by Khalid’s team. “Leading up to the show, the entire team and myself were extremely excited to see if any of our pieces would be worn by him,”  Hugh said.

RELATED: The 5 Things That Made Khalid Live in Malaysia So Much “Better”

In the end, Khalid rocked it out on stage with an iconic piece from Pestle & Mortar’s collection, plus some outerwear.

We wanted to know how it felt as a brand owner. His honest thoughts? “The feeling of him coming out onto the stage rocking our gear was unreal. It’s really nice to know he resonated with the brand and as well as the pieces he wore,” Hugh said. “He’s got a cool look, therefore we feel the pieces really came together. Whether it be Khalid or one of our customers, we still get excited whenever we see people rockin’ our gear — especially the older pieces,” he continued.

“The feeling of [Khalid] coming out onto the stage rocking our gear was unreal … It’s really nice to know he resonated with the brand and also the pieces he wore.” 

Riding on a high, we asked how it felt when it all came together. “We’re celebrating our 8th year as a brand and whenever moments like this come through, it makes the journey so much sweeter,” said Hugh.

On a recent launch, P&M collaborated with leading tech brand, Acer. The Acer x Pestle And Mortar collection is available here.