An interview with me focusing on Stylites at elitesem.com as part of their expert interview series. Elitesem is a marketing company with HR practices that seem very attractive, including flex-time and salary transparency. This article from entrepreneur.com has some interesting elite SEM This company is ranked No. 1 in our large-company category on our Top Company Cultures list.
This focuses mostly on Stylites as a Chinese street fashion blog and my endeavors as a consultant and doesn’t really touch on my latest ventures related to shopping in Shanghai and eco fashion.
The top Shanghai vintage and secondhand shop, Pawnstar, just came out with some new fliers:
Our message to Chinese customers is that people have way too much stuff, so there is no reason to buy something brand new especially when you consider the environmental impact of the fashion industry. Instead of paying retail every time or just wearing something that is overly recognizable since it is from the latest season, women (and men) should consider shopping on consignment. At the moment, we are more-or-less the major option that is available as the Shanghai vintage and secondhand store par excellence.
We want people to give up that urge – that pressure – to always be seen in the latest trend and start incorporating vintage accessories with designer pieces that may be a season or two old. Hey, for people who really will only wear the latest trend and wear it just once, please just bring those items to us!
This time long-time collaborator Woopin brought Beijing Design Week and managed to get the Four Seasons Hotel on the official schedule.
Thanks to reporter Dominic Ngai from That’s Shanghai for coming by to the Clement and interviewing Jane. Click more to see the story.
Yiwen Studio is not a brand that gets talked a huge amount by Western fashion media, bloggers, etc. Former actress Cao Yiwen started her brand about five years ago and has a very loyal following of stylish, affluent ladies in Beijing and Shanghai, where she has boutiques in Sanlitun and Julu Road in the Former French Concession, respectively. She has also shown at Shanghai Fashion Week.
Her pop-up at the Four Seasons Hotel Beijing just started. Click below for more photos. Continue reading
Today is the last day of the Woopin pop-up at the Four Seasons Hotel Beijing.
Creators Jia Li and Gao Yin knew that Children’s Day was June 1 so they curated a great selection of items for the little ones. Head there right now for a gift.
Designers Jia Li and Gao Yin of Woopin return to the Four Seasons Hotel Beijing a second time with yet another exciting pop-up.
You can see some pics of their studio here and here are photos of the last pop-up.
Here is the Bifu by Chen Xing pop-up being set-up.
And some photos from his latest fashion shoot. Chen Xing is taking off this time as he again brings a chic pop-up lobby of the Four Seasons Hotel Beijing. The fashion show for his latest collection will also be the first event on Opus Terrace this year. It will be taking place on April 9.
Above is a dress by Haus of MoHawk (Ireland) currently displayed at the Four Seasons Hotel Beijing as part of a special exhibition of designer pieces that appeared at London Fashion Week in a show by House of iKons. Click to see more pictures and the press release.
Some coverage of the recent pop-up Zamani x Rechenberg pop-up at the Four Seasons includes this interview with founder Matin Zaman from Jing Daily. Matin explains that Chinese are just now getting into having a nice space to live in. He also notes that “people don’t like the rugs that are used in China. People like brand new things. Therefore, in our exhibition we’ve been more successful with the modern pieces,” and that his role is to educate on the “difference between hand-spun wool and machine-spun wool, or what’s the difference between chemical dye and natural dye, or what’s the difference between doing a double knot and single knot” so that people understand why they are paying so much.
Coverage of the pop-up also appeared in the Beijinger as well as here and here.
Together with House of Ikons, the Four Seasons Hotel present an opportunity for Beijing-based fashion designers to explore the possibility of participating in London Fashion Week. If you’re interested in learning more througb speaking with House of Ikons founder Savita Kaye, stop by the hotel on Friday afternoon!
This is part of an exhibition that will be in the hotel from March 23 till 31 that showcases some of the gowns and shows that House of Ikons brought to London Fashion Week over the past year.
Click more for the details.
Literally on top of the Xintiandi subway exit sits the former Lafayette Cinema, which will be the new venue for The HUB, Asia’s leading premium fashion trade fair.
This truly fantastic venue is now called the Art & Design Centre, at 323 Middle Fuxing Road. This is definitely the most beautiful large-scale venue in the Xintiandi region. One of László Hudec’s masterpieces, the building first opened in 1933 and was renovated again in recent years and has played host to quite a few fashion events, including one by Louis Vuitton, and was also the site for the Kick the Gong Around market in 2014. The HUB will be happening there from April 9 to 11, the same time as Shanghai Fashion Week.
As we try to seek out a direction in the field of upcycling fashion that makes sense for Pawnstar, I have poured through the China fashion blogs, eco-fashion related websites, pinterest etc. to get an idea for what is already happening in this field. I thought I would share some of what I found related to designers and others in China that are using leftover factory fabrics waste, bamboo, discarded clothing, as well as recycled and sustainably sourced materials to create new fashions.
Click below to see some of the sites that I’ve found.
I’m going to attempt an explanation of why Stylites seems to be all about Pawnstar these days. At fashion parties in Beijing or on terraces of art deco apartments in Shanghai, people often ask what became of Stylites. This site is still known as the first street style blog, mostly about hipsters in the Beijing hutongs. But I haven’t photographed the style tribes of China for a while, though friends and fashionistas say I should have continue. Maybe I got tired of it. Maybe the subject of China and style is too overhyped with the myriad local fashion designers, KOLs, and platforms that promote them. The freestanding blog also seems less viable in the age of mobile everything and social media: wechat and instagram trumped blogs like stylites. I didn’t come up with a way to truly capitalize on Stylites when it was most publicized around 2009. Now there’s no way to compete with the influence of the mega-KOLs such as Gogoboi, Leaf Greener, Peter Xu, etc., etc.
Stylites now contains a record of all the projects on which I’m working. And that’s exactly it. Here you can find information on the pop-ups that I’ve been doing at the Four Seasons Hotel Beijing – click on Stylites Projects to the right and this intro to the pop-up program from the Four Seasons site as well as their pinterest board – as well as what I’ve done for other clients like American Rag Cie and The HUB. The project that perhaps most excites me at the moment is something else though, something that I have found challenging to explain here.
From Stylites to Pawnstar
Pawnstar is a project that I have been working on in China with my wife. For me, Pawnstar is about doing a business that relates to fashion but at the same addresses the frustration I get from being involved with fashion. What bothers me is the waste produced by the fashion industry and its numbing seasonal fashion cycle. Being surrounded by people who seem to revel in this addiction to change and newness feels very much at odds with my values. I needed to do something with a more eco or puritanical dimension to it. This has led me to move toward a business focused on secondhand, consignment and resale. This business is now called Pawnstar but it remains in the research and trial period.
I had the opportunity to see the showroom of Woopin, the Beijing design studio that organized one of the most attractive pop-ups that has appeared at the Four Seasons. Their pop-up was in September and October last year and became one of the major destinations during Beijing Design Week.