What We Say about Hedi Slimane’s SLP 2013 FW Collection

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Dolce Gabbana vs Saint Laurent Paris as Princesses with Walking Dead | Source : Weibo @Dipsy

It is no doubt that this collection is controversial. Let’s see how Chinese fashion insiders talk about Hedi Slimane’s latest show in Paris fashion Week.

A:  SLP’s design is totally for groupies. B: (Rolling his eyes):” Come on, it’s for the old groupies, now even the younger ones won’t wear this.

Tang Shuang. Senior Market Editor of Numero China

I scorned SLP, but after straying into REEL shop before the Spring Festival, I have bought a short-sleeved T-shirt,  a pair of shoes so far, it seems I will spend more money on it. The show is so ugly but the items are attracting. What kind of  marketing strategy is this ?!

Linyuan Yu, Fashion Director of FHM China

Hedi Slimane used his most vivid fashion language to show the reason why he changed the brand’s name——to tribute the old Shanghai’s landmark Shiliupu, where refugees landed on.

Rekko Jiani Zuo, Ex Fashion Editor of Elle China

 

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This Very Article is My Redemption

Queennie.Y | Source:Weibo

I am very grateful to my dear friends who helped me putting together my application for the CSM MA Fashion Journalism Program. I went through the first interview today. According to the interviewer, Kate-Rose Carrick, although my resume and working experience were perfect for this course, I should put more effort on my English writing. Apparently my Asian identity and Asian way of thinking drag me from being a qualified candidate for a major that requires real professional English writing. Advised to try harder and practice more, I am now sitting in front of my MacBook Pro, typing, making progress. I guess that delivering my idea properly is a bigger deal now.

 

Meanwhile, I owed my dear friend and partner, Queennie.Y, a very special memo that I promised her 2 years ago. Let’s flash back to the time when I was a freshman at college. I spent 2 weeks in Shanghai enjoying my summer vacation. That trip wasn’t just to escape from the same old city that I got stuck with. I was also there to evaluate my future-working environment and met friends who I have known for years via social network. It turned out that I really get along with Shanghai folks and two among them even play very important roles in my career path. They was Mr. Lin and Queennie.

 

The story between Mr. Lin and me was based on mutual appreciation. At that time I was just a newbie, getting in to the business. Mr. Lin was already a well-established fashion writer. I have been a keen reader of his column on Elle China and Men’s Uno for years. Never have we met each other before, he somehow mentioned my blog and me on his column one day. Thrilled as winning a gazillions lottery, I soon was in contact with him via blogs. Then, about half year later, an African band he run was about to perform in my city, he invited to dinner and the show. Thrilled again. It took me a few days to calm down for that night. So we officially met. Ever since that, I paid a visit to him every time I was in Shanghai, having dinner and some boozes together. Having someone admires your talent only happen once or twice in one’s life. I cherish that with my heart.

 

As for Queennie.Y, we are old time pals. We know each other ever since Facebook was just an ordinary website here. I was in high school and she was a sophomore in Fu Dan University. Talking via Internet for years, we haven’t really seen each other, since, you know, that’s what Internet was invented for, let strangers talk. We both had the feeling that we can be good friends in real world so we arranged a meeting at that time I was in Shanghai. One funny thing, before seeing each other in flesh, she warned me that not all fashion editors are as fierce and cold as Anna Wintour, nor dressing themselves for Tommy Tom. Fashion editor, however sacred it sound, is just a job and that do not define who you are, since people have many aspects in their life, although she wanted to see her as the Chinese version of Cathy Horyn. Confident as her self-positioning, she was among the a few groups of fashion editors who think and act as a western style professional journalist. The status quo in China is horrible. Fashion Editors either post their “style” in Instagram, or called the rest of the world bitch in their Weibo. Queennie is different. She is a major player and, if she need to, she easily can jump out of the Vanity Fair to observe as an outsider. People always hold the illusion that fashion circle is full of richie richs that they do nothing but being pretty and expensive. Well, the fact is that there is a group of doers in this business. They come from decent families with professional fashion education background. It’s understandable that this pretentious business needs social butterflies to attract attention, but it would be impossible to realize it without keen doers.

 

Anyway, we agreed to meet at this trendy arty area named Hong Fang and later had dinner together with Mr. Lin. There is the first Vidal Sassoon hair academy, Joyce boutique outlet and some art galleries. I arrived early as usual, so I can enjoy this exquisite block of vain for a while. After spending quite some time at exhibitions, finally there was Queennie, standing in front of me. She wore a black carrot pant paring with a gray top and McQueen-ish H&M digital print cardigan. Wait, the best part was her shoes, in leopard prints. Fabulous! You can tell there was an Anna Dello Russo living in Cathy Horyn. The reason we met in Hong Fang was because Nestlé was launching Nespresso, the coffee machine, in China and Queennie had some interview missions. Zhu zhu, long before she was the ex-girlfriend of Lapo Elkann and cast member of the much-expected adopted movie Cloud Atlas, was the host, dressing like a Barbie doll.

 

Queennie is like the real person version of Hello or OK! magezines and we don’t just exchange gossips like gossips, like German don’t drink beer just because it’s beer. We make gossip into a debatable notion, tackling it as if it really matters. Says we talked about the phenomenon of fashion bloggers turing into streetsnap models, the eco-system and business mode behind it and it’s justification and moral problems. What’s more, Queennie is more than a gossip weekly. She is a walking Wikipedia. She knows everything from foreign policy, domestic politics, leisure lifestyle, and gourmet to even Geek science. Sometimes I feel that a 30 minutes conversation between us can so make a juicy 8 spreads fashion feature or something on Bloomberg. After the press conference, we headed to the Joyce Boutique. There were some real good bargains, 500 RMB for a Balenciaga T-shirt. What a lovely day.

 

When Queennie had her interview mission done, it was about dinnertime. No elsewhere to go, we decided to head for the restaurant that Mr. Lin reserved a little bit earlier. The restaurant is located in French concession, a beautiful old house with giant trees in the yard. We talked about where we want to be in 3 years and we had that kind of conversation a lot. Just like there was a time when having Crepes, we came up the idea of this very fashion blog. I need to practice on my English writing skill, which is apparently not good enough for being a suitable candidate or as a matter of fact that my blogging style is way more casual than my serious fashion writing, and she need to prepare for her life in America. So we started the blog and, thanked god, later a Louis Vuitton PR crisis made this little project exposed. Then we received the invitation from Chloe and the next thing we knew was that we are going to Paris. This is huge. Well, at least, this is a little encouragement for my English writing practice.

 

It’s always good to see Queennie.Y. Even though we didn’t get the chance to be colleague, our partnership as contributor and editor got even better every time I was commissioned to write a piece of interesting article. Maybe it is because that we knew each other long before getting into the business, we do have real friendship and I treasure that. She is a keeper, you know, even for me.

 

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Alphabet and Attitudes

I am honored by Chloé’s invitation, as one of the 26 global fashion bloggers to participate in the “The Alphabet” game, in order to celebrate the 60 anniversary of Chloé. Each blogger will get one of the 26 letters and use it as a keyword to launch a unique online exhibition. The exhibitions will not only  review the archive of brand 60 years’ classic designs but also will release a number of historical pictures,sketches and profiles which were never been decrypted. I get the letter “V” represents “Visit” to a huge retrospective exhibition called “Chloé.ATTITUDES” at the same time in the Palais de Tokyo of Paris. I will be there next month and if you are just in Paris right now, why not “pay a Visit”to this wonderful event?

View of the exhibition

The alphabet concept is inspired by the brand founder Gaby Aghion, she use the letters as a unique approach to cataloguing her collections. It is hard to imagine, Chloé the brand always gives a feeling of fresh and girly has been established for 60 years. After Aghion, many women’s wear design-masters, including Karl Lagerfeld, Stella McCartney, Phoebe Philo, and today’s creative director Clare Waight Keller, continue to maintain the  easy, natural and feminine essence of Chloé. The modern and fresh air still spread in Paris fashion industry today which was created by Aghion who broke the rigid traditional couture in the past.

Chloé.ATTITUDES exhibition also highlights these qualities, compared with many exhibitions, there is no heavy historical data. The famous curator Judith Clark doesn’t simply arrange the clothes by time or periods. She cleverly makes a playful and thematic path through Chloé’s creativity, pausing at key moments within its history. In the new-decoed Palais de Tokyo, models wearing the Chloé’s beautiful dresses and standing all around, the hair artist Angelo Seminara makes a great and dramatic wig collection for them and creates a humorous atmosphere.Similarly, Chloé feminine qualities in the exhibits have been reflected, the clothes rarely have the tight and cramped style, they are more like relaxed and chic dresses, to liberate women’s body and soul. The interesting prints like banana  graphic bring us a modern and approachable concept of pret-a-porter.

In the early years, Aghion hired a bunch of young talents and new inspirations to her fashion house. Now the exhibition focuses on the contribution of 9 creative directors including Aghion of the brand,they are Gérard Pipart (pre 1963), Maxime de la Falaise ( late 1970s,who is Loulou de la Falaise’s mother) ,Karl Lagerfeld(in charge the fashion house from 1965 to 1983 as well as 1992 to 1997 ) , Martine Sitbon (1988 to 1992), and the modern female designers who we are familiar with Stella McCartney(1997 to 2001) , Phoebe Philo(2001-2006),  Hannah MacGibbon (2008-2011)  and Clare Waight Keller.  The word “Attitudes”  can perfectly explain their different creative spirit.No matter Lagerfeld’s soft and a little luxurious design, McCartney signature and  remarkable graphic printing, the Philo’s British interpretation, or the Keller’s keeping balancing the image between teenage boys and young girls. The Chloé girl will always be young and approachable, like Chloé’s design, that every girl is always willing to put it on.

Shower Cabinet

Psychadelia Cabinet

Cornfields’ Cabinet

View of the exhibition

Bananas Cabinet

Flowers Cabinet

Graphics Cabinet

Games Cabinet

Photograph Walls

Check out the exclusive preview video of the extraordinary exhibition.

Exhibition Info.
Chloé Attitudes
Palais de Tokyo, Paris
29 September – 18 November 2012
More Info. 

Check out the Chinese version on PROZAC JOURNAL 

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