fashion designers


fashion designers
Since the end of the Cultural Revolution, mainland Chinese fashions have undergone a dramatic development as economic reforms have brought in Western concepts of clothing production and design. Although the majority of clothing is still designed anonymously and manufactured through joint ventures or state-run companies, such as the Shanghai Garment Group Ltd, an increasing number of individual designers and their companies are becoming recognized, often through the efforts of the China Garment Designers’ Association.
Chen Xiang (b. 1969) graduated from the China Textile University in Shanghai and shortly after established his own label ‘3 Eux Et Elles’. The majority of his designs are highly commercial and are targeted at the growing number of fashion-conscious, unmarried, working women with some disposable income in the Shanghai and Nanjing regions.
Guo Pei (b. 1967), named one of China’s top ten designers in 1997, initially worked for several fashion companies before becoming chief designer for the Beijing-based Tianma (Heavenly Horse) Clothing Company in 1989. Six years later, Guo moved to the Milano Fashion Company Ltd, a Taiwanese-American joint venture, again in Beijing. Whilst at Milano, she continued to design her own lines and this formed the basis for the establishment of her own company Meiguifang (Mayflower) in 1996. Although she offers a line of women’s work outfits, she is best known for her more revealing casual wear, including signature loose-knit baggy crop-top jumpers paired with hipster shorts.
Sun Jian (b. 1967), a 1986 graduate of the Second Light Industrial Institute, began her fashion career in teaching design, but soon progressed to the post of chief designer at a number of organizations, including Aidekang (Ideal Couture Fashion Company Ltd), a Chinese-German joint venture in Beijing. By 1992, Sun had established her own company offering Chinese-inspired items under the label ‘Sun Jian Fashion Studio’. Sun Yatsen-style jackets (see Mao Zedong and Sun Yatsen suits) and qipao, cheongsam-style evening dresses are prominent examples. Like many mainland designers, she combines couture popular with media personalities, with commercial commissions such as the Wangfujing Hotel Club and the Agricultural Bank.
Wu Haiyan, a graduate of the handicraft art department of the China Academy of Fine Arts in Hangzhou, held her first fashion show in 1990 and has since become one of the best-known faces in Chinese design. She has won prizes for her designs both in China and abroad and was one of the top ten designers in China in 1995 and 1997. She began working as chief designer for the Hangzhou Kaidisi Silks Company (see silk industry) in 1995 and has used silk in many of her subsequent designs known for their elegance and femininity. She holds senior positions at her alma mater and is also as chief designer at the China National Garments Group Company.
Ye Hong, a 1984 graduate of fashion design from the China Academy of Fine Art in Hangzhou, established her own company in Shanghai in 1991. Her designs range from couture, to ready-to-wear items for professional women, to commercial contracts for hotels, stores and fast-food chains.
Roberts, Claire (1997). Evolution and Revolution: Chinese Dress 1700s-1990s. Sydney: Powerhouse Publishing, 97–102.
SARAH DAUNCEY

Encyclopedia of contemporary Chinese culture. . 2011.

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