Fash­ion col­lab­o­ra­tion with Lu­nar New Year

Michael Kors, Chi­nese star Yang Mi team up for spe­cial col­lec­tion

Kingston Whig-Standard - - LIFE - ALEESHA HAR­RIS VAN­COU­VER SUN

For Yang Mi, Lu­nar New Year is all about tra­di­tion.

“It is the most im­por­tant date for me,” she says. “My fam­ily, to­gether, stays up late un­til mid­night, when we (set) off fire­crack­ers. Then, we go back home, make dumplings and have them all. It is very, very happy.”

The Chi­nese multi-hy­phen­ate — she’s an ac­tress, fash­ion model and so­cial me­dia star boast­ing more than 78 mil­lion fol­low­ers on the on­line plat­form Weibo — uses the time sur­round­ing the Spring Fes­ti­val to take a break from her de­mand­ing film and travel sched­ule, to “re­lax” with those who mat­ter the most.

“(It’s a) fam­ily re­union,” she says of the fes­tiv­i­ties. “It is so happy for me to chat with my fam­ily.”

The hol­i­day, which marks the start of the new lu­nar year, has also be­come a fo­cal point for fash­ion brands, es­pe­cially as the Chi­nese re­tail mar­ket con­tin­ues to ex­pand.

“The Asian mar­ket has be­come a key in­ter­est mar­ket for the Michael Kors brand,” de­signer Michael Kors ex­plains.

“It con­tin­ues to grow, and we find that the shop­pers there re­ally love the mix of glam­our, so­phis­ti­ca­tion and va­ri­ety that they find in our stores — they can get ev­ery­thing from sneak­ers, to a sleek cross­body, to party dresses in one stop.”

The Amer­i­can fash­ion de­signer says it was with this in­ter­est in cel­e­brat­ing his grow­ing Asian con­sumer base — the Michael Kors brand cur­rently op­er­ates stores in Hong Kong, South Korea and In­done­sia — cou­pled with his de­sire to cel­e­brate the di­verse cul­tures of his cus­tomer base, that orig­i­nally prompted him to cre­ate a Lu­nar New Year col­lec­tion.

“We have cus­tomers and em­ploy­ees all over the world,” he says. “And we like to take mo­ments through­out the year to cel­e­brate their lives, in­clud­ing their hol­i­days and tra­di­tions.

“Lu­nar New Year is one of those mo­ments.”

Mi, who was re­cently named an “am­bas­sador” for the brand, ex­pects the trend to­ward fash­ion brands em­brac­ing Chi­nese de­signs and in­flu­ence to in­crease.

“Nowa­days, more and more in­ter­na­tional fash­ion brands will con­sider Chi­nese el­e­ments into the de­sign,” she says. “I think it is a very nice thing.”

For the Year of the Dog, Kors has re­leased a com­pre­hen­sive col­lec­tion of prod­ucts promi­nently fea­tur­ing the colour red, which sym­bol­izes joy and good for­tune, as well as lit­eral nods to the ca­nine in­flu­ence with pup-shaped ac­cents and ac­ces­sories.

“I like the red Cori hand­bag.

The colour echoes to the at­mos­phere of Lu­nar New Year, and the size of the hand­bag is very prac­ti­cal,” Mi says of her favourite piece from the range.

“And the other in­ter­est­ing ele­ment is the dog pin, which you can use on your hand­bag or any­where else. It is so cute and del­i­cate.”

Kors’ favourite piece is rooted in prac­ti­cal­ity — which may come as no sur­prise to his style sup­port­ers, as merg­ing func­tion and fash­ion is what the Kors brand has come to be known for.

“I don’t like to play favourites, but I think the Sloan wal­let — es­pe­cially in red with a chain link strap — bal­ances glam­our and so­phis­ti­ca­tion very well,” Kors says when pressed. “Plus, it dou­bles as a bag, so it’s one of those pieces you can use for years to come.”

Or, at least un­til next Lu­nar New Year, when Kors will surely re­lease a new col­lec­tion of cov­etable pieces.

I like the red Cori hand­bag. The colour echoes to the at­mos­phere of Lu­nar New Year, and the size of the hand­bag is very prac­ti­cal.” Ac­tress Yang Mi

MICHAEL KORS PHOTO

Chi­nese ac­tress Yang Mi is pic­tured with de­signer Michael Kors at the 2017 MET Gala.

Chi­nese ac­tress Yang Mi is an am­bas­sador for Michael Kors. Mi wears the Michael Michael Kors Cori Small Leather Cross­body, $448

Gold-tone dog pin from Michael Kors, $15.

Michael Michael Kors Sloan Leather Chain Wal­let, $228.

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