NEW FASHION FESTIVAL TARGET AT YOUNG CONSUMERS DEBUTS IN CITY
Blank, a brand and pop culture exhibition and communication platform, has launched a biannual fashion festival to promote the country’s domestic fashion brands that are catered to Chinese youth.
The inaugural festival, which was held in October in downtown Shanghai, featured a combination of fashion shows, art exhibitions, fashion forums and pop-up stores.
Twelve domestic brands including Lifegoseon, FMACM and AND REO MA, and rappers participated in the festival where the majority of the attendees were designers and young people from the industry, according to Ji Ji, the founder of Blank.
“The festival is part of our plan to build a platform that helps display and promote original domestic designs and brands, which would in turn help the development of our own fashion culture,” said Ji.
He added that the establishment of the Blank brand this year was timely as the standards of homegrown labels having been growing, with some even on par with their counterparts from major cities known for their fashion culture.
Besides hosting the fashion festival twice every year, Blank would also help its participating brands set up offline stores, said Ji.
According to Chao Pai Hui, a website that focuses on brands for the youth, the sales of many local fashion brands during the shopping extravaganza on Singles Day on Nov 11 last year doubled that of 2016.
The website also quoted e-commerce behemoth Alibaba as saying that the overall online trading volume of trendy local fashion brands had hit 300 million yuan ($43.4 million) last year. This figure is expected to grow to 400 million yuan this year. According to Ji, the successful appearance of Li Ning, the brand founded by Olympic gold-medalwinning gymnast Li Ning in 1990, and Clot Family, which was created by Hong Kong actor Edison Chen in 2003, at the New York Fashion Week in February 2018 was a clear indication of the success of domestic fashion brands for young people. Ji added that the younger generation in China today have become more accepting of homegrown labels as compared to five years ago when they preferred brands from other nations such as Japan and South Korea. “Brand-awareness doesn’t matter to the young generation, especially the generation born after 1995,” Ji said. “They care more about the apparel itself and how it might help them express their attitude. They have strong personalities and refuse to imitate, and Chinese designers have now managed to get a hold of their attention.”
Li Yungang, designer of Lifegoeson, echoed this sentiment. “There was barely a supply chain, marketing or a clear concept of design back in 2012 when Lifegoeson was founded. Today, the market is very different. Our designs are also becoming more original compared to years ago,” said Li.
Li added that he was grateful for Blank’s fashion festival as it has allowed him to host his label’s first fashion show.
“The festival has provided me with a great platform to display my collection and to learn from other designers,” Li said.
“This is important to us young designers to cultivate our self-confidence and grow.”
Blank, a pop culture exhibition, builds a platform to help display and promote original domestic designs and brands.