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    Shanghai Fashion Week F/W 2024: Celebrities, trends, viral moments

    While the likes of Angelababy, Yang Chaoyue, and Hu Lianxin added star dust, Hermès' surprise menswear debut and buyer trends shone a light on China’s luxury industry.
    Mark Gong unveils his Fall 2024 collection “The Heartbreak Club.” Photo: Shanghai Fashion Week Weibo
    Janice LiWriter
      Published   in Fashion

    Shanghai Fashion Week (SHFW) wrapped up its 2024 Fall/Winter season on April 1.

    Themed “Chain Sparks New Life” (链象生新), this iteration was inspired by the collision of diverse forces within the fashion industry, igniting a chain reaction that births new fashion movements and thought-provoking garments. The aim was to cultivate deeper connections between designers and the industry, and foster collaboration and innovation.

    Over the course of eight days, three platforms – Xintiandi Fashion Presentation, Labelhood Vanguard Fashion Presentation, and Kids Wear Fashion Presentation – hosted nearly 100 product launches.

    Le Fame opened this year’s SHFW with its 2024 Fall/Winter collection, dubbed "Modern Shanghai Trilogy."

    Co-created with independent designer Zhou Zixin, the brand’s show centered on three images of contemporary Shanghai women — "Shanghai glamor," "Shanghai moonlight," and "new Chinese style," reinterpreting the heyday of Shanghai fashion in the 1920s and 1930s.

    Le Fame’s Fall 2024 collection takes inspiration from retro Shanghai fashion. Photo: Shanghai Fashion Week Weibo
    Le Fame’s Fall 2024 collection takes inspiration from retro Shanghai fashion. Photo: Shanghai Fashion Week Weibo

    The accessories created in partnership with popular jewelry label Yvmin were also a center piece. The two rejuvenated vintage jewelry from the 1920s and 1930s, infusing modern design with nostalgic elements.

    “In the current era dominated by fast-paced consumerism, audiences are raising their defenses, and a collective nostalgia is emerging,” says Le Fame co-founder and General Manager, Wang Manxiu.

    Celebrities and fashion icons Yang Ying (Angelababy), Yang Chaoyue, Hu Lianxin, Xu Jiaqi, Yanyikuan, and Du Ruoxi attended the show, boosting the brand’s exposure. A video showing Yang Ying and Yang Chaoyue talking while sitting together at the show went viral on Weibo, attracting 130 million views.

    Yang Chaoyue and Angelababy at the Le Fame show. Photo: Shanghai Fashion Week Weibo
    Yang Chaoyue and Angelababy at the Le Fame show. Photo: Shanghai Fashion Week Weibo

    This year the Chinese fashion capital welcomed many new participants, such as Studio Aubruino. The independent label was founded by Aubrey Wang and Chih Chiu eight years ago in London. The designers drew inspiration for their Fall/Winter 2024 collection from their childhood memories of building fortresses with sofa cushions and bed sheets at home.

    “Our design approach involved merging our signature elements, including patterns, checks, and metal pieces, to craft a narrative perspective. This narrative portrays a girl’s journey from childhood sanctuary, built through her secret fortress to the adult world, conveying a surreal and intriguing sense of reversal,” says co-founder Wang.

    The designers’ inspiration evolves from an initial exploration of avant-garde fantasies to a gradual return to the introspective search for self and a heightened awareness of the world around us in reality.

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    Making a comeback to the Shanghai catwalk on March 26 following the viral success of his previous presentation in October 2023, Parsons graduate Mark Gong created a street scene adorned with luminous lights, a fountain, and a dusting of snow.

    “The models’ composure and makeup seamlessly complemented the environment, showcasing the collection in a captivating manner,” says KOL Butterfly Princess (@蝴蝶公主). “While stage design plays a crucial role and the clothes naturally take center stage, a successful runway presentation hinges on the harmonious integration of model makeup, stage design, music, and other elements.”

    For the previous season, Gong drew inspiration from Samantha Jones and situated his collection within an imagined rendition of the Vogue offices at the World Trade Center.

    This time, Australian designer Dion Lee decided to showcase his Fall/Winter 2024 collection at SHFW. But to the surprise of many, Hermès also quietly showed up in the Chinese metropolis showcasing again its Men’s Spring/Summer 2024 at the West Bund Museum in the historic waterfront district.

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    The decision to stage a menswear collection instead of womenswear is intriguing. This choice may suggest Hermès' ambition to tap into China's growing “he” economy.

    Shanghai Fashion Week came as China tackles economic challenges, such as deflation, real estate market volatility and youth unemployment.

    In attendance was Tran Thi Hoai Anh, founder and chairman of Vietnam’s Global Link Group, and buyer for Runway.

    Hermès showcased its Summer 2024 menswear collection at SHFW. Photo: Hermès
    Hermès showcased its Summer 2024 menswear collection at SHFW. Photo: Hermès

    “Many Chinese brands draw inspiration from their rich heritage spanning thousands of years, encompassing culture, history, and craftsmanship,” he says. “They offer distinctive styles and concepts that set them apart from other globally recognized brands. We often gravitate towards brands that skillfully integrate intriguing Chinese elements and exceptional craftsmanship with contemporary aesthetics and design.”

    The designers at this season’s SFW embraced their millennial backstory and translated it into a wardrobe for modern women and men, says Tran. Unlike in the past, when Chinese symbols were conspicuously placed on garments to showcase national and cultural pride, now the narrative is exquisitely subtle, leaving more space for creativity.

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