Hong Kong fashion focuses on the next big things

Innovation seems to be the catchphrase being bandied about at this year’s Hong Kong Fashion Week for Spring /Summer – and it’s a word that covers both the styles being shown by Asia’s hottest young designers and the materials they are putting to use in their collections.

The 18th edition of the event runs until Thursday at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre and has this year attracted 1,300 exhibitors from 24 nations, according to organizers the Hong Kong Trade Development Council.

It opened Monday with a showcase of 12 collections from past winners of the Hong Kong Young Fashion Designers Contest – inspiration for the next generation of designers who are hoping attention gained at the fair will help set their careers on similar paths to the likes of famed Hong Kong designers Barney Cheng and Dorian Ho.

Hong Kong is the second largest exporter of clothing in the world – last year moving more than US$23 billion (16 billion euros) worth of goods – and for that reason alone Fashion Week here has often been seen in a slightly different light than that of similar events held in the world’s most famous fashion cities.

“It doesn’t quite enjoy the global glamour and prominence of, say, New York or Paris Fashion Week, because Hong Kong’s own Fashion Week is a more trade-focused exhibition, but that also allows the industry here to march more to its own beat, rather than follow the style dictation of the status quo,” says fashion industry insider Christina Ko, who founded the Hong Kong Fashion Geek blog (hkfashiongeek.com).

“But where the four main fashion weeks can become a blur of the same trends and faces, Hong Kong’s prizes innovation and technique over “what’s hot now” – and the results, while hit or miss, are often as or more interesting than anything you’ll see on Style.com.”

To that end Hong Kong hosts a series of events used to promote the work of young designers – and seminars from industry veterans to help them spot the latest trends in the fashion world. Among the material innovations so far seen have been an eco-fabric made from recycled plastic bottles and a type of rayon made from cotton seeds and suited to people with sensitive skin.

“The event is a great opportunity for talented local designers to be exposed at such a scale,” Jing Zhang, fashion editor at Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post, told Relaxnews. “Funding to produce shows of such size for independent designers here is seriously lacking and it’s also a chance for these designers to get press they would otherwise miss out on. Usually fashion events for local designers here are otherwise are not so varied, and rather small.”

Hong Kong Fashion Week for Spring/Summer continues until Thursday.

Source : www.independent.co.uk