Chinesedesignercombinesclothingandtraditionalculture-GlobalTimes

load_file(“/includes/top.html”);load_file(“/includes/navmenu.html”);HOMELIFE,ARTSChinese designer combines clothing and traditional cultureBy Ji Yuqiao Source:Global Times Published: 2020/3/22 17:13:40 Last Updated: 2020/3/22 12:13:40load_file(“/includes/article_shareup.html”);Chinese designer Zhang Yan works with models. Photo: Courtesy of Zhang YanInstead of a designer, Zhang Yan, 25, who made his New York fashion week debut in 2019, prefers to call himself a tailor, because in his view, tailoring requires more talent and skill.”I attained the level of a designer several years ago, but I am still not a tailor yet. I am still working on becoming a brilliant Chinese tailor,” he said.Zhang noted that Chinese clothing culture focuses more on whether clothing can show the wearers spirit and energy, so tailors need to have rich experience to accurately understand both human beings and clothing.As a tailor, patience is just as important as talent because it usually takes more than 50 days to complete a single embroidered work, Zhang noted. On the way to becoming an eligible and experienced Chinese tailor, Zhang created em-broidery works that earned him an invitation to 2019 New York Fashion Week.Like a dream”I did not believe it at first when I heard the news that I was going to New York Fashion Week until I saw my name on the official website. It was like a dream,” the young designer recalled.It was an opportunity to show off his original works at an international fashion platform and also a type of recognition of his design style and the core concepts of Chinese philosophy.Zhang says that Chinas Taoist philosophy is one of his core design concepts. “Taoism teaches us to be free and unfettered and avoid the restraints of the trifles of daily life. This is exactly what I want to convey through my clothing.”Zhang said that embroidery has allowed him to slow the pace of his life down and stabilize his mental stage. He is now trying to pass this leisurely attitude on to others through his clothing.Zhang made his first stage appearance at New York Fashion Week with a show titled Fusheng, literally “flowing life.” The theme was inspired by a Chinese phrase “flowing life is like a dream,” which is in accordance with Taoist thought.The show featuring glimmering fabrics, intricate embroidery, oriental silhouettes and a dreamlike atmosphere, was about how adults can find their childhood courage. At curtain call, about 100 Chinese children dressed in all kinds of authentic Chinese clothing headed to the front of the stage as thumping, clanking music played on.Zhang said when he heard this traditional Chinese-style music and saw the models wearing his original works, he was deeply touched by the charm of Chinese culture. “I almost burst into tears backstage.”Western audiences were also shocked by the exotic charm of this embroidered clothing.The show brought foreign audiences together to experience traditional Chinese clothing culture and conveyed Chinese peoples life philosophy to them.”Some of my works captured foreign audiences as they combined Western shapes with Chinese embroidery patterns,” Zhang said. “After the show, I received lots of orders and did quite well commercially,” he said, laughing.His next New York tour will begin in September.Sticking with itZhang said that his love for clothing started in middle . Once he watched a fashion show for an international brand on TV and surprisingly found that haute couture was so elegant and splendid that he couldnt look away. It was then and there that he thought about making designing his career. However, his parents firmly opposed him taking on what they saw as a “womans job” which they felt had no future. “Traditional Chinese culture probably wasnt as accepted at the time,” Zhang explained.Not knowing where to begin, he ended up going to college for stage art. However, he never gave up his dream. He eventually began learning about different types of embroidery from various artists.Starting his business without the support of his parents, Zhang spent nearly 3,000 yuan ($422) to rent a house where he would work making traditional clothing like qipao, also known as cheongsam.”I wanted to give up almost every day at that time due to financial difficulties,” he said. “But thanks to those who liked and supported my work, I was able to persist until today.”One of those people was the chairman of Chinas Qipao Association, who ordered 40 sets and paid for everything ahead of time.With the help of these people, Zhang continued to improve his skills. He found inspiration from Chinese ancient books such as the Classic of Mountains and Seas, a Chinese compilation of mythical geography and beasts, and ancient murals such as those at the Mogao Grottoes in Dunhuang, Northwest Chinas Gansu Province.”My design concepts come from the legendary stories in these ancient books and I learned how to use various clothing colors by looking at the murals from different periods in the Mogao Grottoes.”His experience has helped to break stereotypes about men in needlework and high fashion in China.Zhang said that he hopes his experience can also inspire teenagers who are still confused about whether they should pursue their dreams. “There are many ways to attain success. As long as you try your best, you can make your dreams come true.”Fashion and COVID-19Amid the COVID-19 pandemic around the world, all fashion shows and activities have been suspended, including New York Fashion Week.”My work has not been affected too much because last years orders will not be completed until May, but the entire fashion industry is under attack,” Zhang said.Some haute couture shops have been hit hard by the pandemic because customers need to try on clothes first before purchasing and few factories have resumed work.Many models have not been able to work since the end of 2019 and have had to turn to other industries.Zhang said that when the pandemic ends, he will continue to attend more fashion shows and broaden his presence in the international market.”I will open brick and mortar stores abroad to allow more foreign customers to directly experience Chinese clothing culture.””If we want to inherit this splendid culture, we have to make people want to wear it,” he said.Newspaper headline: Philosophy of fashionRELATED ARTICLES:Chinese fashion designer combines clothing and traditional cultureShanghai to debut world’s first cloud fashion week Children present creations during Spring Fashion Day 2020 event in MinskPosted in: FASHION,CULTURE & LEISURE,ARTS FOCUSvar wxs = (function() {return navigator.userAgent.toLowerCase().indexOf(micromessenger) !== -1})();if (!wxs) {/* * * CONFIGURATION VARIABLES: EDIT BEFORE PASTING INTO YOUR WEBPAGE * * */var disqus_shortname = globaltimes; // required: replace example with your forum shortnamevar disqus_identifier = 1183360;/* * * DONT EDIT BELOW THIS LINE * * */(function () {var dsq = document.createElement(script); dsq.type = text/javascript; dsq.async = true;dsq.src = https:// + disqus_shortname + .disqus.com/embed.js;(document.getElementsByTagName(head)[0] || document.getElementsByTagName(body)[0]).appendChild(dsq);})();}Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus.blog comments powered by Disqusload_file(“/includes/channel_right.html”);load_file(“/includes/footer.html”);$(document).ready(function($){$(“#channel-list .row-content”).each(function(){  if($(this).children().length==1){$(this).children().css(width,100%);}
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