China Fashion As A Means Of Soft Power

Coming soon


Does Chinese fashion & lifestyle have an increasing influence abroad? Well, it’s two-fold.

One the one hand, we are talking actual creativity and new approaches towards fashion. The Parsons’ graduate selection this year counter among its 15 graduating students, a staggering nine Chinese kids. And they blew audiences away with a show of blatant innovation, guts and glory back in September. Temper Magazine will, on that note, have a print issue coming out in February 2019 entitled “The R-Rated Issue” in which we feature all of their designs.


Thing is that many of these millennial Chinese fashion students are dealing with mixed feelings and experience a sense of duality. In a way, they feel torn between the total freedom a city like New York has to offer (often in terms of sexual orientation, even in 2018) and the constraints of parental supervision they still feel hovering over their heads all the way from China. Their designs tell the story of ambiguity.


Fashionably speaking, this translates into breathtaking, groundbreaking design. And yes, I often am asked to not mention certain “things” in the Temper articles. Something to which I am happy to oblige. And then, of course, there are the big names bordering on becoming new fashion institutions like Masha Ma, Angel Chen, Shushu Tong/Studio, Xander Zhou,…, who are presenting their FROWs with new images of contemporary China. And yes, people do ask… “This is CHINA?!” Yep. ‘Tis.

On the other hand, we’re talking no nonsense sales numbers. Take, for example, T-Mall. T-Mall in February 2018 hosted its first T-Mall China Day, a one day event showcasing a host of Chinese (athleisure) design, from Li Ning to Chen Peng. Groundbreaking? No. Interesting to yours truly? Nope. Enticing to the 500+ U.S. and other Western influencers invited to attend this show of “fresh, exotic” design? Absolutely. The audience was cooing away. You should’ve been there.


Again, more to come soon