798, Angelica Cheung, Antiques, Beifu, Beijing parties, BIFT, Chinoiseries, embroideries, Hebei, Jay Ahr, Jonathan Riss, Made in China, Tod's, Vogue China
Last night was the last leg of my party series… Until 2014. And it was glorious!
JAY AHR, the very talented couturier Jonathan Riss came to Beijing for a special project that was unveiled at the UCCA Museum in 798. This amazing collaboration between the French house, Tods and Vogue China was unveiled last night to one and all in 5 different capsules. Five capsules presented in five iconic pieces from the Jay Ahr collection each using a different and delicate embroidery technique.
Suspended mid-air, poetic and beautiful, the clothes, along with a piece of art, a couple of bags and an iconic « Tod’s » were all conveying a different silent emotion. From the fine and light silk threads of ‘graffiti’ to the more ‘techno’ silicon chips the blue and black group, or the lava beads of the red and black, it was truly spectacular.
Those pieces presented were all exclusively « Made in China » using the ancestral techniques of embroideries that only a handful of skilled workers can do in Hebei province in collaboration with their Beifu atelier.
« Made in China » for the last few thousand years was truly a symbol of exquisite workmanship. It was rare, it was expensive, it was the essence of Luxury.
The finest European homes would collect and admire their precious « chinoiseries » and curiosités. Lacquered jewels boxes, embroidered silk brocade, delicate porcelain vases or figurines.
When I was a child, my beloved great grand-mother to let me play – under her most attentive supervision – with her most precious antique. The small ivory figurine of a chinaman whose coral tongue would peak out when we gently tilted his head. He wore a kimono, held his hands together and came from a Chinese imperial collection. Sadly, he was stolen from my grand-mother’s house before I could inherit him. « Le Chinois » had immense value and my grand-mother’s indelicate f%$#%& thief knew what he was doing.
Made in China today is synonymous with fast fashion, easy-to-break toys and disposable convenience but the ‘savoir-faire’, the special knowledge of these ancestral craftsmanship is still there. Mostly untapped and ready to roar. Away from preying eyes, most big houses already manufacture the lion share of their production in China, but that a couture designer from Paris would come all the way here to take advantage of that knowledge and workmanship is, I think, quite unique.
Last night, Jay Ahr Beijing Project showed that China is not done surprising us yet.
Jay Ahr is poised to give back to China its ‘Lettres de Nobless ».
About time too.
Breathtaking. I loved how the rock n roll embroideries perfectly complement the pretty tennis dress.
I cannot wait to see what the future holds.
Little Red Riding Hood loosing super cute.
A lovely belle du Jour wearing a Chinese Designer.
The Chinese version of this blog is on Vogue China « Gabrielle 北京“:http://bit.ly/184cFDy
La version française de ce blog est sur Le Monde.fr Style section « Swinging Pékin ».
Instagram & Bomoda.com : Benedicte Beijing