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Korea's Upbeat Fashion Talents Shine in China Updated: 2011-09-22 00:00:00 KST

Many fashion designers and brands seek to break into China… the world's biggest manufacturing powerhouse with a burgeoning economy that is largely contributing to the rapid development of its domestic fashion market.

[Interview : Shi Zhen-dong Vice-mayor,
Haining] "Haining city has been continueously benchmarking fashion trends in Korea and Japan. That was why we have gained heart of Chinese consumers."

Striving to become a fashion powerhouse, China is showing its immense appetite for global fashion designs, including the field of fashion illustration.
And at the 2012 Haining Leather Expo… Chinese organizers courted one of Korea's leading fashion illustrators, Lee Mi-jung… to allow the public enjoy her inspiring work.

[Interview : Lee Mi-jung, Professor
Dongduk University] "When the Chinese committee invited me to the fair.. I knew that I could use such opportunity to introduce Korea's fashion illustration to China's market."

[Interview : Xiaowen Leng, Professor
Qinghua University] "Professor Lee's fashion illustation has a great influence in a global fashion arena. We staged her work at the previous exhibition with a great success."

Lee specializes in Oriental painting, using terse yet bold brushstrokes and shading techniques to portray scenes reminiscent of Europe's medieval gothic art… inspiring and guiding many Chinese students to use various dynamic forms of media to convey fashion.

[Reporter : Yang Ji-woo
jwyang@arirang.co.kr] "Depicting elegant body postures… Lee showcased 60 of her most eye-catching illustrations to reveal how to harness oriental painting with different drawing styles."

Meanwhile, on the business front… some venturous Korean businessmen illustrated their interpretations of the Chinese dream.

With 14 years of trading experience Kim Tae-hoon runs a leather factory with nearly 2-hundred employees dealing with major department stores and boutiques all across China.
He says China's fashion market can be tough to crack, especially considering the cultural and language barriers.

[Interview : Kim Tae-hoon, President
Hanara Fashion Corporation] "I think localization is the most important factor. It means adapting to the local market. If you can achieve that, you would survive. Otherwise, you will have to return to Korea."

According to the global consulting agency, McKinsey China's consumption of luxury goods is estimated to post 18 percent annual growth to reach nearly 28 billion US dollars by 2015.
Experts say that Korean fashion industry needs to pursue refined and value-added fashion items in order to tap into the higher-margin fashion business of Asia's largest emerging market, China.
Yang Ji-woo, Arirang News, Haining, China.
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