Shanghai Fashion Week Returns Despite Strict COVID-19 Restrictions – WWD

SHANGHAI – After being forced to go digital due to Shanghai’s two-month lockdown last season, Shanghai Fashion Week is returning with a physical edition.

From Thursday to September 30, the Spring 2023 edition of SFW will host more than 64 shows with a focus on local designers.

Contemporary Chinese fashion label Lu Yan, Comme Moi, local designer brands 8on8, Nume, Xu Zhi, Staffonly, Mayali and Garçon by Garçon will be featured at the official Taiping Lake Park venue near Xintiandi.

SFW will continue its partnership with Douyin, the Chinese version of TikTok, with live shows and video releases after the shows.

To celebrate its 20th anniversary, SFW will host a series of talks, including the China Fashion Industry Forum in partnership with McKinsey & Co., and the SFW She Power: Women of Fashion Forum II.

About 12 exhibitions and trade shows, including a smaller version of Mode, SFW’s official trade show, will continue as planned.

Labelhood, the Shanghai-based emerging designer support platform, will return to The Bund, taking over two historic buildings in the Rock Bund, a shopping mall complex.

M Essential Noir, Annenono, Ao Yes, Un Morceau, MTG, Yiben Chen and Yehua Fan will make their runway debut.

“For us, being able to host the event is already a success,” said Tasha Liu, founder of Labelhood.

Stricter screening protocols are in place as China adheres to its zero-COVID-19 policy. Show staff must show proof of 24-hour COVID-19 tests for five consecutive days prior to the event, while fashion spectators will be required to show valid 24-hour COVID-19 test results to enter the premises of SFW.

At Ontimeshow, the largest fashion trade show during SFW, the pages will be disinfected daily.

For many brands, organizing fashion shows abroad became a popular option in previous seasons, but as the hurdle of getting events approved by local authorities became very difficult due to restrictions related to COVID-19, the attitude with official sites it became the safest option.

Ontimeshow will expand to nine show venues covering more than 29,000 square meters. The showroom exhibition will feature nine new brands, such as Self-portrait, Qiuhao and Private Policy.

According to Aroma Xie, co-founder and marketing director at Ontimeshow, as there is an increase in lifestyle brands in the market, Room Room will introduce 14 fragrance brands in its showroom.

Zemira Xu, Founder of Tube Showroom, said the exhibition will re-introduce brands launched during last season’s Hangzhou Alternative Expo, including Bad Binch Tongtong, Office H and Structura.

“We will see how this season goes in terms of shopper attendance before deciding whether to do a pop-up showroom in another city,” Xu said. “At this point, no one is planning ahead anymore.”

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