Why Balenciaga Brings Its Haute Couture Collection to China – WWD

PARIS Chinese customers can’t come to Paris because Balenciaga‘NS winning back to haute couture in July, so the house instead brought its most exclusive creations to Shanghai for a five-day event that took place on Friday.

It marks the first time Balenciaga held an event in Mainland China, and for the first time the haute couture collection was shown outside of Paris, reflecting the strategic importance of the territory, where Balenciaga has 39 stores and fandom among fashion-conscious consumers, according to executives. Officer Cedric Charbit.

“It’s a strong signal,” he told WWD in an exclusive interview. “Chinese influence is everywhere – aesthetically, economically, culturally and fashionably – so it was important for us to be present in this pyramid-tipped market in the Balenciaga’s proposal.”

Brands are soaring after registering a daily record of worldwide sales last Monday for the launch of Project Hacker, which includes reinterpretations of the coin’s codes Kering-Owned Trademarks Gucci. The capsule collection was sold at 14 pop-up stores in Mainland China, driving sales in Beijing, Chengdu and Wuhan.

Due to ongoing travel restrictions related to the coronavirus pandemic, neither Charbit nor the creative director Demna Gvasalia was able to attend the haute couture showcase at the Shanghai Tank museum.

“Since China can’t go to Europe either, I felt it was our duty to bring Balenciaga’s 50th couture collection there,” said the designer, who stated he just wanted to know. came by his name, said in a statement.

“I am proud to share with China a very important moment celebrating Balenciaga culture, craftsmanship and heritage in an exhibition showcasing my first couture collection,” he said. added.

Charbit notes that with less than 15 years on the market, Balenciaga is a relative newcomer in China, meaning their media is largely focused on the artistic vision of Demna, who arrives late in the year. 2015.

Balenciaga haute couture installation at the Shanghai Tank museum.

Balenciaga haute couture installation at the Shanghai Tank museum.

Now the brand is ready to talk about its 104-year history. Invitations-only museum exhibits include an environment inspired by Balenciaga’s Recently restored tailor and couture salon at 10 Avenue George V in Paris: think beige curtains, pale carpets and sculptural furniture.

In an impressive circular gallery space, 18 models from the collection introduced in July were displayed along with an outfit created specifically for the event. An additional 11 looks can be found in a bespoke outfit that includes a salon for customers to view the works; a walled platform to take measurements and a dressing area.

“The set design is highly experiential and immersive, very epic and breathtaking, but also very relatable,” said Charbit. “The importance of Balenciaga in China today is so important that it is important to see the brand fresh in its global context, including both its contemporary aspect and our roots.”

While he declined to disclose figures, the executive said the Chinese market was on fire.

Charbit, who took over in 2016. It is the country that has seen the strongest growth of Balenciaga since I arrived, said: “It is the leading market in terms of both size and revenue, but also from a quality perspective. Our community is extremely sophisticated. It is the country with the highest proportion of ready-to-wear goods. “

Accordingly, Balenciaga has chosen China to open its first store worldwide with its new retail concept. The two-story flagship at the IAPM mall in Shanghai, over 7,500 square feet, carries women’s and men’s ready-to-wear, accessories, shoes and children’s clothing.

Pia Camil installation at the Balenciaga store in Shanghai's IAPM shopping mall.

Pia Camil installation at the Balenciaga store in Shanghai’s IAPM shopping mall.

“This is our largest store in China, who praised our local teams for their ability to execute on the most advanced aspects of the brand strategy,” said Charbit.

“This idea is interesting because it is both extremely rustic and very classy at the same time,” he says of the store design, which combines raw concrete, exposed ceilings and fluorescent strip lighting with beautiful display units and striking red installations by artist Pia Camil.

“Since Demna and I arrived, I have seen the Chinese audience instantly connect with his creative vision. I find it amazing to see how stylish our clients are, their connection to ready-to-wear and their reaction to the unique and unusual side of our creative proposition,” he said. added. “Balenciaga’s performance in China was brilliant.”

After increasing its store network from seven to 39 in five years, the brand will now focus on enhancing its presence by optimizing the size and location of its stores. Featuring two days of haute couture previews and three days of accessories with in-person appointments, the Shanghai event is designed to deepen the brand’s relationship with top customers.

Charbit said the couture collection for women and men, the first since founder Cristóbal Balenciaga retired 53 years ago, immediately resonated with the brand’s clientele. brand worldwide.

“We saw extremely strong interest from both men and women of all ages, and quite unexpectedly, both classic couture customers but also celebrities and collectors,” he said. . “People care about our heritage and craftsmanship but also the fact that this comeback is historic, so anyone interested in fashion and its history understands the importance of this presentation.”

Balenciaga’s couture team in Paris trained experts in Shanghai to take clients’ measurements and interpret the history of each outfit. “It’s incredible what you can transmit from afar. Everything was done by video call,” said Charbit. “Knowledge and the ability to understand each other are quite natural.”

Balenciaga haute couture installation at the Shanghai Tank museum.

Balenciaga haute couture installation at the Shanghai Tank museum.


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https://wwd.com/fashion-news/fashion-features/why-balenciaga-brought-its-couture-collection-to-china-1235000807/ Why Balenciaga Brings Its Haute Couture Collection to China – WWD


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