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Hong Kong Designers Make Successful Debut at Tokyo Collection

Six Hong Kong designers made their successful debut at the prestigious "2000 Spring/Summer Tokyo Collection" last week, receiving overwhelming response from Japanese buyers and media who were amazed by the variety of Hong Kong designs and the uniqueness of each participating designer.

Under the auspices of the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (TDC), designers Walter Ma, William Chan, Joanna Chu Liao, Johanna Ho, Silvio Chan and Lu Lu Cheung presented their imaginative visions at a "Hong Kong Designers Saluting the New Millennium" show, and had led buyers flocking to their exhibition on the following two days which generated business value worth of US$900,000, including orders under-negotiation.

Visiting buyers, most of them from Japanese department stores and specialty stores, were very impressed by the wide variety of fashion on offer, which ranged from young and fun look to chic and modern styles.

Barneys Japan's representative, Mr. Takashi Matsui, who used to source from Europe and the US, was very glad to see Hong Kong designer collections at Tokyo Collection.

"The show was far better than expected, the style of each designer was so unique. We have placed orders with Johanna Ho this time, and I am also very interested in Walter Ma's designs," said Mr. Matsui.

Ms. Akiko Taniguchi, fashion director of Seibu Department Store, also revealed her intention to buy from the participating designers.

"We may choose some designers' items for our fashion floor. Lu Lu would be good for the young/career floor. Silvio Chan's fashion can be sold as uni-sex products," said Ms. Taniguchi.

Mr. Hideyuki Otani, director of Nippon Trading Co. Ltd., was fascinated by William Chan's collection.

"His design is full of new and innovative ideas. His 'having fun' design concept will appeal to the young people hanging around in Shibuya," said Mr. Otani.

Mail order house Fujisankei Living Service was interested to buy from Joanna Chu Liao.

"The show was so much fun with six different characters. I was extremely impressed by Joanna Chu Liao's creations which combine high quality with good workmanship," said Mr. Masato Izawa of Fujisankei Living Service.

The Hong Kong designers' collection had also won wide support from the Japanese media. Many of them compared their creativity to those of the Japanese designers.

"I think the designs by Walter Ma and Joanna Chu Liao will be well accepted by Japanese consumers, and the collection from William Chan and Lu Lu Cheung were also very appealing; their creation level such as colour combination and selection of materials are as high as those of Japanese designers," said Mr. Ichikawa of Nihon Seni Shimbun.

"Comparing to Japanese designers, I think these Hong Kong designers have their originality in the design. I am very much interested in the future development of these designers," said Ms. Kayo Yoshio from Japanese fashion magazine Mr. HiFashion.

"This show was full of creations and new ideas, which made me aware that there are some talented young designers coming up in HK," said Mr. Akira Mishima, a freelance journalist, as well as the director of a fashion research institute Gendai Kozo Kenkyusho.

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For media enquiries, please contact Mrs. Winnie Hui of HKTDC's media & corporate communications department at 2584-4537.

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Content provided by Hong Kong Trade Development Council