Saturday, September 01, 2007

Taiwan In Style Open

You know what it's like with exhibitions in Taipei. You go there expecting to see lots of interesting things to look over, but you leave before you've seen half of them because it's just too crowded.
You can’t look at anything quietly because there are people standing in front of you waving with free booklets, or 'hot babes' dancing around who have nothing to do with the product on show whatsoever.
Well, nothing of all that this morning at Taipei In Style at the World Trade Center. Maybe it was because I arrived within half an hour after the opening, but I think a more reasonable explanation is just that there's not much on show. If you were hoping to find the who's who of Taiwanese designers at the show, you were completely wrong. There's more Taiwan to be seen during a stroll through the Idee department store.
Charin Yeh had a stand with tasteful black dresses as you can see on the picture top left. Men's brand Carnival was also there, the only problem was: where were its clothes? The company, which was saved from obscurity by car tycoon Kenneth Yen, used its space at the show for anything but its clothes. Gioia Pan was the other big name present.
You can click on the picture at bottom left to see it better, but you're still going to see the same: a dress on the left, a dress in the middle, and a picture on the right. No personnel, no explanations, and certainly no Gioia Pan herself. You can see more of her designs at the nearby Taipei 101.
Taipei In Style also had a bunch of lesser known makers of hats, underwear, yoga gear and sports outfits, but my interest in those wasn't too high. There was an aboriginal corner, well worth checking out for its exoticism factor.
But the most enjoyable section of the show for me was the students' corner, with original and sometimes unwearable things, but still, at least they were worth looking at. You can see one of their designs in the picture on the right. The students came from three universities in Taipei and Kaohsiung.
So all in all a rather disappointing morning, but maybe I shouldn't have expected so much from a show where the entrance is free and where the generous organizers give you a free bottle of tea.
You can still check it out for yourself until Sunday evening if you're in the neighborhood. I wouldn't do so unless I had to be in the Taipei 101 area anyway.
The next event on my fashion calendar: the opening of the first Marks & Spencer in Taipei on September 15 in the former Tongling Department Store on Chunghsiao East Road section 4, that's the building housing the California Fitness and the Luxy.


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