Friday, 28 March 2008

Iris Germanica Polar Night fashion show

I'm going through a bit of a fashion phase. It all started last Friday night when I watched a historical fashion documentary series called "A Stitch in Time" on ICS at 9pm. It would be on every night for a week (?) at the same time. I watched almost every episode. It is not a serious documentary and very fascinating, light-hearted and comical.

Then, a few days ago I got around to watching my "The Notebook" DVD (cried my eyes out of course) but thinking back to the doco, I found myself noticing the gorgeous clothes/dresses that Rachel McAdams wore in the film. I have to say I really don't like any of the fashion from the 80s onwards. I don't like recent styles which have consisted of big sack baggy things. I HATE them. I also hate the incessant cleavage-showing low-cut v-neck 'things'. Ugh. I despise them. Give me the gorgeous 30s, 40s, 50s fashions any day! The fitted waist, the sleeves (when was the last time you saw a female wear sleeves to a formal function?!), the flared skirt, the structured cotton instead of floppy fabrics. Not saying I don't like the 'floppy' fabrics like silk, viscose, satin, etc. But usually they are just too sacky and baggy looking. Not to mention the freakin' empire line which is great if you are pregnant, and if you are not it'll surely make you look pregnant!

There are some of the types of dresses I hate from

About two weeks ago hubby got an email from some Shanghai expat thing about a fashion show/parade. Strange, that he got one and I didn't (considering I'm on the internet the whole time, and I was the one who went to the Shanghai expat trade fair back in September!) His thought was that because I had a Chinese surname they just kinda ignored me as they thought I was a local. Who knows if there is any truth to that?!

Anyway, so he asked if I wanted to go and I said Yes. I was quite excited to be honest as I hadn't been to one for many years, and have always enjoyed them, even the free ones.

The brand is Iris Germanica and the ticket cost was 150 RMB per person (pre-sale, or 180 at the door). It was at the Paramount building (218 Yuyuan Lu) and started at 8pm.

We got there at 7:45pm and just stood around till they finally let everyone in (through a metal detector!) at 8pm. I haven't been to a nightclub for so long I'd forgotten what they looked like. Well this was black, with couches and bar stools and trippy laser lighting everywhere. It was pretty cool and I was excited and pumped to see this collection!

The ticket included 2 drinks per person and fruit. Since we got there pretty early we got one of the best seats in the house. I ended up sitting next to a nice middle-aged man from Amsterdam (who'd been here 3 years, and who knew the designer) and chatted to him a bit during the night (well, yelling into each other's ears more like it).

About half an hour later the bar upstairs was open and everyone started to get drinks. Hubby went to get mine for me and 'met' the guy next to me at the bar and apparently they had a little chat too.

After that it all went downhill. 8:30 turned to 9, 9 turned to 9:30. EVERYONE was getting really impatient. Blank looks on people's faces, people playing games on their mobile/cell phones... As the smoke levels rose inside my tolerance levels decreased. I would've fallen asleep from boredom if it weren't for the extremely loud music! I was getting rather impatient (can you blame me?) and went to ask them what time they planned on starting the show. The first guy said 10:30 and I was like "What??!!" and the second guy said 10. It was 9:40 when I asked and I just wandered about and took my time in the bathroom and eventually went back to my seat at 9:50 just when they were starting. Or so we thought.

Then, there was about 15 mins of 'introduction' which got more and more boring as you could barely hear them and they didn't seem like professional speakers. The girl kept dropping her papers all over the stage and she couldn't say 'dowry', she kept saying 'dowee' and the guy tried to crack jokes which noone laughed at. Hm..

OK, finally. The show. The clothes... By this time my excitement had dwindled down to almost nothing. I'm sure I wasn't the only one feeling like this either! Add to the fact that the damn smoke was getting to obscene levels and now itching my eyes as well as irritating my lungs. I reminded myself why I never go to these types of 'night' places.

The outfits were interesting to say the least. I'm not sure what I was expecting but I think there would be few I'd actually wear, and none I'd actually buy. :( (sorry if anyone from the company is reading this!) At one stage one of the outfits was so bad (the yellow checked one with the black fluffy bra thing) I gave hubby a 'look' and then looked over to the girl sitting next to him, and we both just cracked up laughing instantaneously and simultaneously.

This little number here:

There was another funny moment right at the start when this guy from nowhere with his SLR camera came over and stood right in front of us, taking photos. I was like 'what the?' The guy sitting next to me went up to him and told him to please move. Then as he was walking away (very very slowly) the three girls sitting next to us (on hubby's side) also told him to move and one of them zipped the zip on the back of his pants. I'm not sure what was going on there but all I could do at that point was just laugh my head off.


At first I thought it was because of the models.. some of them were Chinese, the other half were Caucasian, some tall, some short, some old, some young, some thin, some 'curvy' - basically a mixed bag, a representation of 'real women' as they say. At first I found this offputting but then I realised it wasn't the models at all. It was the whole thing. There was singing in the background, the models had Venetian-masks type make-up (which was nice but strange) and the clothes, weren't awful, they were just very very... erm... avant garde?

During the night waiters/waitresses came around with platters of fruit. I don't know how much fruit I ate! But even so, afterwards when it finished (around 10:30) we were both starving and went to a nearby Chinese restaurant for dinner.

I had an OK night but I thought the ticket price was a little high for what we got. But if the inside was non-smoking and they hadn't made us wait 2 hours for the show I think I would've reviewed it more favorably!

PS - I now know why Europeans like living in Shanghai so much. They can smoke to their hearts content just like they do back home, and everything costs 1/10 the price of back home! (that is a bit 'tongue in cheek' but still...) I have to say again and again I HATE SMOKING!

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