CENTRESTAGE sharpens digital edge
As the fashion show’s physical elements return with the easing of COVID restrictions, CENTRESTAGE is also augmenting its virtual offerings.
29 August 2022
Organised by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) and sponsored by Create Hong Kong (CreateHK) of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government, CENTRESTAGE returns to the spotlight from 9 to 11 September. The three-day event will open to fashion buyers and also the general public, featuring a number of in-person as well as virtual exhibitions, with visitors able to immerse themselves in augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) interactive experiences.
HKTDC Deputy Executive Director Sophia Chong said: “In recent years, innovative ideas have been integrated into the designs, materials, manufacturing, sales and customer experience of the fashion industry, with the advent of new technologies creating even more possibilities. This year’s CENTRESTAGE will have ‘Inclusion and Diversity’ as its central theme, with an emphasis on authentic self-expression, projecting a common goal of enabling everyone to express their bold imagination through beauty and aesthetics. The three-day event will feature 20 fashion shows and showcase the latest collections of more than 230 brands from 15 countries and regions. A series of digital experiences have been added in 2022, amplifying the enjoyment of this iconic event.”
CENTRESTAGE ELITES (main picture) is the spotlight opening gala show, featuring Hong Kong and Japanese brands DEMO and Children of the discordance – both chosen by Fashion Asia Hong Kong as among the 10 Asian Designers to Watch in 2020. Derek Chan will launch the latest 2023 spring/summer collection of his gender-neutral fashion label DEMO, together with co-founder Mite Chan. Japanese designer Hideaki Shikama, founder of young fashion label Children of the discordance will be showcasing his collection in Hong Kong for the first time. The show will be livestreamed through the CENTRESTAGE fair website as well as Facebook and Instagram.
The Fashion Hong Kong Runway Show will feature six Hong Kong brands presenting their 2023 spring/summer collections. Participating labels include 112 mountainyam, which uses vivid colours to express confidence; ANGUS TSUI, which highlights sci-fi elements in its designs; BLIND by JW, which merges fashion with art tech; Bettie Haute Couture, which has a focus on bespoke women’s clothing; SUN=SEN, which emphasises playfulness in its designs; and V VISSI, which works on promoting social inclusion through fashion design. Sustainability is an important issue for the fashion industry, and this year the designers will debut collections that use sustainable materials. Local enterprise Novetex Textiles Limited has been invited to work with the designers, each of whom will use upcycled fibres from The Billie System to create distinctive designs. Visitors are also encouraged to donate their old 100% cotton T-shirts or polo shirts through the Fashion Hong Kong booth, with the first 100 donors receiving a limited-edition souvenir made with upcycled materials.
A series of “Brand Collection Shows” and “Designer Collection Shows” will be launched over the three days of the event. The former will feature a number of renowned Hong Kong fashion brands while the latter will showcase the best works from different fashion designers. In addition, this year's CENTRESTAGE is honoured to welcome the participation of Fashion Farm Foundation (FFF), which works to promote Hong Kong fashion design. Sponsored by CreateHK, “FFF – Fashion Forward GBA” is an event staged in celebration of the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the HKSAR on the first day of the show, with participating designers including local brands YMDH and Charlotte Ng Studio. The “Hong Kong Kids Fashion Show”, which is always eagerly anticipated by fashion-loving parents, will be held on 11 September.
This year’s event continues to put the focus on up-and-coming local design talents. The seven Hong Kong designer brands that will present in the FASHIONALLY Collection #19 fashion show on day one (9 September) are ARTO., CAR|2IE, FromClothingof, KEVIN HO, Lapeewee, REDEMPTIVE and WHY. Three FASHIONALLY Presentation shows will be held on 9 and 10 September with three emerging local fashion labels launching their latest collections, namely Wilsonkaki and new participants Kowloon City Boy and Vo-yage.
Another highlight will be the final of the Hong Kong Young Fashion Designers’ Contest 2022 (YDC) on 11 September. The annual YDC has been introducing new faces to the industry every year since 1977. The star-studded judging panel in 2022 includes fashion industry leader, buyers, editors and stylists, with CENTRESTAGE ELITES participating Japanese designer Hideaki Shikama invited as the overseas VIP judge.
The 10 shortlisted competitors will compete for four honours, namely Overall Champion, the Excellence Award, the Best Visual Presentation Award and the “My Favourite Collection Award”. For the latter, members of the public can vote for their favourite collection online and stand the chance to win one of seven HK$2,000 Lee Gardens Area e-gift coupons sponsored by Hysan Development.
This year’s CENTRESTAGE offers a trip to the metaverse with numerous physical-digital experiences to enhance visitors' enjoyment. The fairground will feature a number of interactive experiences, such as the CENTREVERSE, jointly developed by Microsoft AltspaceVR and Mirum, where visitors can create their own fashion avatar and interact with others in a virtual world, and even use AR tools to dress up. Various seminars will be organised during the show, looking into topics such as how artificial intelligence is being applied in the fashion industry, the development of the metaverse, sustainability in fashion and trend forecasts.
CENTRESTAGE will be held alongside the Watch & Clock Fair and Salon de TE, meaning visitors can shop for fashion apparel and quality watches from around the world under one roof. A lucky draw for the special “CENTRESTAGE X Watch & Clock” will be held over the weekend (10-11 September).
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