Asia’s premier fashion event CENTRESTAGE was held September 10-12, 2021 in Hong Kong. The event brought together more than 200 fashion brands from 24 countries and regions, with 30 fashion events taking place over the three-day extravaganza. Hong Kong fashion brands such as RICKYY WONG STUDIO, KanaLili, and Sparkle by Karen Chan, featured above, showcased their latest collections.
CENTRESTAGE attracted over 2,550 trade buyers and more than 17,200 public visitors to participate and source fashion items. Over course of the three days, almost 700 video business meetings were arranged to match global fashion buyers with exhibitors online.
Organized by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) and sponsored by Create Hong Kong (CreateHK) of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, it is the first and largest fashion event staged in Hong Kong since the pandemic began.
"Chapter Infinity" challenges us to reignite design inspiration during the pandemic.
The sixth CENTRESTAGE ran with “Chapter Infinity” as its central theme, encouraging those in the fashion industry to take creative approaches and reignite their design inspiration in the pandemic era, exploring the countless opportunities that lie ahead.
Local and International designers shined, enhancing the visibility of young fashion brands with more than 20 fashion shows held during the exhibition. The spotlight opening gala show, CENTRESTAGE ELITES, featured the global launch of the 2022 spring/summer collections from local designers Calvin Chan and Joyce Kun’s renowned brand The World Is Your Oyster, as well as acclaimed Korean designer Lee Mooyeol’s brand, YOUSER. Extended reality (XR) was used to boost the stage shows, which attracted many industry professionals, celebrities and fashionistas. Augmented reality (AR) effects were employed to enhance the online viewing experience.</p>
HKTDC Deputy Executive Director Benjamin Chau said: “The fair helped industry participants exchange the latest fashion information and develop their businesses. I am pleased to see talented designers launching their latest fashion collections and apparel, showing an endless stream of creativity and vitality". Director Chau explained that the show was fully open to public visitors for the very first time, which allowed fashionistas and Influencers to experience the event for themselves.
70% of CENTRESTAGE exhibitors and buyers say "seasonless collections" will be the top trend for 2022.
The HKTDC conducted a survey during the show to gauge future product trends and the outlook for the fashion industry, interviewing more than 290 exhibitors and buyers. On fashion trends, 45% of those surveyed expected casual wear and city wear to be the most popular in 2022, followed by fashion accessories (24%) and sportswear (14%). Regarding their promotional strategies in the coming year, 70% either agreed or completely agreed that “seasonless” collections would be the most prevalent trend in the fashion industry next year, while 62% expected the “see now, buy now” model would also be popular.
On sales prospects and the market outlook for 2022, 53% of respondents believed that overall sales would increase in the coming year–a significant increase on the 31% who expressed the same sentiment at the 2019 CENTRESTAGE, while 33% expected things to remain steady. Fifty-four percent expected production or sourcing costs to increase while 40% expected they would remain unchanged. When asked how the pandemic has impacted the fashion business, respondents stated that a drop in sales/revenue (64%), rising sourcing and production costs (27%), and a decrease in the number of physical shops (26%) were the main consequences.
Brands expand their international footprint at CENTRESTAGE
Trade shows like CENTRESTAGE are important educational, marketing, and sourcing opportunities for brands who need to expand their global footprint. Brands like THAT’S CHONG, a wedding and bridal accessory brand, successfully participated in CENTRESTAGE for the first time. Director Boo Chong said she connected with an exporter who will help expand the company’s overseas market, and found new suppliers for Japanese ribbons and trimmings.
Sustainable fashion was front and center with Fashion Summit (Hong Kong) 2021, holding a forum focused on sustainable development in the fashion industry with the theme “Design for the Future”. While the world’s largest sustainable fashion design competition, Redress, presented the Redress Design Award 2021 to designer Jessica Chang, who holds a BA in Fashion Design from Parsons School of Design, in New York. She is currently developing her own sustainable fashion brand in Taiwan focusing on zero-waste, up cycling, and reconstruction.
The catwalk show, Fashion Go Places, celebrated Hong Kong designers who have appeared at international fashion weeks. METHODOLOGY Creative Director Glori Tsui said it was already the sixth year participating in CENTRESTAGE. The company showcased its latest casual collection for women, along with bags and jewelry, attracting a lot of attention and achieving positive results.
CENTRESTAGE is organised by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) andsponsored by Create Hong Kong (CreateHK) of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. Follow HKTDC Fashion Hong Kong on Instagram here.
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