CPHNS’s 100th Post!! : Shanghai’s Top 5 Sartorial Trends

Happy 4th of July everyone!! And apologies for not posting for over a week, but I’ve been moving and my internet has been down; furthermore, I’ve been delaying this post a bit because it’s chinesepeoplehavenostyle’s 100th post, so it had to be super special in order to commemorate our 100th post, almost 10,000 hits, and the birth of America!!

So I’ve ambitiously tried summarized China’s sartorial trends for this post, which was certainly no easy feat… But I feel like after 2 years on the Mainland and 9,000 pictures later, I’m semi-qualified to break down Shanghai’s unique “look” into 5 categories that are characteristic of Shanghai’s collective style:

1 – CHILLIN’. Chinese people love to chill anywhere and everywhere, and it seems like they are more comfortable in public space sometimes than in their own homes. They love to loiter around the hood, wear their pajamas in the streets, and generally treat public space as private space. The cutest manifestation of this trend I’ve witnessed has definitely been old people dancing in the streets… More on this, generally loitering practices, and related chill styles coming soon.

2 – LITERAL. Besides disgusting LV monograms and Burberry tartan plastered all over the bags and chests of most Chinese people, they also often don English slogans which are ridiculous yet sometimes surprisingly appropriate. This is certainly a popular and “fashionable” trend in China, but it seems like most of these people have no idea what their clothing actually says…

3 – THE HEAD. This includes all headgear such as hats and hair, which have traditionally been the site for exhibitionism in Chinese fashion. In the 1930s and 1940s in China, the bigger your hair the better, and that creed seems to generally be as true today as it was then. Hats are also quite funky and interesting, and are worn a lot by people on bikes…

4 – BIKES. Biking is totally a thang in China, and it seems like there is a whole style that has developed around it with hats, gloves, plastic bags when it rains, Darth Vader masks in the summertime. I haven’t posted much about this trend before, but I’ve gathered quite a few pictures, so check back this week to see some more bike style.

5 – THE CLASH. This is the most important category, as it represents all of the above and more… The “clash” can describe Shanghai’s collective style or look, which is a sometimes contentious mixture of seemingly opposed, conflicting concepts: East vs. West, tradition vs. modernity, convention vs. progress, communism vs. capitalism, native vs. foreign culture, subtle vs. brash, etc. Sometimes the results of “clashing” are good, and sometimes it’s not so good. But regardless, this clothing style reflects Shanghai’s unique and sometimes endearingly bizarre sartorial culture; and in the end, there are some hysterical and inspiring “looks” to come from these strange mixtures of perspective and clothing.

To give you an idea on what this mixture actually looks like, here is one little girl who is Clashing with a capital “C”:

I’ll be posting about a different category every day, with about 10 pictures for each to illustrate the points I summarized earlier… That way you can have a bit of time to digest, instead of me giving it to you all at once. So check back tomorrow for some chillin’ Chinese people and relaxed style.