Jonathan Saunders Joins China’s Lily as Creative Director

NEW YORK – It’s been almost two years since Jonathan Saunders resigned as chief creative officer of Diane von Furstenberg, and he has been laying low in the public eye, until now. On Sunday evening, the Scottish designer was spotted sitting next to the owners of the Chinese women’s wear brand Lily during its spring 2020 fashion show, as a part of the fourth edition of the NYFW China Day initiatives.  Multiple attendants at the show confirmed that Saunders has been creative director of the Shanghai-based brand since this past spring. He did not design the spring 2020 collection, however; his first collection for the brand will be the fall 2020 collection. Founded in 2002, Lily is an affordable Chinese brand with a focus on dressing modern office women. It operates 900-plus stores in China and 70 more around the world. A dress is priced around $ 200 and a blazer is sold for $ 150. Its parent company Orient International in one of the largest textile conglomerates in China with 67 billion renminbi, or $ 9.43 billion, in total assets, four publicly traded companies, 86,000 employees and 115 billion renminbi, or $ 16.18 billion, in annual revenue in 2018. It’s also the owner of Shanghai Fashion Week. Saunders could

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China’s Uooyaa Collaborates With Christian Lacroix on Capsule

SHANGHAI — Couturier Christian Lacroix may have left the world of fashion in 2009, but his brand continues to seek new business opportunities under the ownership of the Falic family, which also owns Duty Free Americas, the largest duty-free operator in the U.S. The Parisian brand is collaborating with Uooyaa, a Chinese premium streetwear brand, on a capsule collection with 12 pieces, featuring Lacroix’s bold prints and colors. The collection will be available at Uooyaa’s stores across China, and a limited drop will be extended to Peri.A, a fashion boutique in West Hollywood at the end of September. Uooyaa’s founder Jinxia Yin launched the brand after he left his post as vice president of the once unrivaled Chinese fast-fashion brand Meters/bonwe in 2014. Style from Uooyaa’s Christian Lacroix capsule collection.  Courtesy Photo Offering an unconventional aesthetic with a dash of Chinese elements, the brand is one of the buzzy new commercial fashion labels in the Shanghai fashion circle. The creation of the capsule was led by the Uooyaa team, while Christian Lacroix provided prints and elements for inspiration. ”We want to break the boundaries of high fashion and street culture. Christian Lacroix represents the highest form of Parisian sophistication: exceedingly romantic and exquisite, which creates this huge contrast

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China’s New Wave of Designers to Watch in Shanghai

SHANGHAI — China’s consumption power has left an indelible mark on global retail, but could its creative potential rise to that same level of impact? The jury remains out, but many attempts are being made, none more visibly than at Shanghai Fashion Week.
The event returns Wednesday and figures as China’s best place for fashion talents to showcase their collections and do serious business.
“I expect to see new creative directors to come out from this group in the near future,” said Burak Cakmak, the dean of Parsons School of Design. “In recent years, Chinese fashion designers have proven their creativity’s global relevance through the recognition they are getting at international prizes and during global fashion weeks.”
“They truly believe in what they are doing, and are not led by trend, established designers or even the market,” said Angelica Cheung, editor in chief of Vogue China. “For them, design has nothing to do with nationality, gender or age, but to express the vision. I think that’s what makes their works convincing to worldwide audiences.”
Influencer Susanna Lau, better known as Susie Bubble, has been attending Shanghai Fashion Week for the last few seasons. She had a new appreciation for what’s happening there. She said,

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China’s ‘Three Adventures of Brooke’ to Hit French Theaters (EXCLUSIVE)

Midnight Blur Films has signed a deal with French distributor Les Acacias to release Chinese arthouse drama “Three Adventures of Brooke” in France this year, the Chinese production company told Variety on Saturday. A release date has yet to be set for the film, which premiered at the Venice Film Festival and stars Chinese newcomer Xu Fangyi […]

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China’s Wanda Grows Film Business Despite Year of Turbulence

Dalian Wanda, the company that did most to thrust China into the midst of Hollywood, before being forced to pull back two years ago, reported mixed financial results for 2018. Group asset values were down for the second year, but its film business revenues grew. Holding its annual corporate meeting in Qingdao over the weekend, […]

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China’s Fan Bingbing Breaks Silence After Being Fined $70 Million for Tax Evasion

Fan Bingbing, one of China’s most popular actresses, has not been seen since in months — but she has broken her silence to address her massive tax evasion fines.

Fan was fined by Chinese tax authorities, Xinhua first reported. According to Bloomberg, Fan and her companies were fined 884 million yuan, which is equivalent to $ 129 million. Fan is responsible for $ 70 million of the fines.

Fan will not be charged if she pays back the money within a time limit, The Hollywood Reporter said that Xinhua reported. A person from her company, however, is reportedly in custody.

Fan made a statement about her situation on Weibo. She started, according to The Hollywood Reporter, “Recently I have been enduring an unprecedented amount of pain, undergoing deep self-reflection and introspection. I am deeply ashamed and feel guilty for what I have done, and I offer my sincere apologies to everyone.”

RELATED: Shakira Pays Nearly $ 25 Million in Back Taxes to Spanish Government: Report

The X-Men actress said, “I have come to realize that, as a public figure, I should have observed the law, setting a good example for society and the entertainment industry. I shouldn’t have lost the ability to control myself in the face of economic interests, allowing myself to break the law.”

Fan noted that she committed tax evasion “by taking advantage of ‘yin yang contracts’” and that she accepted the fines.

She continued, “As an actor, I take pride in showcasing our country’s culture on the global stage, and I do my best to be in the forefront of this. I owe my success to the support of my country and the people. Without the great policies of the Party and the state, without the love of the people, there would have been no Fan Bingbing.”

RELATED VIDEO: ‘RHOP’s’ Karen Huger Talks Husband Ray Owing Millions in Taxes: ‘Bad Things Happen to Good People’

“I failed my country which nurtured me; I failed the society which trusted me; I failed the fans who loved me,” she wrote. “I offer my sincere apology here once again! I beg for everyone’s forgiveness!”

One of the last times Fan was seen in public was at May’s Cannes Film Festival to promote the female spy thriller 355, which costars Jessica ChastainPenelope CruzLupita Nyong’o and Marion Cotillard.

RELATED: Cardi B Rants About What Uncle Sam Is Doing with Her Tax Money: ‘I Want Receipts’

Fan’s disappearance from public life made the news when state-run Chinese paper Securities Daily wrote that she was “under control” and “would accept the legal decision.” The story was then pulled by the outlet.

One rumor, that Fan was seeking asylum in Los Angeles, spread after Hong Kong’s The Apple Daily said that Jackie Chan had advised her to go to an immigration office. Chan’s company labeled the allegation “nonsense,” according to The Hollywood Reporter.


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Invented at Duke, Financed in Beijing: Powerful Spy Camera Shows China’s AI Ambition

After failing to win over financial backers and customers in the U.S., David Brady moved his tech startup to China. The project’s shift east offers insight into how China is emerging as a global player in pioneering technologies.
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China’s Dayang Invests in InStitchu

Dayang Group, the world’s largest suit manufacturer, has invested in another custom men’s wear maker.
InStitchu, an Australian made-to-measure start-up founded in 2012, will reveal today that it has received a $ 2.5 million strategic injection from the Chinese company to continue its expansion of showrooms around the world while also elevating the in-store and online experience.
As part of the deal, Dayang will become the production partner for InStitchu, which opened its first showroom in New York last year. The company also operates six showrooms in Australia and New Zealand.
In 2016, Dayang invested $ 30 million into the Canadian made-to-measure men’s brand, Indochino, a company with a similar business model. It also negotiated to become Indochino’s manufacturer following that investment.
For InStitchu, the funds will allow the brand to more than double its showroom count to 15, the company said. The brand is targeting both the U.S. and Australia for growth.
“The Dayang team share our vision that the future of men’s wear is made-to-measure, and in the belief that a meticulously crafted suit should be affordable,” said James Wakefield, cofounder and co-chief executive officer of InStitchu. “Dayang’s support will increase efficiencies across production and operations cycles, allowing us to be even more customer-centric. Their

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Spotify, China’s Tencent Music Unit Agree to Exchange Shares

Music streamer Spotify — ahead of an expected initial public offering in 2018 — has agreed to buy a stake in China’s Tencent Music Entertainment, which in turn will purchase an equity stake in Spotify, the companies announced Friday. Financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. Last week, the Wall Street Journal reported that Spotify and […]

Variety

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Facebook, Take Note: In China’s ‘New Era,’ the Communist Party Comes First

American technology leaders such as Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Apple’s Tim Cook should recognize that China is entering a “new era” in which, according to President Xi Jinping’s policy blueprint, the Communist Party will be supreme.
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Russia’s Riki Group, China’s Fun Union to Co-Produce ‘Krash and Hehe’ for CCTV Animation

Leading Russian animation company Riki Group is partnering up with Hong Kong-based Fun Union to co-produce “Krash and Hehe,” a new animated series which has been commissioned by China’s CCTV Animation. Aimed at primary school children, “Krash and Hehe” will be produced in CGI 3D with 2D inserts, and is slated for a release in… Read more »

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China’s Tencent Pictures to Adapt Internet Novel ‘Qing Yu Nian’

Tencent Pictures has acquired film and TV adaptation rights to an Internet novel “Qing Yu Nian,” that dabbles in martial arts, historical and fantasy themes. The company said that it has the rights after 2018 and that it had already teamed with New Classics Media to produce a TV series based on the story. The… Read more »

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Face-Lifts and Finance: China’s Kingmakers Tangle Over the Internet of Everything

In the search for new growth in the world’s biggest internet market, China’s three tech titans—Alibaba, Tencent and Baidu—are spending billions of dollars on dozens of fronts to find the next big thing. Lifestyle trends are the latest battleground.
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Cannes: China’s Weying Buys Nine Titles From Wild Bunch

China’s Weying Technology has acquired nine titles from French sales and finance company Wild Bunch. They include Cannes Official Selections and Palme D’Or contenders “Loveless” by Andrey Zvyagintsev; Michel Hazanavicius’ “Redoutable;” Jacques Doillon’s “Rodin: You Were Never Really Here: A Gentle Creature;” Cannes opening title “Ismael’s Ghosts,” by Arnaud Desplechin; and Un Certain Regard selection “Tesnota.”… Read more »

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China’s Rising Creatives Front H&M’s Asia Keys Campaign

HONG KONG–H&M is courting the Chinese streetwear fan with a special collection inspired by the Nineties. The more than 30-piece collection for both men and women, features five of the country’s leading young creatives: pop singer Fu Longfei, classical dancer Lulu Chen; Solitaire founder Mac Zhou; stylist Mia Kong, and Shanghai club owner and electronic collective founder Nikki “Sisi” Li.
Available from April 20 onwards, the “Asia Keys” collection is sold exclusively in five select markets in Asia: Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Japan and South Korea.
RELATED: Irene Kim Launches Seoul 10 Soul in Hong Kong >> 
The collection is festooned with big cartoon prints, featuring Warner Brothers characters Bugs Bunny and Donald Duck, a throwback to childhood cartoons and the light washed denim styles of three decades ago.
The cast also shed light on their philosophy for street-inspired wear.
“Many believe streetwear and sexiness are from different worlds but when you mix them together, it creates an inspiring chemistry that turns heads…,” Li said. “I also like to dress according to how I feel; my mix-and-matching inspiration usually kicks in early in the morning.”
“Your style also reflects your cultural background and lifestyle,” Kong said. “If you are able to read through the stories behind

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Pity China’s ‘bare branches’: unmarried men stuck between tradition and capitalism


Lucy Nicholson/Reuters

Xuan Li, NYU Shanghai

Chinese New Year, or the Spring Festival, is a highlight in Chinese society. But for many young people, the joy of vacation and family reunion is mixed with questions from parents and relatives about their achievements in the past year, including about their relationships.

This is a particularly stressful occasion for single men who – unless they choose to rent a fake partner or have a stroke of luck at the local marriage “market” – are forced to face the miserable fate of singlehood.

These involuntary bachelors, who fail to add fruit to their family tree are often referred to as “bare branches”, or guanggun. And the Chinese state has recently started to worry about the dire demographic trend posed by the growing number of bare branches.

The 2010 national census data suggests that 24.7% Chinese men above the age of 15 have never been married, while 18.5% of women in the same age group remain unwed.

The disparity in marital status between the sexes is particularly large in younger age groups. According to the same data source, 82.44% of Chinese men between 20 and 29 years of age have never been married, which is 15% more than women of the same age. The gap is approximately 6% among those in their 30s and less than 4% for those in their 40s or older.

Hiding in plain sight?

China’s surplus of men is attributed, at least in part, to the family planning policy implemented in the country since 1979. The One Child Policy, coupled with the patriarchal tradition of son preference, has led many families to give up on their daughters. This has happened through gender-selective abortion, infanticide or by giving away girl children.

The bitter fruit of the preference for sons is a female deficit of 20 million people in the coming decades for men of marrying age.

But there is an argument that the sex birth ratio might not be as skewed as all that. It points out that many of the “missing” girls were unregistered at birth in official records. By examining multiple waves of census data, for example, researchers have found that millions of “hidden girls” turned up in later statistics.

That being said, the extreme 118:100 sex birth ratio still points to huge pools of bachelors in China in the decades to come.

What alarms the state is not the singleton status of these men, but their socioeconomic characteristics. China’s wealth is unequally distributed across the population, with particularly huge income gaps between urban and rural populations.

As in most countries, men are expected to be the head and main provider for the family, and women are allowed and encouraged to “marry up” to males with resources. Caught between the patriarchal tradition and the widening social gap, Chinese men on the lower end of the socioeconomic ladder have a particularly hard time attracting brides.

The “marriage squeeze” would not be so devastating for these bachelors had the Chinese government been thorough and persistent with its gender equality policy. Gender equality has been written in the constitution since 1954 and has been proudly promoted by the socialist state.

New generations of Chinese women, who now make up 45% of the country’s workforce and are almost on par with their male compatriots in education enrolments, no longer need to be financially dependent on future husbands. They have the potential to shake rigid gender roles that require men to shoulder the economic burden alone.

But the translation from educational attainment to earning power and equal status is not at all straightforward. The labour market in China has become increasingly hostile towards women in recent years and the gender gap in employment rate and income have expanded.

Many young women – especially those without promising career prospects – are looking again to marriage as their once-in-a-lifetime chance for upward social mobility. This is reflected in the increasing dating costs and rocketing “bride wealth” that women request from their male partners, which further disadvantage impoverished men.

Young men – economically disadvantaged and sexually frustrated – might eventually vent their anger through violence against others, thereby threatening public security and social stability. At least, that’s what the Chinese government fears.

The conviction is not ungrounded. Social scientists argue that long-term bachelorhood not only compromises men’s well-being, but also puts hormone-fuelled, underprivileged men at risk of gravitating towards aggression, as already observed in historical China and contemporary India.

Easy targets

Social gaps are so difficult to close that the Chinese authorities are firing at the easier target: women.

Over the years, the Chinese state has tolerated sexist representations of women in high-profile media outlets, put derogatory labels on unmarried women by calling them “leftover” and describing them as “emotional” and “extreme”, and
curtailed women’s rights after divorce.

But little is discussed in official channels about abandoned girls, domestic and international human trafficking, and supporting women in workplaces.

Of course, not all “bare branches” are disadvantaged because of socioeconomic reasons. Homosexuality was formally decriminalised in China as recently as 1997 and removed from the list of mental illness in 2001.

Still excluded from the institution of marriage or any civil union, many Chinese gay men either have to stay legally single or form a sham union – often with lesbians who have the same problem. But some choose to or have had to marry straight women, causing tremendous distress to both parties.

No longer wanting to spend their lives alone or to deceive innocent straight women, Chinese gay men are starting on the long, hard fight for marriage equality. Victory is still a long way away; China abstained from voting on the UN resolution on the rights of LGBT people in 2011. And in June 2016, a Chinese court dismissed a gay couple’s lawsuit for their right to marriage.

Despite the conservative stance of the government and the dominating power of capital, there are signs of progress. In a recent survey on relationship values conducted by Tencent.com, – one of the leading internet companies in China – both male and female respondents listed “individual space” (32.8%) and “real connections” (24.6%) as their top requirements for starting a marriage. Only 9.3% males and 16.6% females put “house and car” as a requirement, suggesting a rejection of the purely materialistic model of marriage.

Similarly, in study on dating attitudes and expectations among Chinese college students, both sexes put “kind”, “loving”, “considerate” as the most desirable qualities in a romantic partner.

If they play nice and work with women to push for gender equality, perhaps there’s hope for the bare branches yet.

The Conversation

Xuan Li, Assistant Professor of Psychology, NYU Shanghai

This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

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Domestic Politics, International Bargaining and China’s Territorial Disputes

Domestic Politics, International Bargaining and China’s Territorial Disputes


This is a groundbreaking analysis of China’s territorial disputes, exploring the successes and failures of negotiations that have taken place between its three neighbours, namely India, Japan and Russia. By using Roberts Putnam’s two level game framework, Chung relates the outcome of these disputes to the actions of domestic nationalist groups who have exploited these territorial issues to further their own objectives. By using first-class empirical data and applying it to existing theoretical concepts, this book provides a detailed account of China’s land and maritime border disputes that is both clear and accessible.

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Meet Joe Wong, China’s Funniest Export

I have a particular fondness for comedians, and have had close personal friendships with some of the great ones over the years. Even as a teenager in the 1960s, my favorite reading material was not comic books, but rather biographies and autobiographies of comics– W.C Fields, Jack Benny, George Burns, Steve Allen, Groucho Marx, Red Skelton, Woody Allen, and many others, all of which I still have in my library. I also have maintained a collection of volumes of one-liners by Robert Orben, Joey Adams, and other comedy writers.

I want to introduce you to a comedian who I have never met, but with whom I have frequently communicated with since he first gained my attention about 5 years ago. Joe Wong is Chinese, and came from Beijing to the U.S. as a student in 1994. He ultimately obtained a PhD in Molecular Biology from Rice University in Houston– and he looks exactly like a guy who holds such a degree. In spite of this impressive accomplishment, he went into stand-up comedy, a decision I am sure thrilled his Chinese parents.

2015-08-29-1440823092-5375505-JoeWong.jpg

How he transformed himself from an egghead to a comic is remarkable. He went to a comedy club in Houston, where he understood nothing and loved everything about it. He joined Toastmasters International to help him with his English and public speaking. Later he moved to Boston to accept a job with a pharmaceutical firm and at night took a comedy class at a local high school. He read dictionaries, and honed his English and comedy. Eventually he qualified for the Boston Comedy Festival, and ultimately was spotted by David Letterman’s bookers.

Joe became a favorite of David Letterman and Ellen Degeneres, having made multiple appearances on both of their shows. He received a standing ovation at the White House Radio/Television Correspondence’s Dinner in 2010– a notoriously tough room.



He has a unique style, pace, delivery, look, and material. But, most importantly, he has something going for him that most comics wish they had– a stance. Like Jack Benny or Phyllis Diller, his comedic characteristics make him stand out from the crowd. He’s like a deer in the headlights, a bit surprised he’s in the spotlight, slightly reserved with a touch of socially awkwardness.

One of my favorite moments was after he finished his first national television appearance on The Late Show in 2009, Letterman approached him to shake his hand. Joe seemed unsure as to where to go or what was expected of him. It was a Wally Cox, Don Knotts, or Woody Allen moment, and the audience loved him for it.


One night I took a DVD of some of Joe’s television work to show my pal Phyllis Diller. We sat in her den watching, but Phyllis was both hard of hearing and had difficulty understanding foreign accents. After 5 minutes, Phyllis said to me “Is he speaking Chinese? I don’t understand a word he has said– but he is FUNNY!” Although she couldn’t figure out what he was saying, she did comprehend that his very essence was comical– a nerdy and nervous Chinese guy doing American style stand-up.

Ironically, Joe was discovered in and returned to China because of his U.S. television appearances. Over 50 million people in China have watched him on various internet sites, both in English and with Chinese subtitles. He was offered a gig hosting a comedy/investigative reporting show on a Chinese TV network CCTV2, and returned there to do so– with 5 to 7 million viewers per episode. In the meantime he is also performing American style standup comedy in Chinese venues and has garnered international attention, including being featured on the CBS Evening News and in the New York Times. He can perform 2 hour standup comedy shows in either English or Mandarin Chinese!

My friend, Emmy award-winning comedic actor Fred Willard, shares my passion for books on comedy and comedians, and we often exchange them with each other. He recently gave me Fred Allen’s 1954 book “Treadmill to Oblivion.” Fred Allen concludes his publication with this bittersweet observation, “When a radio comedian’s program is finally finished it slinks down Memory Lane into the limbo of yesterday’s happy hours. All the comedian has to show for his years of work and aggravation is the echo of forgotten laughter.”

I have a hunch Joe Wong’s best laughs are yet to come. It wouldn’t surprise me if he returns to the U.S. with his own sitcom that would be watched worldwide. Stay tuned.

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Impact of China’s Rise on the Mekong Region

Impact of China’s Rise on the Mekong Region


Presents a contemporary analysis of the impact of China’s rise on the Mekong Region at a critical period of Southeast Asian history. As the most populated country and the second largest economy in the world, China has become an increasingly influential player in global and regional affairs. Economic ties between China and her southern neighbors are particularly strong. Yet relations between China and the Mekong region are complex and embedded in other socio-cultural and political issues. China’s accelerated growth, increasing economic footprint, global search for energy, natural resources, and food security, and the rapid pace of its military modernization have created a wide range of new challenges for smaller countries in Southeast Asia. These new challenges both encourage and limit cooperation between China and the emerging ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). This book pays close attention to some of these challenges with particular focus on the impact of Chinese investment, trade, foreign aid, and migration”

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