Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Going to her head

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Hairbands designed for the girls who like to let fashion go to their heads: Glittering gemstones, velvet ribbons, frothy feathers, Swarovski crystals are all part of the Alexandre Zouari collection. [Provided to China Daily]

Gan Tian looks at how the fashionistas are reviving the art of hair accessories

Yang Mi, a 28-year-old office worker in Beijing, is busy preparing for an important party. She has already got a velvet evening dress, a delicate watch, an expensive diamond necklace, and a pair of stylish high-heeled shoes. But she still feels something is missing. She suddenly realizes that what she needs is an elegant accessory for her hair.

The choices now are bewildering and Yang had spent two days downtown shopping for something suitable. She had found a little hat, decorated with diamonds and two large feathers.

In Shanghai, Huang Peixue, who is holding her wedding ceremony on Oct 5, has already picked out her white gown. After watching the British royal wedding, she wants a breathtakingly beautiful hat to go with her outfit.

Hair accessories, which had lost popularity with Chinese women for a time, are making a comeback.

In ancient times, Chinese women used to have elaborate buns and hairdos adorned by intricate hair ornaments, but since the 1950s, such styles were largely abandoned. Instead, simple clips, barrettes and hair bands took over.

High-end hair accessories have enjoyed a renaissance in the past two years, especially for special occasions like parties or weddings.

"Usually, it is socialites who wear hair feathers, small hats, and some other diamond accessories, but since 2009, more and more people are wearing them to match their styles on formal occasions," says Zhao Wei, jewelry editor of Harper's Bazaar China.

French giant Louis Vuitton recently launched a hair band it has named Ruban Bijou. It has the label's iconic pink floral monograms, and has proved very popular. Prada and Fendi also pushed out several high-end hair accessories these couple of years.

In 2008, Hong Kong businessman Thomas Lee introduced renowned French hairstylist Alexandre Zouari's label to China. Zouari had worked with some of the most glamorous style icons of the day, including France's first lady Carla Bruni and entertainer Shirley Bassey.

In his 2011 fall/winter collection, Alexandre Zouari showcased ornaments that combine plastics, metals, Swarovski crystals, leathers, furs and haute couture fabrics. According to Lee, these are all classic elements from the 1970s, which has inspired current trends.

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taken from : China Daily

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