There isn’t one single word that can sum up what’s hip and fashionable in the Imperial city of Beijing. However, one thing is for certain, from viewing what people are going for in the hutongs and courtyard houses it is very much Beijing’s old folk crafts that are at the roots of the latest styles and designs.
Photo: MK Media Productions
In the glitzy shopping areas of Wangfujing, Xidan, Qianmen and Dongsi one can find classic Beijing wares, and in the newer more trendy shopping strips of Gulou and Nanluoguxiang shoppers are delighted to find small shops opened by young fashionable designers selling the latest blends of cutting edge fashion with a strong Beijing flavor.
The following guide is to six of Beijing’s trendiest shops, ranging from accessories to jackets:
1. Xingmu Handicrafts: This small shop opened by several young Beijing rockers sells a mind boggling array of handmade notebooks. With its location on Yandai Xiejie just off the popular leisure spot, Houhai, the young rock and rollers produce notepads in hundreds of different designs, from traditional paintings and calligraphy, to bronze rubbings and cloth. A new product to look out for is their range of paper lamps.
Add: 2 Yandai Xiejie (Houhai)
Tel: 8404 3217, 8404 1831
2. ARRTCO: Laid out like a huge art gallery or something resembling a child’s bedroom, ARRTCO specializes in clothes and accessories to match maybe only some of the most modern tastes by combining both the latest in Chinese and international design.
Add: 14-16 Second Floor Joy City, Xidan
3. Ruifuxiang: Despite Beijing being home to hundreds of tailors, there is something comforting about Ruifuxiang, making it the place to come for your traditional Chinese tailored goods such as jackets and Qipao skirts. This laozihao or ‘time honored brand’ has been on the same spot on Wangfujing for decades. In fact, many of the old Beijing ladies working there are almost as old!
Add: 190 Wangfujing
Tel: 6303 2880
4. Lu 12.28: For girls who like whacky and originally designed clothes and dolls, this is the place. Everything is designed and made on sight by the owner, Lu, who can be found most days sewing yet another small doll. All the products are displayed on small cards which customers can select from. All in all a bit of different shopping experience.
Add: 56 Nanluoguxiang, Dongcheng District
Tel: 8402 7403
5. Jingxiu: This tiny shop tucked down a little alleyway (hutong) off Beijing’s fashionable Nanluoguxiang sells some of the classiest handmade embroideries in the capital. With colors and designs inspired by Old Beijing, the clothes and accessories here make a perfect keepsake or souvenir.
Add: 1 Fuxiang Hutong (off Nanluoguxiang), Dongcheng District
6. Zemo Elysee: In one of Beijing’s newest and most fashionable shopping locations, Sanlitun, Zemo Elysee brings a whole new meaning to ‘street’ clothes. The designers here have combined elegance with punk rocker rebellion to concoct something rather special and unique to Beijing.
Add: 001 ‘Nali’, Sanlitun North Street
Tel: 6413 2187
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