by Susanna Lau .

Qing, Mao and Mae


Give me a Chinese themed collection and I could analyse it to death until the cows come home. There was much to probe in to at Jason Wu - Mao's communist garb, The Last Emperor and Qing dynasty pomp and then the dissemination of the Chinese image in Hollywood. It wasn't a straightforward exercise of Chinoiserie and that can only be down to Wu's own Taiwanese background. Controversial, but I'm going to say this now - this complex pondering of how Chinese culture can be convincingly incorporated into fashion without it becoming a camp pagoda fest, can only come from someone who is ACTUALLY Chinese. Wu dug deep into his roots and came out with gold in parts, particularly in the opening looks of Mao green military chic. Sumptuous Qing costume embroidery were successfully transplanted to form fitting jackets and dresses. For this amount of food for thought on my part, I'll forgive Wu for the unleashing of the red tasselled hats, reminiscent of many a Chinese costume drama that my mum used to subject me to.