Established as a design workshop in 1986 and as a retail group in 1990, Blanc de Chine is a Chinese luxury brand that takes seriously its vision of merging traditional Chinese cultural values into modern fashion that fits today’s lifestyle. Its design symbolizes Chinese cultural authenticity through the concepts of time, structure, and senses.
Blanc de Chine’s Fall/Winter 2011 collection, which featured the five elements: metal, wood, water, fire and earth, was shown at the recent New York Fashion Week.
The Five Elements, known as “Wu Xing,” are the Chinese philosophy of dynamic change, representing interactions and relationships. Each is defined as follows:
- Wood represents energy and the root of life
- Fire represents heat and uprising
- Earth represents the origin of life
- Metal represents the properties of change
- Water represents the endless stream of liquidity
Blanc de Chine’s Women’s Fall Collection is inspired by wood. The Chinese wooden architectural feature of “Upturned Eaves” was translated into clothing with bell sleeves of varying lengths and curved collars.
Meanwhile, its Women’s Winter Collection was inspired by the bronze ceremonial urn from the Shang Dynasty. This was translated into clothing with wide-brimmed cuffs, collars and hems, and subtle embroideries reminiscent of the antique urn.
For evening wear, Blanc de Chine designed a modern Chinese Qi Pao dress whose details give appearance of fire. Its menswear collection was inspired by water, earth, and metal and the traditional Chinese armor.
photo credit: shawn punch photography and slaven vlasic/getty images