In the previous article about qipao I tried to follow the trends in popularity of this famous Chinese dress. Just like any style of fashion it knew good and bad days, and nowadays – after years of neglecting in China itself – it is becoming popular again. Qipao does not fit everyone and not everyone likes it, but I am certainly the fan of this style!
However, just few years ago I and my friends regarded qipao as an extravagant dress with extremely bright colors not suitable for usual outfit. None of us had it in our wardrobes and while passing by the special qipao stores we never stopped to have a second look. In our minds it was just a traditional dress worn on special occasions (for example, during the weddings or some official ceremonies as a national symbol). It hardly could be imagined as a daily costume.
About two and a half years ago a client – young and very stylish American woman – came to our company. At that time I worked in Chongqing travel company as a sales manager. After discussing the tour details, she asked me to show her the nearby qipao stores (there were many stores selling tailor-made qipao in a street near the office building).
And it was my first time to have a closer look at qipao. My curiosity was aroused by the fact that a foreign lady who definitely had a good taste in fashion found those costumes attractive. I quickly got the answer why she liked them.
Seeing those beautiful colorful dresses made my eyes shining like a child’s who came to a BIG candy store… Before leaving the shop both of us ordered qipao from the album.
After a week I was a proud owner of my first tailor-made qipao. I liked it so much! And beyond expectations I got a lot of compliments from other people: cousins, friends and colleagues – all asked me where I had bought it, how much was the cost, what was the name of the store and so on.
Soon, I went to buy the second qipao and then the third one… Am I a little bit crazy, huh? Now there are FIVE (!!!) qipao in my wardrobe and I love all of them :-)
Here is the short description of the dresses (you can also see them in the pictures).
First qipao: blue with big yellow flowers. I asked the tailor to make a “v”-neckline (since it better fits my round face) and slits on both sides. The dress is sleeveless and has a bottom line just above knees.
Second qipao: bright-yellow with many colorful flowers, bigger “V” collar and traditional qipao buttons. This one can serve as a good example of classical oriental style.
Third qipao: I think that this pink-colored dress fits my yellow skin. More modern style with deep cut partly covered with transparent pink yarn. Hints of sleeves. No buttons. This light dress is especially good for Chongqing hot summer.
Fourth qipao: also pink. Simple, but fashionable. Has no collar. Glass accessories are sewed into the dress around the neckline. The dress is ornamented with big flowers. This is my favorite one!
Fifth qipao: light blue, with fancy yellow inset. The collar can be elevated to a stand-up form. The pattern is made of small flowers some of which have the shape of phoenix. It’s suitable for everyday.
I bought it last year – before going abroad: it was a little gift to myself – since I knew how much I would miss those special stores offering tailor-made qipao.
And now the winter is over, warm days will come soon and I can not help daydreaming…
Dreaming about the sixth qipao, Crystal Tao