by Martina Fuchs
LONDON, Sept. 21 (Xinhua) -- London Fashion Week in the British capital has witnessed a never-before-seen representation and diversity of new designers and models on the catwalks showing their spring/summer 2023 collections, with voices calling for even more collaborations with Chinese businesses and creators.
"For me, the most important thing is to combine the two cultures (East and West)," said Chinese designer Ruirui Deng who graduated from the renowned Central Saint Martins in London and presented her first ever collection at London Fashion Week.
Meanwhile, 36-year-old Irish-Chinese designer Simone Rocha said she wanted to push boundaries with her new collection.
"I'm really interested in femininity and masculinity, and I think that can come in all different shapes and sizes and cultures. It's really nice to be able to project that when sharing the collections in a very natural way," said the designer, who debuted at London Fashion Week in September 2010.
Rocha is hoping to expand her business in China, the designer said backstage after her runway show at the historic Old Bailey in central London, also known as the Central Criminal Court of England and Wales.
"The last few years have been challenging with the pandemic, but pre-pandemic we were planning to grow in China. So hopefully, we will continue to do so now," she said.
London Fashion Week ran in digital and physical formats on Sept. 16-20. Shows on Sept. 19 were rescheduled due to the royal funeral of Queen Elizabeth II. The line-up included more than 110 catwalks and presentations featuring many established brands.
The clothing trade show organized by the British Fashion Council takes place in February and September each year and is one of the 'Big Four' fashion weeks alongside New York, Milan and Paris.
"London Fashion Week is embracing diversity and inclusion. If we go back a decade, how many Asian designers were there? Now you can name a few, Claudia Wang, Susan Fang, and many more," said Nick Isles, CEO of the Conde Nast College of Fashion & Design, who is keen on promoting diversity and inclusion across the sector.
"We're looking to grow globally," he told Xinhua. "Asia has been one of the big areas of growth in the past and will be in the future." ■