Homegrown Chengdu shoe brand calls for more open mindset in accepting East-West integration
By Wei Lynn Tang
"Integrating the traditions of the "East with the technical know-how and popular elements of the West into a pair of shoes" - that's the motto for Sheme, a homegrown Chengdu brand that has been around for almost 20 years.
Its founder, Linda Liu, said one should adopt a more open mindset and attitude to studying the Chinese culture and in accepting diversified attempts to meet consumer demand.
“We have studied the top 10 brands in the world. We seek to integrate traditional Chinese culture - with every single needle and thread - with that of what's buzzing and creative in the fashion world internationally,” she shared.
In this regard, she highlighted the Italian, French and German culture as examples.
“Because to only produce traditional Chinese shoes...can be rigid. While to only go international [without any fundamental traditional backing], it would be impossible for us to surpass global influential brands,” Liu told CGTN.
“As China gains more recognition worldwide, and Chinese women grow more confident in going global, we have become not only consumers of local brands, but also disseminators of beautiful designs internationally.”
Liu said the brand only just entered Europe, with Asia and China still serving as its main markets.
The Sheme brand is one of the 1,000 creative design companies - from 30 countries and regions - participating at the 5th Chengdu Creative and Design week, held from November 9 to 12.
At the fashion show, the brand unveiled one of its newest innovative designs: a thigh-high boots with design motifs from the Sichuan opera, a famous local stage tradition.
The Sheme brand incorporates the Shu embroidery - influenced by themes of flowers, leaves, mountains and rivers - into its artwork.
Shu embroidery, also known as “Chuan” (i.e. the “Chuan” in Sichuan) embroidery, is one of China's four main styles of ancient needlework; with the other three being Suzhou, Xiang, and Yue embroideries.