A World of Phygital

powered by Vogue Hong Kong
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Welcome Message

CENTRESTAGE 2020 marks the fifth iteration of one of Asia’s premier fashion events. For the first time, the annual spectacle is taking place online, integrating imagination with technology to offer a digital experience and open up new possibilities for the industry.

The theme, ‘A World of Phygital’, highlights the creative combination of physical and digital elements in a fashion event that responds to prevailing circumstances. Free of spatial and temporal constraints, the new format enables buyers and fashionistas to view the latest designs anytime, anywhere while helping designers gain broader exposure and foster connections.

A total of 240 international designer labels and fashion brands are showcased. In the spotlight is a series of six virtual runway shows to be premiered to a worldwide audience. Designers’ latest collections are featured on an interactive digital platform jointly developed by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council and our digital content partner Vogue Hong Kong.

Our thanks also go to Create Hong Kong (CreateHK) of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, for its continued support to the local fashion community.

I hope CENTRESTAGE 2020 will offer a new experience that excites both established and emerging fashion designers as well as brings fresh perspectives to the industry as a whole.

Margaret Fong
Executive Director | Hong Kong Trade Development Council

A Brave New World

A new world is, naturally, defined by new boundaries. Phygital is at the forefront of it all. The term represents the hybrid of a physical and digital experience, and the way of life going forward. Fashion, which has long encapsulated the best of creativity, emotional resonance and passion, is also entering this Phygital era. 

CENTRESTAGE, which has been supporting both Hong Kong’s and international amazing creatives in the fashion industry, is proud to be on this journey by presenting A World of Phygital - putting our designers at the forefront of this experience. Watching a new generation of designers exploring sense and sensibility in this Phygital age creates a reality with a utopian vision. Those who dare to dream are able to create and shape their reality!  

Vogue Hong Kong is proud to be part of the conversation and connection with our fashion community. The world may be filled with uncertainties, but the spirit of creativity and passion will triumph against all odds. Let us make the brave new world, a better world!

Desiree Au
Publisher | VOGUE Hong Kong

Blind by JW

The designer duo Walter Kong and Jessica Lau co-founded the womenswear brand BLIND by JW in 2012. With Jessica as a graduate from Central Saint Martins (UAL) and Walter as a graduate from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, their apparel and handbags also manifest their “East-meets-West” character.

  • The fashion industry has officially welcomed the digital age. How do you feel about different brands experimenting with the phygital format?

    I think it's a good thing considering how much easier it is to approach and communicate with potential customers who like our designs and style through digital merchandising. It is challenging but definitely worth a try.

  • How do you think independent brands or young designers should prepare for the phygital transition in fashion?

    Nowadays, there are a lot of illustration or 3D modelling softwares that are made widely available and accessible for the general public. Aspiring young designers should equip themselves with these skills before launching a business as these will really help with their future brand development and design process.

  • What is the meaning behind the name of your brand?

    “Blind” refers to window blinds—imagine raising the blinds and a dreamy world comes into your sight. Vibrant colours are used in our womenswear to depict this image, and we want our designs to look cool and emanate elegance while expressing individuality.

  • You two have attended universities in London and Hong Kong respectively. Did the difference in your educational backgrounds spark any unexpected ideas during your collaboration?

    Coming from different backgrounds, we are constantly seeking ways to reflect these beautiful yet distinctive cultural differences in our designs. Our brand focuses primarily on exploring the modern woman style by creating modernised and feminine womenswear with artistic and creative flairs, such as using bold prints with feminine tailoring, adding hand-drawn watercolour prints, or even putting QR code prints on our garments and handbags. Our working styles are also different because of our cultural backgrounds—one is more efficient and the other prefers to enjoy a slower-paced life. Such contrasts and differences do stimulate our creativity at the same time.

  • You specialise not only in apparel but also handbags. Where do you find inspiration for your playful designs? What is the biggest difference in designing between the two?

    They are the same to us. Taking our handbag collection as an example — we incorporated QR codes into the map pattern on the handbags. By scanning the QR codes , you will be redirected to the photos of the corresponding locations. Although the pattern was first printed onto scarves only, it was later applied on handbags and even clothes as well. You could say that the biggest difference merely lies in the materials used, and that’s about it.

  • What are your plans for the future?

    We hope to collaborate with different organisations from different sectors, and be inspired to come up with even more interesting designs.