The release of Ne-Tiger, a Chinese fashion house, has angered Vietnamese after the brand presented a collection of outfits which looked exactly like Vietnamese women’s iconic gown: the Ao Dai long dress at the China Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2019,
|Some designs at the show of Chinese fashion house.
The event was covered by an article on China Daily with the title “Chinese style delights China S/S Fashion Week”. Vietnamese netizens are wondering how their centuries-old national gown is now a Chinese “creation” and accused the collection a plagiarism.
The information was firstly published on China Daily, China’s national English-language newspaper in 2018 and now it is angering Vietnamese internet users who have slammed the Chinese domestic fashion brand Ne-Tiger for the copycat.
Many comments on online platforms considered the move of Ne Tiger over the Vietnamese national costumes China’s second “nine-dash line” plot in the field of culture and fashion.
“The Ao Dai has been recognized by the world as a Vietnamese iconic gown. /Be it innovation or not, it is still design thief,” a netizen commented.
“It seems that these designers have given themselves the right to copy the national dress of a country and call it their creation”, another said.
In another development, in October 2018, the Chinese website Sina reported that the collection of Ne-Tiger “was inspired” by the national outfits of countries along the maritime Silk Road 600 years ago.
Founder of the fashion brand Zhang Zhifeng said that the collection aimed to introduce traditional costumes of Southeast Asian countries emphasizing their variety of fashion styles, cultures, and histories.
For their part, some Vietnamese designers also expressed their discontent with the collection and the way Chinese media praised the copycat.
Zing.vn cited renown Ao Dai designer Vo Viet Chung as saying that Ao Dai was once copied by a Chinese designer at a fashion week in Shanghai ten years ago.
From the view of a costume designer, there is not a chance of “borrowing an idea” in fashion, he said. “Once the idea is created by a designer, it should not be used by others. In this case, Ao Dai is the Vietnamese national dress, as a result, the collection is a plagiarism and a stolen idea,” Vo Viet Chung stressed.
Miss Vietnam Dang Thi Ngoc Han, an Ao Dai model, said the designs had a similarity of almost 99% with Vietnamese Ao Dai and that the palm-leaf conical hats were copied entirely without any retouch from the traditional Vietnamese farmer’s hat.