An Everlasting Elegance
The founder of the first Nouveau Chinese Style designer brand.
ELEGENTE is the world’s leading source of original Chinese designer brands, we bring the most demanding, tasteful consumers and Chinese culture lovers in the world a unique Chinese fashion experience, blending elegance, creativity and craftsmanship.
Being the creator and leader of the “Nouveau Chinese Style”, the selection at ELEGENTE is artistic yet pragmatic, we wish to share our passion for traditional Chinese culture with our customers. We strive to release our customers’ individuality and personality with inspiration from the energy and innovation of the Chinese fashion and style.
Brand Story – Narrated by ELEGENTE founder Zenn Ang
It all started with a beautiful encounter in the 1930’s…
Eight years ago, my grandfather passed away, I was there to help going through his belongings and an old photo of a cheongsam-clad white lady and an old-fashioned cheongsam dress wrapped in a piece of faded floral fabric aroused my curiosity.
I asked my grandmother who the lady was. She paused for a while, as if summoning up memories, then she recalled that, nearly 70 years before, a young lady from America encountered a young tailor in a cheongsam shop near the Shanghai Bund. They soon fell in love with each other, but the differences in their social status, public opinion and their parents’ beliefs created an unbridgeable gap.
The young lady left Shanghai without saying goodbye. Her sudden disappearance caused the tailor great suffering. One year later, he followed her footsteps to America only to discover that the young lady had already become a wife and a novelist. He chose not to present himself, instead he headed back to Shanghai, and wishing her only the best. Living with his agony, the young tailor decided to open up his own cheongsam store.
Working in the cheongsam store, the young tailor had many chances to meet young ladies, and to start a new relationship. But he didn’t and even turned down, blind dates arranged by well-meaning family and friends. It was not until 7 years later, that tailor got married and started a family of his own. Nanny took a deep breath and continued, and that young tailor was your grandpa.
A cultural treasure worth the price of life
I was shocked, I have always known my grandfather as a culture enthusiast and a retired Chinese teacher, but how could he possibly be a cheongsam tailor? And what’s about the waiting? Could it be that he was waiting for a closure?
As I held the yellowish photo and the cheongsam dress in my hand, I tried to imagine how they survived. Over the past half century, China has gone through many changes, especially during the 10-year Chinese cultural revolution (1966 – 1976). Everything related to traditional Chinese culture including cheongsam dresses were strictly prohibited, and were massively burned or ruined. Teachers, traditional Chinese physicians, cheongsam tailors, artists etc., were publicly humiliated. Grandpa’s cheongsam store must have been forced to shut down by then, and saving the cheongsam dress in private might have cost him his life.
Being a culture lover myself, and a fashion designer, I suddenly realised that my passion for traditional Chinese culture might have been inherited from my grandfather. Traditional culture has always been a source of inspiration for my work. I am now even more proud of my grandfather. I have this strong feeling that I have the obligation to preserve the traditional Chinese culture, and to help more people to understand, and to be able to appreciate the beauty of it.
At the end of 2010, I started to gather a group of culture lovers and professional fashion buyers. We spent almost a year and a half locating cheongsam tailors, original Chinese fashion designers, and fashion brands with Chinese elements. With their support, the online Chinese clothing store that is named after my grandfather’s cheongsam store 「雅致旗袍铺」(Elegance Cheongsam Shop) elegente.com was able to launch in September 2012.
No.1 custom tailored cheongsam qipao brand.
Elegente is the #1 online tailor for custom made cheongsam and for high-end Mandarin Chinese clothing such as qipao cheongsam, Chinese dresses, Mandarin jackets and deluxe accessories.
Explore our comprehensive designs and patterns of Chinese clothing including short cheongsam, traditional qipao, classic cheongsam, fashion cheongsam, sleeveless qipao, cap sleeve cheongsam, long gowns & Chinese wedding dresses for any occasions. for example, daily wear, formal wear, wedding attire or Chinese New Year celebrations.
For casual wear, browse our range of modern cheognsam, sexy cheongsam, designer gowns and silk cheongsam. For a formal party, check out our Chinese costumes, cheongsam gowns, silk qipao & evening gowns. Discover time-honored mandarin dress brands such as RedShop, Tri-color, Boudoir, AnnularRings and Yue or browse thousands of cheongsam by colours such as purple, blue, black, white, red & green to name a few. We also tailor make a range of mandarin dresses for Chinese style weddings like wedding cheongsam, Chinese kimono & designer wedding dresses. The great strength of Elegente is allowing you to custom tailor a dress for your own measurements & preferences that fit your body and soul at an affordable price within 15 days and with free int’l shipping, Get measured online only takes 10 min. Choose, customise, and it just fits!