Taobao, China's largest social commerce platform, has a treasure trove of products for sale and has become a go-to online shopping platform for many Singaporeans looking for affordable buys.
Taobao has everything from fashion pieces to household appliances and even quirky items like hanfu costumes for cats made by budding designers. Chunfeng Daxiaoqiao whose founder Wu Qiuqiao is the brains behind the cute Hanfu-inspired outfits for cats and is showcasing more of her creations at the annual Taobao Maker Festival (TMF).
The TMF started in 2016 but is taking on a fresh approach this year by combining a virtual exhibition together with a merchant road trip.
Read on to find out more!
First-ever TMF road show
Focusing on the positive impact of "New Blood", Taobao has launched its online exhibition supported by Taobao Life, a 3D avatar-based virtual world. This allows Taobao users to visit a six-themed online pavilion using their own unique avatar, collect TMF-related virtual clothes and props to enhance
their avatar and Taobao Life space, and to interact with the virtual figures of celebrities that represent the six pavilions!
This is also the first year TMF visitors do not need to head to the carnival. Instead, the merchants are out and about meeting TMF fans while on a road trip to four cities in China: Hangzhou, Chengdu, Xi'an and Wuhan.
A large truck converted into mobile storefronts allow dozens of merchants to display their products in each city and interact with the local community.
3 merchants to look out for
The TMF is aimed at celebrating youths' creativity and empowering them all over the world. These are the merchants who have wowed us with their innovations and you should definitely check them out too.
Specialising in costumes for cats, the founder Wu Qiuqiao draws inspiration from design elements of Japanese kimonos and Han-style clothing to create pretty and cute clothes for cats. Her unique creations have garnered buyers from all over the world who are also owners of cats or cat lovers, making her the well-deserved winner of the Innovation Award at the 2020 Taobao Jiyoujia Merchant Conference.
As a cat lover who enjoys dressing up her own cats, the thought of making Hanfu for pets came to her naturally. Qiuqiao describes Taobao as the ideal platform for the upcoming generation of entrepreneurs and is encouraging more young talents to turn their hobbies into careers. She is showcasing a set of cat Hanfu inspired by the four great beauties of ancient China at the TMF!
You can expect to find intricately designed outfits in Chinese or Japanese style and the best part is that these outfits are all extremely affordable! Prices range from 50.88 to 82.80 CNY (~10 to 16 SGD) and the outfits are available in sizes from S to XXXL.
Although these outfits are made for cats, who is to say you can't dress your dogs in these ultra adorable costumes as well, right?
The name "Tinyl" is derived from the shop's first ever product, the Tiny-Vinyl, which is the world's smallest vinyl record player! How cool is that?
The founder of Tinyl Shop, Joker, hopes to address the price issues of conventional vinyl record players and records. He aims to promote the vinyl culture in China with his mini vinyl record players in the form of trendy toys and by working with music rights holders including independent music artists to introduce three-inch vinyl records.
Tinyl Shop is showcasing its signature mini vinyl record player at the TMF.
These mini vinyl record players are great as decorations to achieve an aesthetic house or bedroom but you can also use it to play music as Tinyl Shop also sells three-inch vinyl records specifically made for these players.
Joker's aspirations of hoping that physical music players will help revive physical music media at a time when technology has made it so effortless for people to access music is truly admirable!
BANU, short for "Branding A New Universe", implies the brand's vision of shaping the future. Founded in 2016, BANU is a fashion sneaker brand which has collaborated with other well-known brands such as Nike and has a growing follower base that includes celebrities!
With research and development centers in Milan, Florence, Guangzhou and Chengdu, BANU aspires to develop more shoe models that blend superb craftsmanship with fashion and youth culture.
At the TMF, BANU has introduced a limited edition sneaker collection that celebrates the city of Wuhan, the hometown of BANU's founder. The brand hopes to pay tribute to the heroic city for its citizens' fight against COVID-19.
Most of BANU's sneakers take on a chunky design so it's safe to say the dad sneakers trend isn't going to die down anytime soon. With a wide range of colours and designs to choose from, these hypebeast or hypebae-looking sneakers are going to fit right into your arsenal of streetwear.
TMF's exciting debut in Singapore
Another first for TMF this year is that it has made its debut on our sunny little island!
In partnership with *SCAPE Singapore and the National Youth Council till 14 August 2020, the Singapore extension of the festival features two collaborations to highlight local Singaporean youths in their element as innovators. These collaborations are viewable via the Taobao app as well as various Taobao's media channels.
One of the collaborations involves a smart Skateboard Showcase where a national skateboarder is invited to do a short film demonstrating how to artfully navigate a patented smart Skateboard from Taobao at *SCAPE's very own skateboard park.
The second collaboration piece aims to spotlight the blending of Chinese traditional culture and Singapore's rich urban culture through the partnership of a Chinese qipao designer Jin Wen Cong and a Singaporean photographer. The two have worked together to conduct a photoshoot of the qipao designs modelled against the backdrop of renowned Singapore landmarks.
Find out more and witness the creations from 10 to 14 August via bit.ly/scapextmf.
This post is brought to you by Taobao.
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Text by: GirlStyle SG