I grew up with a very tacky impression of Cheong Sams. Cheong Sams, a staple figure hugging Chinese dress prior to the 60s (as far back as the 17th, brought in by the Manchus), were only regularly seen in the 80's on waitresses in blaring red at Yum Cha restaurants. My grandma has an array of Cheong Sam that were tailored made for her, they always looked gorgeous on her but I never fancied the idea of having a Cheong Sam of my own. Not until I saw the Cantonese movie, In the mood for love (which was a total bore but the cinematic was gorgeous) did I was in awe of the beautiful Cheong Sam. It was flattering and the pattern of the material was endlessly beautiful. Cheong Sam are still wore now in Chinese festivities, such as weddings and in modern interpretations:
Cheong Sams in Lust, Caution:
Of course, Shanghai Tang has always been infamous for their exquisite Cheong Sams which comes with a hefty price tag. Their beautiful interpretation of the Cheong Sams with modern colours and pattern has captured the attention of exclusive clients. (And poor little old me!) I've wandered into a Shanghai Tang in HK before and wished so much that I could have one.
And this version by Vivienne Tam, the Imperial Slash dress is truly breath taking: