Horse-faced skirt becomes "Year of the Dragon jersey", sold in Caoxian County for 300 million yuan a year

  In recent years, with the popularity of "new Chinese-style" clothing and the fashion circle's attention to traditional culture, horse-faced skirts have gradually become the darling of the fashion industry. Big data from multiple e-commerce platforms shows that since January this year, the number of searches for Hanfu has skyrocketed. Among them, the horse-faced skirt has become the most popular item in the Hanfu category, with sales of many hot-selling items exceeding one million yuan. As one of the production and sales bases of Hanfu in my country, Caoxian County, Shandong Province, sales of Year of the Dragon New Year greeting clothes, mainly horse-faced skirts, have exceeded 300 million yuan in 2023.

  Reporter Zhang Qi and trainee reporter Guo Chenhao

Horse-faced skirt becomes popular

Enterprises are not closed during the Spring Festival

  This Spring Festival of the Year of the Dragon is busy for many horse-faced skirt manufacturers. "I haven't had a break during the New Year." Zhang Mingqiang, general manager of Zhejiang Haining BenQ Fabrics, told reporters that since he studied the new product Song Brocade Horse Face Skirt, customers have been coming to his factory to look at samples since the fourth day of the Lunar New Year.

  "The traditional horse-faced skirt is made from jacquard gold satin, while the new product uses Song brocade." In Zhang Mingqiang's words, the new product is a "subversion" of the horse-faced skirt industry.

  Song brocade is known as one of the three famous brocades in my country, and is known as the "crown of brocade" and "inch-size gold". The new product using Song brocade is slightly better than the traditional horse-faced skirt in terms of production technology and color.

  "The original horse-faced skirts were mainly black and red, but now the spring models are mainly in light colors, and the original light-top and bottom-heavy fabrics have been changed to high-precision and high-density Song brocade fabrics." Zhang Mingqiang said, "The new product Although it has not been officially launched yet, customers have already pre-ordered two to three thousand pieces.”

  The popularity of new products has also brought about some problems. Production capacity cannot keep up and there are not enough personnel, which have become Zhang Mingqiang's "new worries". Expanding production capacity has become his top priority after the Spring Festival. "We are actively purchasing equipment and recruiting employees," Zhang Mingqiang said, striving to triple production capacity in the shortest possible time to meet order demand.

  "Sales have not stopped during the Spring Festival this year." Luo Ruyan's original Hanfu company in Caoxian County, Shandong, which mainly sells through e-commerce, has experienced a peak in offline sales during the Spring Festival.

  The company founder Li Zilei told reporters that the Spring Festival holiday was originally planned and online sales were suspended. Unexpectedly, consumers came to the store to buy horse-faced skirts in an endless stream every day. “We arranged for some workers to take turns to be on duty, and after the Spring Festival holiday, , the average daily sales volume is about 400 pieces.”

  Such sales, in Li Zilei's opinion, are very impressive.

Take back the "right to speak"

The rise of domestic horse-faced skirts

  When did horse-faced skirts become popular again? In Zhang Mingqiang's view, this has to mention the "Dior incident" in 2022.

  In July 2022, the internationally renowned fashion brand Dior released a mid-length skirt priced at 29,000 yuan. Some Chinese netizens discovered that this skirt is almost identical to the traditional Chinese dress "Horse Face Skirt", but it is called a "new" fashion item "using the iconic Dior silhouette". This incident quickly caused a stir. discussion.

  Traditional culture must be in our own hands. Subsequently, the domestic horse-faced skirt camp quickly emerged and the market was revitalized.

  After seeing new business opportunities, Zhang Mingqiang and his wife, who have eight years of experience in clothing business, decided to give it a try. They dedicated some of their resources to the production of horse-faced skirts.

  Zhang Mingqiang's company, Haining BenQ Fabric, is located in Xucun, a famous home textile town in China. It mainly produces textiles such as curtains and wall coverings. It has a certain technological foundation in making horse-faced skirts.

  "We applied for the trademark in early 2023 and officially put it into production in July." Zhang Mingqiang said that the popularity of horse-faced skirts is like waves. During holidays or peak tourist seasons, the sales of horse-faced skirts will increase accordingly. "We as a company The supply chain of finished products is mainly wholesale, mainly sold to cities such as Hangzhou, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, and Chengdu.”

  Before the Spring Festival, Zhang Mingqiang's company's total sales of horse-faced skirts had reached hundreds of thousands. The production share of horse-faced skirts has accounted for more than half of his company's layout.

  For Li Zilei of Caoxian County, 2023 is also a bumper year.

  Li Zilei initially engaged in live broadcast sales, helping merchants sell Hanfu. After encountering frequent supply shortages, he decided to produce his own. There are many styles of Hanfu. When he saw that the horse-faced skirt was more replicable and operable, Li Zilei was moved.

  "It will be officially put into production in early 2023, with an average daily sales of more than 2,000 pieces." Li Zilei said that daily sales are mainly e-commerce live broadcast supply, offline experience hall wholesale and retail, of which e-commerce sales account for a large proportion.

  Today in Caoxian County, the production of horse-faced skirts is in short supply. It is understood that in 2023, the sales volume of Caoxian County’s Year of the Dragon New Year greeting clothes, mainly horse-faced skirts, has exceeded 300 million yuan.

  In addition, horse-faced skirts are also gradually going overseas. Li Zilei told reporters that customers from Germany, Japan, Russia and other countries have come to inquire. The good development trend makes many manufacturers optimistic about the horse skirt market. In Zhang Mingqiang’s view, in the next three to five years, horse-faced skirts will become more and more popular and the market will become more active.

Horse-faced skirts are popular

Promote the development of related industries

  As one of the main skirt styles for Han women in ancient China, the horse-faced skirt continues to this day and is favored by Hanfu enthusiasts.

  Why do more and more people fall in love with horse-faced skirts? What changes have been brought about by cultural exchange? The reporter consulted Wen Shaohua, a postdoctoral fellow at the Palace Museum.

  "The horse-faced skirt is the most typical skirt style worn by women in the Ming and Qing Dynasties. It consists of skirt gates (horse-faced), pleats, skirt waist, skirt ruffles and other elements." Wen Shaohua introduced that the development of the horse-faced skirt has gone through a long process. Process, which originated in the Song Dynasty and became popular in the Ming and Qing Dynasties, is a material civilization that combines traditional culture with contemporary values.

  The horse-faced skirt highlights the connotation of traditional Chinese culture. The traditional Chinese flat cutting method, the full utilization of fabrics, and the simplicity of the production process all demonstrate the ancient Chinese creation wisdom of "saving things", "treasuring use" and "prudent skills"; broad, symmetrical, impartial, and even. The straight structure embodies the ancients' pursuit of being in the world; and the combination of horse face and pleats demonstrates the oriental beauty of "combination of movement and stillness, and degree of relaxation."

  Spanning thousands of years, horse-faced skirts are still popular today and have become an important carrier of traditional culture. "Especially after the Dior incident, it has aroused the Chinese people's love for traditional Chinese clothing and the protection of China's excellent traditional culture." Wen Shaohua said.

  The popularity of horse-faced skirts has also led to the development of related industries. From fabric suppliers to designers, manufacturers, and sellers, the Hanfu industry chain is booming. At the same time, the popularity of horse-faced skirts has also promoted the development of cultural tourism, intangible inheritance and other fields, and injected new vitality into the protection and inheritance of traditional culture.

  Wen Shaohua believes that the "revival" of the horse-faced skirt also brings some enlightenment. "More attention should be paid to the popularization, inheritance and development of China's excellent traditional culture. How to rejuvenate China's excellent traditional culture is an urgent problem that needs to be solved."