Master Fung Yau Choi, 74-year-old master, is a highly respected Shanghai tailor who excelled in the art of traditional dressmaker for the cheongsam.
Born in Shanghai and moved to Hong Kong at 12 years old, Master Fung has witnessed the golden age of the cheongsam in the 1950’s where at least 20 tailor shops were available in Causeway Bay alone, and a master had to make up to 3 gowns/dresses a day.
“Back then, cheongsam was for everyone, from distinguished ladies and madams to backing dancers at nightclubs,” says Master Fung, referring to a traditional Chinese dress style known for its feminine body-hugging features.
Handmade and delicate, Shanghai-style cheongsam was once widely celebrated in Hong Kong, because it differed from dresses produced on sewing machines. However, it is also time-consuming to make and requires outstanding craftsmanship. With many detailed steps, one has to receive at least 6 years of apprenticeship before he can independently make a cheongsam.
Cheongsam or qipao has seen a revival of public interest lately. Master Fung was invited by THE SPARKLE COLLECTION by German Pool to complete a special edition qipao in the “Bauhinia Series”.