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silk Market launching 120 'boutiques'

Photo: Wang Zi
People who often shop at the Silk Market will find that many of their favorite former stalls have disappeared. This's because the market has established 120 boutiques ostensibly catering to the CBD's office ladies, according to the market's operations manager, Xie Yuqiang.

Xie told Lifestyle that they invested about 10 million yuan to rebuild nearly 400 booths this month, amounting to one-third of the total stalls in the Silk Market. "We drove out the vendors selling fake and shabby goods to make way for these boutiques," Xie told Lifestyle. "The newly built 120 booths will emphasize products with national characteristics, such as tea [the market even has its own brand] and made-to-order clothes, as well as glasses, bags and carpets." The boutiques are scattered from the first floor to the third floor and opened Monday of last week.

Zhang Guoxing, a designer at tailor shop Xin Xiu on the third floor, was a cheerleader for the change. "I think it is good for me that they drove out those vendors selling poor quality fake goods. They affected normal businesses since they were selling fake clothes or other imitation goods, but now, after the reconstruction, those people were driven out. People like to wear clothes that other people don't have so they can be unique. Also, to some extent, the clothes we make here have distinctive national features, which is welcomed by both Chinese and foreigners."

"I would like to give it a try," was the answer of one 26-year-old woman named Shi Yuehua, who works as a sales assistant in the CBD area, when asked whether she'd give these boutiques a whirl. "I often go shopping in the Xidan area to buy cheap but good-quality clothes on weekends, but I'd like to go to the Silk Market after work since it's near my business. Sometimes the goods here are better than in Xidan."

For many, however, the fakes are part of the market's appeal. "Why not buy fake things?" Qian Hui, a 20-year-old college student told Lifestyle, adding that she wasn't happy with this market's latest development. "Although I know they are fake brand clothes, it doesn't mean they are low quality. It's quite the other way: they are cheap and durable. I don't have so much money to buy so-called big brands, and the design of fake clothes is not so bad. Sometimes they're very fashionable, so why not buy them?" Not to worry, though – Lifestyle doubts we've seen the last of fakery at Silk

By Wang Shutong
Source: Global Times

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