Since I arrived I always hear fireworks going off during the weekend day time. Today I think I found out why. Fireworks break out as usual but this time I was sitting by the window. I looked out and saw a white limo pulling up to my apartment complex entrance, and a bride and groom exited the limo heading inside.
I have a wonderful Hong Kong tailor. I was not in a rush to check out the Shanghai custom tailor scene. Finally, the weekend before Chinese New Year I decided to head over to the South Bund Fabric Market (南外滩轻纺面料市场) for the first time. I know it will be less crowded. Many of the stores have closed already for the coming new year.
I was right. A arrived at noon time and the market was not too crowded. The main fabric market has three floors of, totally maybe 100 or more shops. Which one to pick? I looked for one that is:
- neat and organized
- has good reasonable styled clothing on display
- not too flashy
- displaying men's clothing only
- already has a Chinese customer inside
- not have a pushy sales person
- not run by someone too old or too flashy
I found a shop on the second floor. The sales person was friendly but efficient. Once I told her I wanted to try to make a single pair of pants, she helped me picked the materials and style. Turned out she speaks very good English, but we mostly conversed in Chinese. Except I have no idea the Chinese terms are for pleats (褶 Zhe3), button down, etc. I ordered a pair of khakis for 200 CNY and a button down shirt for 130 CNY. Dress pants will be 250 CNY. Prices are obviously very good compare to off the rack in the US, and about half of what it cost in HK tailored. But until I actually get them I would not know the quality.
I went across the street to the smaller market. I bought a cashmere sweater for 560 CNY because I actually needed one. They will tailored one for about 640 CNY. I also found a interesting hand made shoes store ! The lady said her father is the master cobbler and have been doing it since he was six years old. I told her this will be a lost art and hope that her family keeps it up. She said she can do the upper part of the shoe but a girl is not strong enough to do the sole, but she will keep the family business going. A pair of custom leather shoes will cost around 1800 CNY she said. Some day I will try them out.
Stay tune for the second post for updates once I received the cloths.
How to get to the South Bund Fabric Market
The address is:
South Bund Fabric Market
399 Lujiabang Lu
Nán wàitān (South Bund)
qīng fǎng miàn liào (light fabric)
shì chǎng (market)
I maybe biased, but I find this to be a great New Year blog post by my 8 year old guest blogger. She was in Shanghai for a few weeks. She was a bit sick because of the traveling and the bad Air. On New Year Day we are leaving to go to Hong Kong. This is her blog post. I love her positive thinking:
Today is January 1 , 2014 ! In Shanghai of course . But , Happy New Year to anyone who reads this on New Year's Day ! ( your time )
Anyway , I am very excited , because :
- It is New Years Day .
- I woke up today feeling like a new me . Not sick .
I didn't make a New Years resolution . I couldn't think of one . Not saying I'm perfect though .
Last night I thought we would probably hear fireworks but I actually slept through it , so I can't tell you if there was any . I spent most of the day making a fort with my brother . I had a good New Year . Did you ? Or will you ?
My family and I went to go look around Shanghai . My dad was the tour guide . There was a LOT of walking . My legs and ankles got really sore , but it was worth it .
>:-( ----> :-1
First , we went to the Dong Tai road antique market . At the very end of the road we found some cool ( obviously antique ) locks . It costed 250 rmb at first , but my dad bargain it down to 120 - less than half the price . Next , we went to a near by food market . We went to a small food stall . It sold warm drinks and fresh egg balls . ( pastries ) My dad bought a chocolate latte for him and the fresh egg balls for us to share . It was really good !
We started to walk again . My mom called us over to another food stall . This one sold scallion pancakes with different fillings . My mom ordered two . Then we went into a taxi to go to a restraunt , my dad had recommended . When the taxi dropped us off , we had absolutely no idea where we were .
We had to look around . That took a lot of walking , searching , and backtracking . When we finally found the restraunt - for what seemed like a century later - I was very relieved . We ate its specialty , shaolong-bao . It was called Dingtaifong-I think . It was good . We finally went back to our condo by taxi I felt joy seeping into me from every direction . I felt as light as a feather . It was a good good good feeling . I definitely had a very daring day .
My family and I went to the mall for dinner . We had a Tai / Melaysian combanation . It was really good . We ate a delicious grilled platter . It looked beautiful . We ate and ate until our hearts desire . At the restraunt there were a few people dancing and singing . It was a surprise . Something that puzzled me was that they were singing in Spanish even though we were in China.
Tonight , we had mangosteen . It is a type of fruit . You eat them in segments . They weren't bad . I liked their taste . In each segment there is a seed . The fruits in Asia are really good .
We took a walk around the compound . We saw a few landmarks . We enjoyed it . ( Actually we had to walk around the whole compound , because the back gate to get in was locked . Still , it was enjoyable . ) It was a long day and I'm now ready for bed . I have a long , exciting day ahead of me . ;-O <----(yawn)