From who walked to what they wore, here’s everything you need to know
There have been a lot of controversies swirling around The Victoria Secret Fashion Show held in Shanghai mid several last-minute changes, including cutting headline performer Katy Perry just days before the event. Perry was set to perform the show, but was suddenly banned indefinitely from the Asian nation after Chinese officials discovered the singer had worn a bright, glittery dress with sunflowers on it in 2015 in Taiwan. The “I Kissed A Girl” Singer is now replaced with Harry Styles.
Anti-China protesters had adopted the sunflower as their symbol the year before, so her outfit was offensive to the communist country.
Additionally, four of the lingerie giant’s supermodels were denied entry into China just ahead of the show.
Julia Belyakova, Kate Grigorieva and Irina Sharipova from Russia, in addition to Dasha Khlystun from Ukraine, reportedly cannot enter the country due to visa issues,
What’s more, model Adriana Lima’s visa is allegedly held up due to a “diplomatic problem”.
Nods were expressed by the media who saw the cultural appropriation at The Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show 2017 held on the 20th of November 2017, which involved ripping off Native-inspired regalia and accessories and calling it “Nomadic Adventure,” expressing the behemoth lingerie brand has a lot more learning to do.
The Victoria’s Secret press room describes the “Nomadic Adventure” section as inspired by indigenous African cultures. By using prints, silhouettes, and beading techniques, the brand wanted the opportunity to showcase the “beautiful, bold colors and tribal designs that incorporate animal prints distinctive of Africa’s wildlife.”
Amongst the negative talk taking a bad spill on the runway may be a model’s worst nightmare and it’s only amplified when it might be broadcast to millions on TV.
Chinese model Ming Xi found herself in that scenario last week when she slipped and fell during the event.
All said and done there’s always a silver lining through the dark clouds shining and The Victoria Secret Fashion Show carried on its show with its glittering angels. The Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show was held at the Mercedes Benz Arena in Shanghai. The brand has been steadily building its presence in mainland China over the past few years, with a total of 26 stores there, so it makes commercial sense to hold the catwalk extravaganza there.
The performer lineup included four talented artists who provided an explosive musical backdrop for this year’s world-renowned event. International music superstar Harry Styles, Grammy Award-winning artist Miguel, Tony Award-winning Broadway star Leslie Odom, Jr., and Chinese music sensation Jane Zhang performed at the critically-acclaimed event.
Every year, the Victoria’s Secret show brings its famous bejewelled Angels together for what is consistently a glittery catwalk extravaganza. It’s the most-watched fashion event of the year (800 million tune in annually) with around $12 million (about £9.2 million) spent on putting the spectacle together – a huge figure considering most runway shows cost an estimated $1million (about £700,000). VS pillars Adriana Lima, Alessandra Ambrosio and Lily Aldridge starred in the show, as well as new mom Candice Swanepoel, who is making her return after giving birth to her son.
Also joining them are Stella Maxwell, Elsa Hosk, Jasmine Tookes, Josephine Skriver, Lais Ribeiro, Martha Hunt, Romee Strijd, Sara Sampaio, Taylor Hill, Sui He, Liu Wen and many more. 55 A-list models walked the runway in 87 outfits. Some 3,000 attendees lined up for hours outside. Those who didn’t luckily get a floor seat, but had to get there early to secure a good seat in the balcony since the seating-arrangement system that was supposed to assign the seats after the guests’ entry went down right before the show, causing some chaos outside the arena.
The tone of this year’s show was pink and blue, with Shanghai’s landmark Oriental Pearl Tower as the background for the catwalk. Guests were invited to pose for Instagram photos on the pink carpet, followed by a cup of juice before they could resume taking selfies with their friends and fellow celebrities.
Balmain Creative Director Olivier Rousteing has been casting the Victoria’s Secret Angels in his runway shows for years, so it was only a matter of time before he collaborated with the brand, a partnership he calls “magic.”
Donning the famous wings to showcase an array of incredible looks. The VS models were flaunting their amazing physiques once again, as the collaboration between the famous lingerie brand and designer Balmain was unveiled.
On every seat was a packet of cards on the six themes of the show and portraits of the models, known as angels. The themes were “Punk Angel,” “Porcelain Angels,” “A Winter’s Tale,” “Millennial Nation,” “Goddesses” and “Nomadic Adventure.” The performers included Harry Styles, Miguel, Leslie Odom Jr. and Chinese pop singer Jane Zhang.
The spirit of the 1980’s Punk scene is well and truly alive in this collection. Leather, lace, metal and tartan were key elements of this trend, reflecting the Punk Revolution and the fun and vibrant, avant-garde fashions of the time.
Victoria’s Secret takes us to the shores of the Mediterranean and the South of France with Porcelain Angel. Design is inspired by blue and white pottery, with hints of gold running through. The vibe is modern and young, with beautiful porcelain prints, delicate tiles and no embroidery.
A Winter’s Tale
A gorgeous snowy fairytale plays out in this collection. The playful trend borrows from Finland’s Lapland, with felts and rich embroidery. A white wonderland theme with huge pops of colour make this collection a delight this Christmas.
Street wear meets lingerie in this collection. A fresh and fun take on youth culture and modern fashion, with lots of colour!
This ethereal trends drapes transparent and diaphanous fabrics beautifully across the body, creating a slow and sensual movement. Pale colours and delicate gold embroidery create a silky and sexy effect.
This collection features beading techniques inspired by indigenous African Cultures. Bold colours and tribal designs also incorporate animal prints, for a rich and elegant take on Africa’s wildlife.
Candice Swanepoel opened the show in the Punk Angel outfit, only a year after she gave birth to her first child. This is the 29-year-old South African model’s 10th appearance in Victoria’s Secret’s runway show. All the outfits in the Punk Angel segment were leather, with rivets, pins and zippers. It featured the brand’s first collaboration with a luxury brand, the limited-edition capsule collection VS x BALMAIN. Later in this segment models Lily Aldridge and Alessandra Ambrosio walking in matching punk outfits with tassels and over-the-knee high-heeled boots. Aldridge closed the Porcelain Angel segment in a black lingerie set with a fluttering fairy-blue-and-white robe. The Winter’s Tale segment welcomed Karlie Kloss in her matching silver blonde hair, white veil and flowery wings, followed by one of the show’s biggest dramas: Ming Xi’s tumble.
The Shanghainese angel tripped on her floor-length gauze and fell on her knees when she almost had arrived at the fixed point right in front of the cameras. It took Xi some time to stand up as her wing seemed to fall on her head, but she maintained a big smile throughout, with the audience giving her loud applause. The next angel, Gizele Oliveira, held Xi’s hand to the fixed point. On her way back to the backstage, Xi was interacting with her front-row Chinese celebrity friends, making fun of her mistake.
The annual Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show is an extravagant parade of beautiful models, lingerie, and musicians. But perhaps the most mesmerizing element of the televised event is the announcement of the Victoria’s Secret Fantasy Bra each year.
Every year, one Victoria’s Secret model is chosen to wear the Fantasy Bra. VS model Lais Ribeiro had one of the best looks of the night in the Champagne Nights Fantasy Bra. Later, during the Goddess segment, Harry Styles returned to perform “Only Angel” while the shiny Fantasy Bra of the year was displayed by Lais Ribeiro, along with a pair of stylish golden wings and high-heeled Roman sandals. The bra weighed more than 600 carats. This year’s blinged-out bra is designed exclusively for Victoria’s Secret by jeweller Mouawad and is hand set with diamonds, yellow sapphires and blue topaz in 18 karat gold on a custom Victoria’s Secret Dream Angels Demi Bra. The ornate design took almost 350 hours to create and is embellished with nearly 6,000 precious gemstones.
The show closed with the multicultural “Nomadic Adventure” section, followed by a flurry of confetti. The angel crew, led by Adriana Lima and Alessandra Ambrosio, returned to the stage clapping hands with each other.
Seven hours before the show, backstage was crowded with journalists and bloggers. Models were in light pink, flower-embroidered pajamas, having their hair and makeup done while saying hi to the cameras. Some popular Chinese fashion bloggers were spotted live-streaming the backstage scene to their followers.