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HONG KONG | Suitable only for savvy fashionistas, Roo Market has a quest of its own: proving that Kong Kong fashion brands deserve the same lot of attention than trendy hubs like Tokyo, Seoul or any European fashion capital. Creative Director Sheila Cheung co-founded Roo Market out of her undying love for retail and fashion. Hong kong has probably some of the best shopping malls in the world. And its buzzing avenues are filled with high-end boutiques delivering to fashion savvy tourists the latest trends from all corners of the globe. Unfortunately, the local fashion designers are still having a hard time in earning a solid international reputation as a new breed of edgy trendsetters. And Roo Market’s goal is to promote Hong Kong fashion designers around the globe. Roo market is Sheila’s little treasure. One can quickly see that by the way she proudly and determinately talks about how she and her partner gave shape to their ambitious project. First it was available only as an online store; a convenient platform to reach international costumers. But recently Roo Market's opened a cosy little shop in the Island’s SoHo area to further her goal of promoting Hong Kong fashion designers among local costumers. It’s a steep road ahead. Sheila confesses most of local costumers prefer international brands. Be it popular stuff from South Korea and Japan or big well-established high-end brands from Europe. However, there are increasingly a bigger number of costumers in Hong Kong who are willing to appreciate boutiques with personality, and who actively look for alternative designs instead of following dictated trends. “Design wise we don't limit to any style. We try to bring things that have great potential. There are things that are very funky. Others are more girly, lady-like. As long as they have a certain personality or potential, I would try to recruit them [the designer] to join us”, Sheila says. Hong Kong fashion designers should do their part too. Each brand that Roo Market carries is an investment and therefore Sheila follows a strict criteria to select them. “Is getting more and more difficult to find new brands that qualify our guidelines. We need brands that know very well what they are doing and who have been loyal to their identity for at least 2-3 years”. According to Sheila, having good designs is not enough. There are many local brands that lack an identity. “Presentation is your personality, If you [the designer] don’t have this, then you are wasting your designs”, she adds. Cecilia Ma, Da-Seing, Hei Lau, Day Dream Nation, Oblivion, Plotz, Twisted Sisters and Taara are some of the fashion designers at Roo Market. PHOTOS BY IRIS MIR - EARTH TO IRIS. Click the images below to enlarge the gallery and enjoy Roo Market in full. Address: Roo Market 16 Elgin St, Central & Western Hong Kong Tel: (+852) 2640 0239 See on Google maps.  

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