met-gala-2015-zhang-ziyi-carolina-herrera

The Way Zhang Ziyi Epitomizes Elegance

Famous Chinese actress Zhang Ziyi took everyone’s breath away at this year’s Met Gala, also known as Met Ball, which is an annual fundraising gala for the benefit of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute in New York City.

Zhang Ziyi in a Carolina Herrera gown with Mandarin collar at Met Gala
Zhang Ziyi in a Carolina Herrera gown with Mandarin collar at Met Gala

The Carolina Herrera gown she was wearing combined the ballgown silhouette with the Mandarin collar seamlessly while the Cindy Chow ruby pins glistened gloriously on the ethereal white dress. This is a perfect example of East-meets-West fashion design.

If you love this Asian-influenced ballgown but don’t go to any formal galas, here is an East-meets-West white silk coat you can wear with semi-formal dresses.

Silk brocade overcoat A-line with stand-up Mandarin collar
Silk brocade overcoat A-line with stand-up Mandarin collar

Although the weather is getting warmer, this thin coat may work for a cool night in late spring or summer. The classy cut will never go out of style, so you can get it now and wait until fall to wear it, too.

Now, let’s see how Zhang Ziyi pulled off some less formal Mandarin dresses.

Zhang Ziyi in a green floral Mandarin dress - still from
Zhang Ziyi in a green floral Mandarin dress – still from “Jasmine Women”

The combination of sky blue and celery green looks cooling, definitely ideal for late spring and summer. The dress shown below offers not only this color combination but also a pretty print of lotus flowers, making it even more summery.

Floral Mandarin dress with lotus blossom
Floral Mandarin dress with lotus blossom

If you prefer a comfortable and hip-friendly A line for your summer dress, here’s a casual-looking choice.

A-line Mandarin dress
A-line Mandarin dress

No matter how warm the weather gets, black is still a suitable color for evening wear, especially given its slimming effect. However, all black may look a little monotonous, why not follow Zhang Zi-Yi’s example by selecting a black dress with a red floral print?

Zhang Ziyi in a black and red floral Mandarin dress - movie still from
Zhang Ziyi in a black and red floral Mandarin dress – movie still from “2046”
Traditional Black Cheongsam With Red Floral Print
Traditional Black Cheongsam With Red Floral Print

In case you don’t like floral patterns, just having red frog buttons and trims on your black dress can spice it up.

Black linen Mandarin dress with red trim
Black linen Mandarin dress with red trim

When it comes to mixing colors, vertical stripes can optically lengthen the body. Perhaps you can’t tell how vertical stripes elongate Zhang Ziyi from the photo below because it’s not a full-length shot, but you must agree that she looks fantastic in the stripes.

Zhang Ziyi in a Mandarin dress - movie still from
Zhang Ziyi in a Mandarin dress – movie still from “Mei Lanfang”

Here are two great designs of vertical stripes.

Stripe pattern khaki qipao
Stripe pattern khaki qipao
Vintage style stripe pattern Mandarin dress
Stripe pattern Mandarin dress

If you are of Asian descent, no matter where you were born, Zhang Ziyi can be your role model in fashion because she has a typical Asian girl’s body. She stands between 5’3” and 5’4”, about the average height of Asian girls. She has a very thin body, which is normally seen in Asian girls, too. Dresses that appear fabulous on her should look pretty good on most Asian girls on the skinny side. Why not learn from her impeccable ways of styling?

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