Designer Claire Barker Expands into Asian Fashion Capital

4 November 2010, 9:58AM

After making her mark on the local fashion scene, New Zealand designer Claire Barker is expanding her brand internationally, opening a new store in Asia’s fashion capital Shanghai.

With a number of successful collections and showcases under her belt, including a recent appearance at 2010 New Zealand Fashion Week, Barker is looking to establish her label in the city widely referred to as the “Paris of the East”.

The new Claire Barker store is located on the 5th floor of the Isetan Department Store in the HuangPu District of Shanghai.

The department store is home to a number of other top international brands including Burberry, Givenchy and Calvin Klein and is regarded as the premium fashion retail centre in the city.

Barker says that she is excited to showcase her designs outside New Zealand and take her label to the next level.

“I’ve enjoyed some great success with my store in Auckland and collections over the past few years but have been looking for another challenge,” she says.

Originally from China before immigrating to New Zealand as a student, Barker says opening a store in Shanghai was the logical next move for her growing brand.

“My family still lives in China and I source most of the fabrics for my garments from cities throughout the country. Over the past few years Shanghai has also steadily risen into the ranks as a fashion capital with the city hosting its eighth successive Fashion Week this year. There seemed like no better time and place for me to expand internationally.”

The store’s grand opening was attended by the New Zealand Consul-General in Shanghai, Michael Swain, who delivered the opening welcome speech to guests, and the Chairman of the Kea China Advisory Board, Sharon Fraser.

“It was fantastic to have both of these influential New Zealanders show their support - it made the event even more special,” says Barker.

The store will exclusively sell the Claire Barker collections and will be supplied directly from the designer’s workshop in Shanghai.

Those wanting to get a taste of Claire Barker’s unique style closer to home can visit her store ‘Claire Barker’, located on O’Connell St in Auckland or online at