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Hong Kong Unrest Also Roils Watch Industry



The Swiss watch industry is bracing for more disappointing news, as pro-democracy demonstrations continue to roil Hong Kong, its No. 1 market.

Exports to the city plunged 26.8 percent in June, when protesters first turned out in large numbers against a proposed law that would have allowed extraditions to mainland China. In July, the most recent numbers available, the decline reduced to a modest 1.3 percent, with total global exports reaching 1.9 billion Swiss francs ($1.92 billion) for the month, an increase of 4.3 percent compared with the prior year.

But there are worries that the August numbers, scheduled to be released Sept. 19, may show further sharp declines as the Hong Kong protests have continued, especially on weekends, as the government has ignored demonstrators’ expanded list of demands (the extradition law was withdrawn Sept. 4) and violence has increased. As a result, some of the city’s normally vibrant retail areas have been deserted on Saturdays and Sundays, and tourism, a big driver for watch sales, was down 5 percent in July.

“If you consider that Hong Kong is about 11 percent of the turnover of Swatch Group and Richemont, this is a pretty scary situation,” said Alexander Linz, a Vienna-based watch journalist who runs the YouTube channel for

Both Compagnie Financière Richemont, which owns several luxury watchmakers including Cartier, Panerai and IWC, and Swatch Group, whose prestige brands include Omega, Breguet and Blancpain, released statements acknowledging the turmoil in Hong Kong had caused local sales to decline — in Swatch’s case, by double digits — while emphasizing growth in mainland China. Swiss watch exports to that market increased 16.3 percent in July, according to the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry.

“When there’s a decrease in Hong Kong, even a small one, it has quite a strong impact on overall growth,” said Jules Boudrand, a director at Deloitte Switzerland and co-author of the 2017 Deloitte Swiss Watch Industry Study.

Over the past five years, exports to Hong Kong have seesawed. The crackdown on luxury gifting spurred by the Chinese government’s anti-corruption campaign, which began in 2012, put a dent in luxury watch sales. Exports fell to 2.4 billion Swiss francs in 2016 from a high of 4.1 billion francs in 2014.

For luxury watchmakers, such as Cartier, the steep decline in sales was exacerbated by a corresponding oversupply of merchandise. In 2015, the glut of inventory in Hong Kong made its way to the gray market, forcing both Richemont and Swatch Group to embark on costly buyback programs to shore up their brands’ reputations. Mindful of that experience, both groups are now thought to be shipping fewer watches to the city.

“All brands are much more cautious,” said Karine Szegedi, managing partner and head of fashion and luxury at Deloitte Switzerland.

Further complicating the dynamic in Hong Kong is the Chinese government’s growing efforts to ensure that its citizens spend their money at home, including a reduction in the sales tax earlier this year. “There are heavy duties when Chinese consumers buy luxury goods outside the country so there is repatriation of luxury purchases to the mainland,” Ms. Szegedi said.

For all the uncertainty about what will happen next in Hong Kong, the United States, the No. 2 market for Swiss watches, is coasting along with 6.1 percent growth in July.

The two markets have a history of leapfrogging each other for the top spot on Switzerland’s watch exports list.

“When one was down, the other one generally was up,” said Joe Thompson, editor-at-large at the watch site Hodinkee. “Then they would flip. And that was good for the industry. When you’re Switzerland, you’re just looking for the hot spot.”

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Who Is Charli D’Amelio? – TikTok’s Charli D’Amelio Age, Facts, Sister



Who is this Charli D’Amelio character, you ask? Well, she’s the reason you find yourself holed up in your room for three hours learning 30-second dances so you can post them on TikTok. A favorite among Gen Zers (and beyond), she became famous—nearly overnight—for her choreography and enviable dance skills. And no, she herself doesn’t have a clue how it happened. Hell, her bio on TikTok says it best: “don’t worry i don’t get the hype either.” Gives us lil plebs some hope! But there’s a lot more to her than you might realize after scrolling way, waaaay back (yeah, she posts a lot) on her social media accounts, so here we’ve gathered all the deets you need to know about America’s TikTok sweetheart.


Charli was born on May 1, 2004, in Norwalk, Connecticut. Her birth date tells us she’s a Taurus. ♉️


Since then, she’s gained over 19 million users on the platform thanks to her dancing. Her first video to go viral was this TikTok duet with @move_with_joy.


Their parents also signed with United Talent Agency (UTA) to work on launching digital content, live touring, podcasts, books, and more.


In November 2019, she danced on stage during Bebe Rexha’s and The Jonas Brothers’ performances in New York as part of their Happiness Begins tour.


iHeartRadio's Z100 Jingle Ball 2019 - Arrivals

Jim Spellman

I mean, it’s actually so hard to believe that there’s even an age difference!!!


Lil Huddy, also known as Chase Hudson, is also a TikTok star. While they haven’t confirmed their relationship, a video of them kissing on New Year’s Eve leaked and fans went wild.


Charli said in an interview that her classmates record her walking to class and share it with one another in private Snapchat stories and group chats.


While the Hype House is a mansion built for collabs in Los Angeles, the Hype House collective is a group made up of 19 TikTokers and YouTube stars.


When fans were upset that she charged $100 for a ticket to the event, she made a video to explain that all proceeds after the cost for security guards went to charity.


She said in an interview with MEL magazine, “I wish I could give everyone an explanation as to what happened, but I have no idea.”


Right now, she’s just pursuing internet fame, but dancing is her passion. She’s been doing it competitively since she was five.

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Tod’s: A vey plush debut by Walter Chiapponi



​Fashion, addicted to permanent change, likes few things more than a debut — and it witnessed an impressive one Friday morning in Milan at Tod’s.

Tod’s – Fall/Winter 2020 – Milan – Photo: Instagram @tods

With poise and a dash of aristocratic nonchalance, the brand’s new designer Walter Chiapponi presented his first women’s collection for Tod’s. And seconds after model Mariacarla Boscono made the final exit from the catwalk, the decision was rendered. Walter is a hit.
Too often before, Tod’s designers have served up stiff uptight clothes dominated with overwrought leather looks. Not Chiapponi, who concentrated on creating a highly plausible selection of understandable clothes. 

His opening look made his intentions clear – a classy lady with somewhat messy hair, who looked like she had crawled out of bed and thrown on the best pieces from her daddy’s wardrobe – a blue artist’s smock under a classical beige blazer worn with Pacific-blue corduroy pants that were way too long. On her feet, not Tod’s moccasins, but Stan Smith-style white sneakers. 
In fact, practically every pair of pants were a couple of inches too long, adding to the sense of insouciance. Often paired with a great series of top coats; again many rather mannish, and made of dry wools. And often pinched from the wardrobe of the gals’ father, or even granddad – like the marvelous matelassé coat on Kaia Gerber, nipped at the waist with a thin white belt. 
Chiapponi is naturally gifted tailor, whose sense of proportion is innately flattering. So when he played with proportions it all worked. Like the excellent sky blue leather apron dress paired with a dark oversized nylon flight jacket with billowing sleeves. 

Tod’s – Fall/Winter 2020 – Milan – Photo: Instagram @tods

Plus, there was an element of the Anglo Saxon intellectual in Tuscany that also resonated – with some great speckled tweed suits and checked jumpsuits. Savile Row on the Arno. Even the one male model in the show was an Englishman. The at-ease styling was by another Briton, Katie Grand, adding the ideal dose of detachment. 
“I wanted to make a complete wardrobe, staring with lifestyle pieces – trench-coats, pea-coats and biker jackets. I don’t like anything too overdesigned. And I wanted an aristocratic look to the models but with an edge,” explained Chiapponi.
The plush mood was emphasized by the seating – a series on soft velvet benches and a carpeted runway. Even the logo was revamped in a large alcove, with a huge golden ‘T’ backlit and placed on a red velvet wall.
Chiapponi’s finale did indeed feature leather – most notably Boscono’s edgy patchwork leather coat, made from recycled scrap shoe leather from the factory.  A nod to sustainability and a neat way of finishing an accomplished debut collection. Expect to hear lots more about Chiapponi. He would appear to have plenty of staying power.

Copyright © 2020 All rights reserved.

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Kate & Oliver Hudson Recall The Time Tom Cruise Scaled Their Parents’ Fence To Crash A Party!



If you ever invite Tom Cruise to a party, don’t expect him to use the front door!

During an appearance on Thursday’s The Ellen DeGeneres Show, siblings Kate and Oliver Hudson reminisced about throwing parties at their parents’ house when they were teens, and revealed how an unexpected guest once entered in style by literally back-flipping his way onto their property.

Kate set the scene by explaining that, as the more responsible sibling, she would serve as the bouncer at these events held at Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell’s abode when they weren’t home to make sure no party crashers set foot inside.

Video: Justin Bieber Talks About Why He Challenged Tom To A Brawl!

She remembered:

“I just always wanted to make sure everything worked out OK… I’m standing at the door making sure people who aren’t supposed to be at the party aren’t coming in… There’s like 400 people in my parents’ house, and I’m kind of freaking out a bit. The control freak in me is like, ‘This is not OK.’”

Then, things got really not OK when the Almost Famous actress saw someone “literally scaling” the gate in front of the property — only to realize it was the world’s favorite action hero.

She recalled:

“I see someone scaling, literally scaling, an eight-foot gate at my parents’ house. I’m literally freaking out. They come off and do a back handspring thing. I’m about to yell at this guy, and it’s Tom Cruise! And I was like, ‘Oh, I didn’t realize you were coming to our party.’ He was like, ‘I heard there was a party.’ And I’m like, ‘Yeah, Tom, come on in!’”

Wow, talk about making an entrance!

Kate went on to applaud the 57-year-old for his real-life nimbleness, adding:

“He is Mission: Impossible! It was wild.”

Sure sounds like it!

Ch-ch-check out the clip (below) for the full story!

While Kate’s life is relatively tame these days, she’s still open to a different kind of wildness: having more kids!

Elsewhere in the interview, the mother-of-three said she hasn’t written off the idea of expanding her family with boyfriend Danny Fujikawa, admitting:

“I don’t know if I’m done [having kids]. I’m in that place of like, right now, [16-month-old daughter] Rani is at that age where you’re like, ‘I want another baby.’ But once she gets like 4 or 5, you’re like, ‘I feel like my life is kinda back a little bit [and] they’re kinda in a groove. It’s weird… it’s like a window.”

Well, you know what they say: when one window closes, check to make sure it wasn’t Tom Cruise breaking into your house.

[Image via ellentube/WENN]


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