Han Lee

PUNCTUALITY, EFFICIENCY, TIMING. AND LIFESTYLE FLAIR. 守时,高效,时机。独具匠心的生活品味。

On a little street 3 minutes away from my apartment there is a little shop that has always attracted my attention. First of all the selection of goods on sale – women and menswear but also accessories and lifestyle pieces. Secondly their shop windows, always fun and engaging, with stickers and colourful props. And then the name of the shop – Sanlipop – which I simply love. There is Sanlitun, my favourite neighbourhood in town, and the pop aspect, which I find inspiring as opposed to remote, niche, polished.

从我的公寓出发,步行三分钟有一条小巷子,这儿隐藏着一家小小的店铺。无论是促销的男、女服装,还是配饰、家庭饰物等总是能吸引我的注意。而更惊喜的是店铺的橱窗布置,充满乐趣,引人入胜,用了很多色彩丰富的小贴画、小布置。噢,这家店叫“Sanlipop”, 哈哈,“三里屯pop”是不是很有意思。这里是我在北京最喜欢的地方,绝对不是有些人描述的那般遥远、高冷、傲娇;而是时髦、乐趣、充满灵感。

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But don’t get me wrong – it’s not like there is no research behind the work the 5 founders at Sanlipop do to be up to date and to select the most interesting pieces for their clientele. Quite the opposite. When I met with one of them, Han from NYC with a degree from Parsons, a master degree from London’s Saint Martins and a happy smile on his face, we drank coconut water and discussed about the challenges – so many – and the satisfaction that come together with running one of the most fun and sought-after shops in town.

不过,大家不要误会我的意思哦。为了给顾客提供最满意的单品,Sanlipop的五位创始人没少在背后下苦功,为此我约了Han,请他来聊聊Sanlipop背后的创业故事。Han,Sanlipop创始人之一,来自纽约,毕业于Parsons设计学院,并在伦敦圣马丁设计学院获得硕士学位。我们各自点了一杯椰子水,在若有若无的香气中,Han聊起了创业过程中遇到的无数困难,当然还有成功地经营这样一家有型有款店铺的无限满足。

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You’ve been living in NY City, Tokyo, Seoul, London and now Beijing. Which one do you like better?

I would say NY, and not only because it’s my hometown, but because it’s where the quality of the products around you and the cost of living are perfectly balanced. I love Tokyo for example, but generally good things are very expensive, are they food or accessories or clothes. But when it came to open a new business, I knew I couldn’t raise funding in NY as the environment is extremely competitive and at the same time I’ve always known that China is a land of opportunities. When I met my friends – now partners – and they suggested we checked Beijing out I embraced this adventure with open heart and mindset.

你在纽约、东京、首尔、伦敦和北京都生活过。你更喜欢哪个城市?

我认为是纽约吧,不仅仅是因为它是我的故乡,还因为那里产品的质量和生活成本处在一种完美的平衡关系。比方说,我也爱东京,但那里优质的产品非常昂贵,不管是食物、小东西还是衣服。然而在创业方面,我清楚在纽约我很难筹到资金,因为那里的竞争异常激烈,同时我也了解到中国还是一片充满机会的热土。当我跟朋友(现在是合伙人啦)交谈时,他们建议去试试北京,我张开双臂满怀热情地开始了这段冒险奇遇。

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Who’s the Sanlipop team?

It’s 5 of us, three guys and two girls – and this was scary at the beginning because we have completely different personalities. Now, after almost two years, I know this is in fact our biggest strength. Also, we have very varied cultural backgrounds and this help when you are trying to spread a wide message. I’m personally in charge of menswear and lifestyle buying – I get to speak with many different people. But I’m also the guy who gets to shout at people – I’m the oldest in the team so I’m kind of the old brother. The girls are the goos cops and try to calm down the ones who have been shouted at. They approach issues in a very feminine way.

给我们介绍下Sanlipop团队吧。

我们团队由5人组成,3个男生和2个女生 – 一开始这挺让人胆战心惊的,因为我们的个性截然不同。然而经过两年的时间,现在看来,这其实是我们最大的优势。同时我们的文化背景差异也很大,这对信息的扩散很有帮助。我主要负责男装和生活方式产品,所以有机会接触到很多各式各样的人。但同时我也是冲人吼的那个啦,毕竟我是团队里最年长的,就像他们的大哥。女生就扮演唱红脸的角色啦,她们会安慰被吼的人。女性的特质使得她们在面对这样的问题时比较温柔。

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Do you spend time in the shops?

Of course we have sales staff in charge, but we make turns and we all try to spend as much time as possible at the stores. It’s very important to get to know the customers better – especially for me, a foreigner. I’ve always pictured Chinese people wearing extremely bold colors and patterns and I was surprised to see that there is more than that. I’ve realised our customers have in fact tastes that are closer to western standards – maybe because most of them have international backgrounds. By being in the shop you get a feedback right away – and this is priceless.

你经常在店里吗?

我们有销售助理,但我们自己也轮流排班,尽量多花些时间在店里。这对了解顾客非常重要 – 尤其对我这个外国人来说。我头脑里设想的中国人都穿着特别大胆的颜色和图案,但实际上我惊奇地发现并不仅如此。我意识到其实我们顾客的品味更接近西方的审美 – 或许因为大部分人都有国际化的背景。如果你人在店里,你能获得第一手的顾客反馈 – 这是无价的。

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How do you select the brands you work with?

All the brands we have at the shops are from abroad but this was not a rational choice. I was initially looking for pieces locally manufactured but the distribution for these products is extremely difficult, because these brands tend to deal only with some showrooms, and we are out of that loop. Also, we don’t mind going upstream: there is a strong trend of concept stores proudly offering Chinese products only and we decided to have imported products instead. Moreover, very often Chinese designers are not mature yet and so for now it’s easier for us to look abroad.

你是怎样选择合作品牌?

目前Sanlipop所有品牌都是国外进口的,但这并不理性。最开始,我去找过一些本土制造商,但后来发现这些产品经销太难了。因为,这些产品只跟品牌展厅合作,我们无法满足。但我们不担心反其道行之,因为现在已经有很多概念店只提供本土品牌了,我们决定只提供进口产品。不仅如此,很多时候中国的设计师还不够成熟,所以对我们来说,把眼光放在海外品牌反而容易些。

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How was Sanlipop born?

I didn’t know Beijing that well when we decided to start this adventure but I’d researched China a lot. When we were looking for the perfect venue we had no doubts it would be Sanlitun: Guomao was a bit too glossy, the hutong area too… small. We figured our customers would drive their cars to the shop and would find it uncomfortable if they could not get close. When I visited the area for the first time, it was very obvious. Our shop was the first one to open on Sanlitun Lu – and we simply wanted to be different. We wanted to offer quality products in a non-intimidating environment. The key to our success is our sales staff – they know the story behind every single piece we have in the store and they now how to interact with customers.

跟我们说说Sanlipop的开店过程吧。

我们决定创业的时候其实对北京还不太了解,但我已经做了很多功课。为店铺选址时,我们一致决定三里屯是不二选择。相比较来看,国贸太光鲜,有胡同的地儿很小。试想一下,如果我们的顾客开车过来,但因为交通原因止步就太郁闷了。第一次来看店址的时候,我就相中了。我们也是第一家把店开在三里屯路的商家,就是想要特别一点。我们希望能为顾客提供友善的体验,还有销售同事的努力:他们深谙品牌故事,对每件单品都非常熟悉,更懂得如何与顾客进行沟通。

 

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How do you train them?

We all go through training regularly. It’s not about selling more, it’s about establishing a relationship with clients. We spend lot of time preparing developing programs for our team but it’s completely worth it. Our staff come from Louis Vuitton, Alexander Mc Queen and other gigantic fashion conglomerates and they are surprised buy the kind of training we offer them. It’s more than what not to say and how to address people. It’s about being able to share our passion and our love for beautiful products. And they are such fast learners!

你是如何培训销售助理的?

我们会定期进行培训。关键不是卖得多,而是跟顾客建立一种关系。我们在培训项目上花费了大量的时间,但这完全是值得的。我们的销售助理来自Louis Vuitton, Alexander Mc Queen和其它巨头时尚集团,我们提供的培训仍然让他们感到意外。培训不仅仅是教你哪些话不能说,或者该怎样称呼顾客。更多的是训练你如何分享对这些美丽单品的热情和喜爱。我们的销售学得非常快!

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How is it going now that you also have M Goods?

M Goods it’s a different project. It’s in 798 (arty district in Beijing) and it’s the shop of a museum. We mostly have lifestyle pieces there and the main difference is that there is lots of traffic so we get to interact with different people from different backgrounds and different standards. The focus of the shop is design – we offer quality products that age with you and that serve a precise purpose. For me – M Goods is an open window on Chinese habits and traditions.

你们还有 M Goods 这家店,跟我们说说这家店的情况吧。

木木商店比较特别,它位于北京798艺术区,是博物馆商店。这儿主要是生活类的小物品,比较不一样的是,这儿的客流量很大,所以我们会有机会跟不同爱好、不同标准的顾客们打交道。这家店更注重设计,我们为不同年龄段的客户提供针对性的高品质产品。对我来说,M Goods是了解中国传统、习俗的一扇窗户。

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Too often the fashion world is populated by people who have some talent or flair but not enough knowledge or substance. Han is different. He is a dreamer of course – we all are – and he decided to move to the opposite side of his world to follow his vision, but at the same time he is extremely down to earth and balanced. And I loved our conversation. By the way, a bigger flagship store is coming – the fab 5 are already working on it. I can’t wait – and am already saving. I bet you are the same!

时尚行业里从不缺乏天才和有天分的人,但极少还能同时拥有深厚的知识和足够的沉淀。但是,Han是特别的。当然他同时也是位梦想家——我们俩都是,跋山涉水地到地球另一端追逐梦想,但Han又是极其脚踏实地的。两个人的聊天让彼此都很愉快。噢,顺便跟大家说一声,他们更大的一家旗舰店就要开业了,目前五位创始人都在忙碌地做准备。太期待了,你们呢?赶快一起来看一看吧。

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Sanlipop e’ una piccola boutique nel quartiere delle ambasciate. M Goods e’ il gift shop di un museo nel quartiere art. Dietro queste due realtà il team di 5 persone più multiculturale e pop che io abbia mai conosciuto. Due ragazze e tre ragazzi provenienti da diverse parti del mondo che si sono incontrati a Londra mentre studiavano a Central Saint Martins e hanno dato corpo al loro sogno. Che sta andando alla grande.

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For all the pictures, special thanks to Sanlipop.

感谢Sanlipop提供所有的图片.

 

Translation by Vivian Zhou.

翻译由Vivian Zhou完成.

 


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