Last month, the Seoul Design Foundation held their biannual fashion week featuring top South Korean designers. The event managed to prove that the West doesn’t dominate fashion any longer. Seoul, a city famous for K-Pop and K-Beauty is now beginning to change the narrative when it comes to high-end fashion.
“Although streetwear is an integral part of Korean fashion, this year’s designers dabbled with international trends and classical androgynous designs”
Although fashion capitals Paris, New York, London and Milan dominate, they still often fall victim to stagnation and repetition. In Seoul, you can expect the unexpected. The city has become recognised as a fashion giant in South-East Asia and international recognition is quickly beginning to follow. The fashion scene intermingles streetwear with high fashion, meaning that the everyday person can equally inspire and be inspired by what they see on the runway.
Although streetwear is an integral part of Korean fashion, this year’s designers dabbled with international trends and classical androgynous designs, with some even incorporating political and social commentary into the mix. Gee Choon-Hee of Miss Gee Collection brought political commentary to her catwalk. Her models wore oversized t-shirts and sweaters adorned with bright red and blue slogans reading “#Speak,” and “#WithYou”, which were all in support of the #MeToo movement.
Designer Myoungsin Lee opted for sophisticated box cut blazers, tailored dresses, and coats in pastel and earthy hues, all in an effort to introduce corporate wear that can empower as well as impress. Discussing the ideas behind her collection, Lee told Vogue, “I want to make clothes that make women feel confident. Working in fashion, I haven’t felt discrimination, but when I speak to women in professions outside, I often do; I wanted to make a uniform for them.”
The attendees also managed to showcase their unique street style fashionistas from ages eight to eighty posed for photographs in Balenciaga sneakers, Supreme hoodies and Louis Vuitton bags, decorated with a few vintage pieces throughout. The unconventionality and enthusiasm seen in the street style alone make it clear that fashion in Seoul is quickly evolving. This year’s show leaves no doubt that Seoul is quickly establishing itself as one of the most prominent fashion capitals in the world.