Five trendy 2018 Winter Olympics K-fashion items to keep you feeling warm and looking cool
The Pyeongchang Winter Olympics starts in South Korea this week and brands from North Face to Lotte have launched stylish clothes and accessories in conjunction with the event. Here are our pick of the best
This month’s Pyeongchang Winter Olympics marks the first time South Korea will have hosted the Games since the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul.
The event will showcase a whole different face of the nation since it held the Games for the first time exactly 30 years ago. The Seoul Olympics marked the beginning of a new era of globalisation and development for the formerly reclusive nation. For the first time, large numbers of international visitors were welcomed to the country, while outbound tourism for South Koreans became permitted the year after in 1989.
Those Olympics also marked the beginning of a new era of cultural exchanges and foreign influences entering the country, particularly from the West.
Over the past three decades, besides tech innovations and its robust economy, South Korea has become a regional culture powerhouse in its own right with the development of key cultural industries including K-pop, K-dramas, K-beauty and K-fashion.
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For spectators, sports events will not be the only highlight of next month’s Games. Visitors will get the chance to glimpse the exciting street style scene that South Korea has become renowned for, as well as to peruse the local shops.
Along with South Korea’s extremely cold temperatures this year (expected to dip as low as -10 degrees Celsius on some nights), the recent craze for long puffer coats in the country has been helped by the return of down coats on the runways of fashion shows such as Balenciaga. Besides The North Face, South Korean conglomerate Lotte is the event’s only other official licensed retail partner and distributor that sells the items.
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Lotte launched its official “Passion Connected” Pyeongchang brand of long puffer coats in November, which sold out almost immediately. “Through aggressive marketing, we hope that our group will be known worldwide even after the Olympics,” a Lotte representative told local press.
Visitors can also expect to see Soohorang and Bandabi, a white tiger and a black Asiatic bear who are the official cartoon mascots of the 2018 Winter Games and 2018 Winter Paralympics, respectively, on everything from cutely designed gloves to toques and T-shirts.
Here are some items to check out at the upcoming event.
The North Face men’s black Exploring coat
The North Face has designed a series of long cocoon-style “padding” coats in white, charcoal grey and black that sold out online almost instantly after they launched.
Finger heart gloves in grey
In Korea, crossing your thumb and index fingers in the shape of a heart is a fun romantic gesture. The official Pyeongchang store offers three different variations of these gloves perfectly made for Instagram moments.
The North Face PC Loyalton Jacket in pink
This zip-up sweatshirt insulated with microfleece will keep you warm in the chill at the opening event, scheduled to take place at an outdoor stadium.
Twin Soohorang headband
Anyone who has ever been to a K-pop concert in South Korea will be familiar with the fancy headwear that fans often don to cheer on their favourite performers. The Olympics will be no different, with these festive mascot-themed headbands for anyone who wants to cheer on team Korea or the event itself.
Heart beanie in white
The perfect accompaniment to the finger heart gloves, the heart beanie comes in three colour variations. We like this one best because it represents the colours of South Korea’s flag.