Seoul Fashion Week highlights: #MeToo, street style and traditional tailored looks star in varied show
Miss Gee Collection’s #MeToo-themed show was the talk of South Korean fashion circles after last week’s Seoul Fashion Week, while veteran designer Kim Hye-soon’s creations and Munsoo Kwon’s menswear also caused a stir
As temperatures rise and cherry blossom season sets in on South Korea, an array of autumn and winter styles have hit the runways at Seoul Fashion Week. The event was held last week at the Dongdaemun Design Plaza, a local landmark designed by the late Zaha Hadid.
While street style continues to be an enduring theme for many heavily K-pop-influenced collections and brands, this season’s shows also saw a continuation of tailored looks ranging from structured British-inspired tweed outerwear to boxy but slimmed down mohair coats.
Designers such as Blindness showcased their signature maximalist looks, while others such as crowd-pleaser Beyond Closet unveiled more of their usual cartoon-meets-British schoolboy looks.
Here are some of the top shows from the event:
Miss Gee Collection
The collection designed by Gee Choon-hee may have taken place midweek, but the #MeToo-themed show became the talk of town for the rest of the event. Models opened the show in a series of T-shirts emblazoned with #MeToo, #Speak and #WithYou – all terms that have been trending on Korean social media since the #MeToo movement gain prominence in Korea earlier this year.
A series of tweed suit sets, fur-lined parkas and evening wear gowns followed, but it was the opening message and choice of music – Peaches’ F*** the Pain Away – that lingered on long after the show.
Veteran South Korean designer, Kim Hye-soon presented a series of her signature hanboks (traditional Korean dress) at the opening soirée of Seoul Fashion Week. Contemporary folk music was performed live during the show, adding to the experience.
The colourful collection included a variety of traditional jewel-tone hanboks in patterned silks, brocade and modern faux fur embellishes.
“This collection is about the han-lyang,” Munsoo Kwon says, referring to a group of unemployed aristocrats who enjoyed the good life during the Choson Dynasty. “They looked so carefree.” Kwon’s latest menswear collection has reimagined the han-lyang in modern society as social media influencers and bon vivants in a series of streetwear-influenced overcoats, fleece jumpers and his signature billowing trousers.
Designed by Park Seung-gun, the brand presented a collection that brought to mind what French labels such as Isabel Marant might design if they were around in the ’80s. The womenswear show featured lots of strong streetwear-influenced statement pieces such as ankle boots with lightning bolt heels, oversized bomber-silhouetted leather jackets, fun fur scarves, tailored plaids, and frameless cat-eye glasses with tinted lenses.
Ji Ho-young, founder of Heta, which is pronounced without the “H”, presented a series of sport-meets-streetwear looks in his signature almost all-black designs. Ji also played with concepts of layering with crop-cut vests layered over blazers and low-waist chequered-print trousers.