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That Drum Machine Ain’t Got No Soul, and Seoul Ain’t Got No Style; Thoughts on Seoul’s Fashion Scene

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Fashion terrorists, the lot of them. They were all fashion terrorists…I was overwhelmingly told, often from people with little-to-no style, that I would be so bored in South Korea. Even at Seoul Fashion Week, I was assured I would be unbelievably and unforgivably bored.

Why?

Because, they’ve simply got no style.

I wasn’t sure how to take it, why was everyone so focused on reassuring me of my imminent boredom? Perhaps it’s because I can’t hide from my fashion persona. No matter who I met in South Korea, be they native, foreign or just passing through, made vocal assumptions about my having a fashion career. Clearly, I was one of those Fashion People. Clearly, I needed to be warned. Even some of the Korean locals I met asked me, in my professional opinion, if I thought all Koreans just tried to look the same? SeoulFashionWeekSS2017-Fashion-Needs-Jesus.gif

Even by the time Seoul Fashion Week rolled around, some of the international press (that stayed on the ground for approximately 1-2 days) made bold assumptions about how they lacked style and they have no subcultures, often comparing it to the nearby island nation which has made waves in the fashion industry (Japan, if you hadn’t caught my drift).

What was this all about? Here’s my response to the whole “They All Look Alike” Camp:

Plenty of foreigners come from countries and communities where “they all look alike too”, the difference being less noticeable because of physical differences in racial spectrum, not because the lot of them are actually dressing vastly differently. It’s that tribalism that we lean to as humans, in hyper-diverse cities, however, this tribalism may simply have more striking visual differences, but take out the varying racial features, plenty of people still look very much the same. People stick to their uniforms, whatever those uniforms may be. The Wall Streeters have their own uniform, sure one may have faded hair, one may have blonde straight hair, one may have brown wavy hair, but rest assured, there’s still a uniform that is relatively easy to spot. In other words, these self-appointed fashion critics are missing a lot of the bigger point, simply because they are looking at a more homogenous major city. Funny enough, many of these foreigners who were so quick to dismiss Seoul’s fashion, dressed eerily similar themselves, they just looked a tad bit more diverse.  *DRAMATIC EYEROLL* See?

“You are not special. You’re not a beautiful and unique snowflake. You’re the same decaying organic matter as everything else.”

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Le sigh.

Now that I’ve managed to insert an alarmingly accurate quote from one of my favorite books/films of all time, let’s look at some street fashion from the emerging Seoul scene, shall we? :

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@Apehouse

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@TheSeoulChild

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So, there you have it, ending with visions from the front row. The moral of the story, Seoul is still emerging and developing a sense of who it is in fashion, but it doesn’t mean fashion doesn’t exist there, there’s a lot more to it than meets the eye. See even more by following the story on Instagram: @FashionNeedsJesus

XoXo,

S.

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SEOUL FASHION WEEK, S/S ’17 pushBUTTON Collection Review

What was spectacular about pushBUTTON’s Spring/Summer 2017 show? I’ll admit, there was a subtle shock to see every man stroll down the runway in a pair of heels. There’s just something I can appreciate about the democratization of pain. Clever. But, really, that wasn’t the most spectacular thing. The brilliance in the collection was held really in the distance of the collection. And just what do I mean by that, after all, this girl was sitting pretty on pushBUTTON SS 2017-FASHION NEEDS JESUS 16.jpgthe front row? Well, just that as a stylist, it’s easy for me to focus on pieces. I start wardrobing in my head the minute I see a piece I like. Which client would that work for, what would pair well in his closet, what could I style that with on a shoot? Immediately, my mind wonders. In fact, with several shows I saw at Seoul Fashion Week, I would get excited about some great pieces. At pushBUTTON, however, the brilliance was in the distance, I found myself getting excited about just about every look that strolled down the runway. Funky, colorful, and cohesive while maintaining an air of uniqueness. Were I a fashion buyer, I’d be in trouble. That’s what I loved about pushBUTTON. As if my word weren’t proof enough, pushBUTTON’s collection was named one of the best of the season, further establishing their global presence!

Candied stripes and colors filled the venue, with boxy cuts, and willowy drapes. The whole pushBUTTON SS 2017-FASHION NEEDS JESUS 19.jpgthing felt like a perfect summer day. The day where you hold hands with someone you love, and cruise in a drop top with the sun kissing your shoulders. Where you were headed exactly, God only knows; a music festival, a beach, a club that has you waitlisted for a month before you can even get in, or dinner at that lovely little restaurant on the coast you’ve always wanted to try, perhaps. Either way, the cozy, cool pieces from pushBUTTON would easily take you to the next level.

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pushbutton-ss-2017-fashion-needs-jesus-14Gold pants? Check. Baby blue, updated, pussy-bow blouse. Check. Green jumper with just pushBUTTON SS 2017-FASHION NEEDS JESUS 4.jpgthe right amount of side boob action for the ultra daring? Check. Sheer lavender midi dress you didn’t know you needed, but totally do? Check. The crimson ultra wide-leg pant that will have you sashaying down the street? Check. I could go on, but you get the idea.

The retro references, modern cuts and lovely color palette created the perfect distance. The type of woman who will wear this collection may be your very best friend, and your closest confidant, however, the minute she puts on pushBUTTON, she’s so cool that she’s practically untouchable, and miles above the rest.

 

XoXo,

S.

Catch awesome street style from Seoul Fashion Week, and the Fashion Diaries on our Insta @FashionNeedsJesus and our Facebook page!

 

Seoul Fashion Week, S/S ’17 Nohke Collection Review

Slits, slants, and structured beauty. That’s the collection that presented itself for Nohke’s Spring/Summer 2017 year, and it was positively riveting. I sat, barely contained in my seat, watching the models stroll by, easily carrying the cleverly designed pieces that elegantly draped their forms. Bold, and riveting, and undoubtedly one of the best. As if I weren’t already expert enough, Nohke’s designer,  MiSun Jung, won an award for being one of the top 10 collections presenting at Seoul Fashion Week.  Her inspiration was walking at night, a notion easily found in both the utter romance, and the fluid movement in her collection.

Nohke’s collection from Seoul’s most recent Fashion Week, was by far, one of my absolute favorites, especially for womenswear. The menswear collections at Seoul Fashion Week have by far dominated, in terms of innovation, silhouettes, and general fanciful colors and patterns. Nohke SS 2017-Fashion Needs Jesus 1.jpgAs such, to see such innovation in womenswear was a breath of fresh air. From the mature color palette, utilizing primary and secondary colors paired with dove neutrals helped the ready-to-wear collection feel all the more accessible to the fashion types making their presence known at Dongdaemun Design Plaza(Seoul Fashion Week’s residence).

Granted, where does one wear such a collection?

My answer? Anywhere. While we got to see sharp tailoring, boxy silhouettes, and the occasional  brazen  color, each piece was intimately wearable. Bold. Stylish. Unique. Really, that’s what I felt this collection was about. With the slits, we got to experience bits of femininity exposed. I thought it was wildly romantic, to flirt with what you care to show of yourself, and that which you care not to expose and share that with an ever-captive audience. After all, isn’t the world always watching? I suppose that’s a story for another day. Suffice it to say, Sphinx was impressed. And can we talk about that fabulous, boxy, modern answer to the ever classic motorcycle jacket, if I ever saw one?!!! J’adore!

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So in love with this Nohke jacket, worn by model YoonYoung Bae.

With the colors, pulling from the pure strength of primary colors, as other collections this season seemed fond of doing, primary red, yellow, and blue found themselves anchoring Nohke’s collection. From a foundation of pure and unadulterated color, designer MiSun Jung was able to offer stability and subtlety in using ice white, dove gray, silver, and black, while maintaining interest by introducing shades of olive green, sun-bleached khaki. Nohke SS 2017-Fashion Needs Jesus 7.jpg

Consistently, the Nohke collection dared to challenge traditionally feminine silhouettes with the notion of exposure. I thoroughly enjoyed watching this collection walk the runway, and can’t wait to continue watching how Nohke’s designer, MiSun Jung, develops her collections on the runway, and on the increasing international eyes watching in restless anticipation.

XoXo,

S

View the rest of the collection here. Also, don’t forget to follow us on Instagram: @FashionNeedsJesus, for our daily fashion diaries!