Hanbok fair takes place at Seoul Station

By Lim Jeong-yeo
  • Published : Jan 21, 2018 - 19:48
  • Updated : Jan 22, 2018 - 09:33

The 2018 Hanbok Winter Market, featuring various styles of Korean traditional costume hanbok, is taking place at Culture Station Seoul 284. The event began Friday and runs through Monday. 

Modern interpretations of hanbok are displayed at Culture Station Seoul 284. (Lim Jeong-yeo/The Korea Herald)

Held jointly by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and Hanbok Advancement Center, the event features some 50 hanbok brands’ pop-up stores, where various styles of hanbok are showcased and sold with accessories. The venue of Culture Station Seoul 284, built in 1900 as the original Seoul Station and restored more recently to the look of its heyday, blended well with the traditional and modern fashion.

Culture Station Seoul 286 (Lim Jeong-yeo/The Korea Herald)

Hanbok is famous for its abundant skirt, the use of silk and bespoke tailoring. Prices can shoot up to the millions of won, depending on the maker and materials used. Hanbok is mostly worn during traditional family gatherings and at weddings. But in recent years, modernized designs of hanbok, called “saenghwal hanbok,” have drawn younger consumers with more affordable prices to don the clothes in daily life and for fun when visiting old palaces.

Saenghwal hanbok, or “lifestyle hanbok,” is differentiated from the traditional garb with simplified designs and unconventional use of textiles.

Yoon Jung-sun of Sewing Landscape (Lim Jeong-yeo/The Korea Herald)

Yoon Jung-sun, the next successor of the family-run Sewing Landscape and participant at the market, said, “It is indeed a positive effect that through saenghwal hanbok more people are taking interest in the general hanbok.”

“However, the designs of the traditional dress must be preserved, and it is my wish that the people will wear saenghwal hanbok on daily occasions and don the traditional garb on special, important days,” Kim said.

The event also has experiential programs for visitors to participate in handicraft classes for hanbok ornaments. Educational programs for young children teach basic information on the traditional clothes and the etiquette that goes with it. A photo-taking space helps visitors preserve memories wearing hanbok for free.

Kim Shin-young, a 25-year-old who was looking through the shops, said, “Having so many brands in one spot is helping me discover options I didn’t know before.”

The Hanbok Winter Market is anticipated to invigorate demand for the cultural articles. A Culture Ministry official who took part in running the event hoped the event would prove an opportunity for hanbok makers to find more ways to promote themselves and for the consumers to familiarize themselves with the culture of hanbok.

By Lim Jeong-yeo (