The Korea Herald


Menswear designers on quest to establish brand identity

Seoul Fashion Week starts with well-received menswear collections for 2014 fall and winter season

By Lee Woo-young

Published : March 23, 2014 - 20:14

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A week of fashion showcases for the 2014 fall and winter season began with menswear collections on Friday and Saturday at Seoul Fashion Week. This year, designers and crowds of fashionistas gathered at the newly opened futuristic Dongdaemun Design Plaza and Park.

Menswear designers mixed fashion with art, attempting to find better fabric and colors to represent their identities.

Designer Kimseoryong of the eponymous brand based his collection upon his journey to define the identity for his collection. His signature style of clean-cut, finely tailored suits evolved as the designer mixed soft colors and feel-good fabrics. Using embroidery and beading, the designer brought out the “glamor hidden inside men.” 
Kimseoryong (Seoul Fashion Week) Kimseoryong (Seoul Fashion Week)

“Keeping the overall silhouette simple, I tried to express elegance and glamor that I can draw from men through the use of silk, wool, embroidery and beading,” said Kim backstage.

His signature three-piece wool suit came in light green and gray; long oversized wool coats looked cozy and warm in wool jacquard and embroidered and beaded trench coats added a feminine feel to the collection.

For the last couple of collections, Cy Choi has set a fashion career on crossing the boundaries of art and fashion. For this season, he presented an interesting combination of military style and artistic performance in collaboration with artist Chang Sung-eun. 
Cy Choi (Seoul Fashion Week) Cy Choi (Seoul Fashion Week)

“The collection is based on the military style tailoring. At the same time, I wanted to see the model and the clothes as an art piece,” said the designer Choi Cheol-yong in the back stage.

What made the look more of an abstract art piece was intriguing accessories of vinyl plastic bags, stacked yellow and black duct tape, and a tower of black balloons glued together, made in collaboration with artist Chang.

The overall Cy Choi collection received a good response from buyers.

“His collection has become more sophisticated. They are wearable, yet evoke the imagination with artistic features,” said a Korean buyer at the show.

Gold zippers accented understated black leather jackets, black coats and skinny pants. Camouflage patterned pants and a blazer gave a strong impression of his show. Pink and blue brightened the monotone-dominated fall and winter looks. 
VanHart di Albazar (Seoul Fashion Week) VanHart di Albazar (Seoul Fashion Week)

Jung Du-young of VanHart di Albazar took inspiration for his fall and winter showcase from surrealist Italian painter Giorgio de Chirico. He incorporated major elements of his paintings such as the use of colors and unbalanced composition in smartly tailored suits, coats and jackets. His usual all-black looks included a burst of color such as yellow, brown and dark red.

Opening the catwalk for his show was veteran model Jang Yoon-ju in a gray suit with a navy long coat thrown over it.

Emerging young designer Moonsoo Kwon presented three-button alpaca and wool blended coats, chalk stripe oversized coats and slim-fitted pants, which were infused with the designer’s witty expressions. Polka dot patterns on loose-fit pants, tartan plaid or buffalo check patterned casual shirts worn under overcoats were hopeful symbols the designer intended after seeing the photo “The Walk to Paradise Garden” by photojournalist W. Eugene Smith. 
Munsoo Kwon (Seoul Fashion Week) Munsoo Kwon (Seoul Fashion Week)

Kwon said he wanted his collection to send the message of hope and faith which the photographer tried to capture in the photo of two young children walking out to a sun-lit spot in the woods.

More details such as a small golden key attached on lapels and a houndstooth pattern inside jackets and overcoats reassured the designer’s casual take on well-tailored designs.

By Lee Woo-young (