Combined with the increasing trajectory of Korean fashion’s popularity around the world, there couldn’t be a better time to acquaint ourselves with some of Korea’s best fashion designers. In the regular course of SFW events, the runways were separated into two categories: Seoul Collection for established designers and Generation Next for up and coming designers. We’re shining a spotlight on a designer from each who caught our attention to highlight the existing and incoming talent in the Korean fashion industry.
Established womenswear brand Oct31 stole the show in the Seoul Collection category. The label does its best work in creating contemporary yet classic garments designed for everyday wear, easily styled with a pair of heels or sneakers.
With every collection, their aim is to redefine the traditional values of womenswear with their take on a modern twist. It’s clear that one of the major ways they do this is through manipulating the silhouette, carefully combining structured pieces with the oversized fit.
A key standout from their collection is their co-ord sets, coming in a range of muted tones in beige, navy and, of course, black - a great contribution to the co-ord trend we’re currently seeing in fashion globally.
Recently launched brand MANOD, founded in 2018 by designer Lim Heonsu, was a definite standout of the Generation Next shows. Its ethos finds its roots in postmodernism, with the label aiming to create comfortable pieces with minimalist functional details for both men and women.
Since their launch, MANOD have crafted a number of streetwear-oriented collections, but for their SFW Spring/Summer 2021 collection, they presented bold monochromes mixed with the occasional thought-provoking print. The collection’s theme is best described as “utilitarian, but for the streets” – a style that Korean designers implement flawlessly.
Key pieces of the collection feature mixed outer garments and fatigue pants, with layering and mixed-textured fabrics displayed prominently throughout the collection. The colour palette and styling of MANOD’s SS21 looks make it clear that the collection is all about blending masculine details with the feminine – for example, pairing a sheer shirt with leather-look pants.
Now more than ever, Korean fashion brands are being assertive, and it’s showing not only in the clothing, but in the growing popularity of Korean fashion around the world.
For more on global fashion, check out our feature on Paris Fashion Week.