The Clothes: As it does every season, Concept Korea features five of the most promising Korean designers to showcase their work at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week. This year the theme was “Five Korean Traditional Colors” representing the five natural elements including iron, tree, water, fire and earth. Designers Choi Bo Ko, Hongbum Kim or Cres. E Dim, KYE by Kathleen Key, Lie Sang Bong and Son Jung Wan presented a few key looks from their collections. But definite standouts were Lie Sang Bong–dubbed the “Alexander McQueen of Seoul”–who was inspired by the butterfly. The silhouette played into body conscious sheaths and blouses with pops of crimson. Son Jung Wan told us that she was inspired by Capri and had some elegant yet sexy and flirty dresses. Then there was newcomer to the scene, Choi Bo Ko, whose prints were so whimsical and playful that we thought we were witnessing the South Korean brother to Tokyo’s Rei Kawakubo.
The Hair & Makeup: Son Jung Wan had her girls sweep their hair into a bun with an elegant floral arrangement while faces had a clean palette; Choi Boko went for the on-the-go downtown look where most of the girls had their manes slightly curled; Hongbum Kim had his girls wear heavy eyeliner to thicken the brows and the hair was parted to the side; Lie Sang Bong had his models go for a side sweep and light, natural makeup; Kathleen Kye went for messy but straight hair with some girls rocking a side braid.
The Soundtrack: Typical runway fare of a thumping beat.
The Vibe: Heavy on Korean press with a sprinkle of New York’s fashion powerhouse: Fern Mallis, Simon Collins, Stan Herman.
The Front Row: Celebs in attendance at this presentation were Jojo, Angela Simmons, Omarion, and Aviva Drescher (Real Housewives of NYC).
Celebrity We’d Most Like to See Wearing this Collection: Son Jung Wan’s elegance could easily be worn by Carrie Mulligan; Choi Boko and his colorful apparel would fit nicely into Willow Smith’s closet; Lie Sang Bong’s creations could work on Lady Gaga (one of his favorite clients); Kathleen Kye’s easy breezy style would be great for any of the “it” downtown DJs like Mia Moretti or Leigh Lezark; Hongbum Kim’s tailored but sexy looks could be rocked by Kerry Washington or Jada Pinkett Smith.
WTF Moment: Was like a reunion of reality tv b-list stars all in one room: Aviva Drescher, Ryan Serhant (Million Dollar Listing NYC), Phillip Bloch, with semi-obscure singers Jojo and Omarion. What are they up to these days anyway?
What the designer said: “I really just want the world to see the beauty in Korean design,” said Son Jung Wan backstage. “For Korean designers to be respected is a dream for me.”