Last season, Eudon Choi presented a Russian-inspired show for his hit debut at London Fashion Week. Today, the young designer took us back to his Korean roots with a show named Deokhye, after the last princess of the Joseon Dynasty who spent most of her tragic young life exiled in Japan.
While show notes can sometimes be pretentious rhetoric written to make clothing sound more deep than it is, in this case they provided an important back story to a complex collection. By the time the first model walked out, we understood that the basket-weave skullcaps and clinical, starched white shirts under tight navy corsets were more than just a “look.”
Models drifted by in a daze, to a soundtrack that was ever-so slightly creepy, in socks and Geisha-style sandals by Joanne Stoker. If the mood was starting to feel a little somber, Choi quickly followed up with soft, romantic dresses and separates in dusky pinks and sky blues.
Subtle Japanese influences came in the kimono-style coats over silk pyjama pants and the botanical prints with a decidedly Eastern feel. By now there’s little room for innovation on florals, but Choi made them drip and melt seamlessly into the fabric, for an effect that was at once melancholy and beautiful.
There were hints of trends scattered throughout, in the form of monochrome stripes, wide-leg tailored trousers, and curved hem tops with matching printed skirts underneath. However this was a gracefully simple, elegant collection, and one that would have stood perfectly well on its own.
The applause, the packed venue, and the rave reviews on the way out prove that Eudon Choi has officially been embraced by the industry. It’s only day one of London Fashion Week, and we can already see that London has a new designer to be excited about.