Ok

En poursuivant votre navigation sur ce site, vous acceptez l'utilisation de cookies. Ces derniers assurent le bon fonctionnement de nos services. En savoir plus.

23/12/2017

A New Generation of Beautiful Loners Is Changing Seoul Fashion for the Better

It is just after midnight in Seoul, and the streets in Itaewon have flooded with local kids hopping between clubs. Shots of flavored vodka and soju are passed around, tossed down throats and into tumblers of beer, and everyone dances together until sunrise in concrete rooms that smell of sweat. It is this carefree image of Korean youth culture that has persisted until now. Yet 20 minutes away in Yeonnam-dong, a quieter picture of rebellion has emerged: of 20-somethings, sitting alone in a café with a glass of wine and finding freedom in ordinary solitude. “Nae mam daero” has become their rallying cry—“my way”—and it is one reason why Seoul fashion is on the cusp of a new creative high.

2017 was the year that the honjok, or loner, movement fully took root in Seoul; there are now more Koreans living alone than in couples or families. Already an alien concept (it is standard to live with parents until marriage), the communal city has been shaken by so much more. There is honsul (drinking alone) and honbap (eating alone) and a slew of little wine bars and hole-in-the-wall diners have popped up in Yeonnam-dong to cater to them—one can sit in a tidy cubicle with a private grill, turning single servings of short rib in front of a personal TV set. Last fall, a popular TV drama called Honsul, or Drinking Solo, riffed on the trend, and there is an entire magazine called Singles: “a fashion and lifestyle magazine that helps single people to be happy and proud in their choice.”

As with all things in Korea, it is impossible to separate this new independence movement from politics. It began last summer at Ewha Women’s University with the young women who launched peaceful protests against a corrupt official with ties to then–President Park Geun-hye. They had always lived by the book, yet those same rules never applied to those in power. Fed up with the status quo, their voices grew so loud that they ultimately toppled her government. Then there’s the looming presence of North Korea, whose threatening existence is so deeply embedded in daily life. But the rise of Donald Trump caused a shift: When things could collapse at any moment, the kids seemed to say, Why waste another second toeing the line?

It takes shape in small ways: a solo trip to the movies, skipping the office happy hour for a night at home. There is some concern among the older generation that the youths have become too focused on the self by moving away from community and family. There is always some danger in too much isolation. It’s one reason why many honjok have joined up, creating common kitchens and cooking collectives to thrive together, yet apart. Ultimately, it’s about taking time for yourself. It’s about letting go of society’s pressures—to get married by a certain age, to work for a steady salary, to never ask questions—and caring less what others think.

This spirit pulses through the artistic heart of Seoul. It is in model Ahreum Ahn, one of the coolest girls in the city, who chose to buck tradition and move out of her family home and into a cozy Cheongdam studio to further her dreams. She is shot here by Young Jun Koo, himself a self-made photographer living on his own in Hannam-dong, shooting street editorials by day and zipping off on a motorbike to a gaming café by night.

It can be found at Rare Market, a concept shop whose owners, Jessica Jung and Dami Kwon, have the most rebellious buy in the city, including the sorts of covetable labels (Attico, Facetasm, Eckhaus Latta) that local department stores would have never stocked. Now, they guide the trends. At Parc, a restaurant and hub for the fashion crowd, owner Pak Mogua set up a raw, intimate space—so unlike the chichi bistros of the time—to deliver the simple home cooking that singles might miss from their mother’s kitchens. Tucked into a corner with a bottle of soju and a bowl of stewed beef, it is the perfect spot to be alone.

More importantly, this new feeling is guiding the country’s most promising designers—Bajowoo of 99%IS-, Hyein Seo, Goen Jong of Goen.J, Sarah Cho of Scho Studio, and so many more, who refuse to work within set boundaries. They are paving their own way, and so their designs stand strong beside the best emerging talent from around the world. Breaking free is a beautiful thing.Read more at:uk prom dresses | formal dresses