Saturday, July 17, 2010

Gone Fishing

We love when a collection of well-researched and innovative – yet of course deceptively simple – garments makes its way into Début. This is what business and commerce are all about: fuel for the creative boiler rooms driving the retail industry.

Los Angeles-born and raised Kevin Joo Hwang is but one of the hard-working talents coming out of Parsons (he participated in the recent designer showcase at Début in June). His collection shown comprehensively, resting on brushed steel fixtures looks real, and exudes a calm sophistication.

View his slouchy olive shorts layered over loose, knit leggings, or a buttery beige silk jacket with the relaxed, billowing nature of a Poiret gown, and it is apparent that Hwang has direction smacking of newness without overwrought or displaced characteristics. On the body, each piece takes on a new life – alternatively flirty and chic, or utterly relaxed. Jackets are hand-tucked, seamed and contoured with grosgrain applications or jet bead trim. Skirts and pants feature unique characteristics – ivory canvas belts or minimal applications of cargo-inspired pockets.

When asked about this collection, Hwang mentioned beginning with research of American utilitarian work wear, which evolved to an exploration of fishermen clothing – from a Western perspective and then South East Asia. He wanted to capture the genre’s modern ease balanced by function and elegance. Nor did he forget who his likely, city-dwelling customer is: a woman who wants the new, often the contemporary, without sacrificing originality and technique.

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