This story originally appeared on i-D Japan.
“Korean fashion is poetic and straightforward, but soft and highly effective at the identical time,” states Seoul-centered designer Kiminte Kimhēkim. His eponymous model, KIMHĒKIM – characterised by a minimalist color palette and staples which includes trench coats, basic white shirts and wide denim trousers – uses elements and particulars encouraged by hanbok or classic Korean garments. In many approaches, the manufacturer embodies modern day Korean stylish: the black-and-white chima jeogori is uncomplicated the silhouette is daring. But there is some thing obviously strange about his designs… a quantity of them are manufactured from hair.
Following researching fashion in Seoul and Paris, Kiminte interned for 4 seasons at Nicolas Ghesquière-era Balenciaga. Impressed by witnessing craftspeople with distinctive skills operating alongside one another on a one piece, he made a decision then and there that he wished his own atelier his individual workforce generating couture-excellent apparel. He launched KIMHĒKIM in 2014 and has given that realised his desire, with a studio found in the historic Samcheong-dong neighbourhood of Seoul, surrounded by galleries and museums. The space, a mix of custom and creativity, is a fitting base for the brand and delivers the designer with enough inspiration.
Refreshing from demonstrating his textural AW22 collection at Paris Style Week, we spoke to Kiminte about his obsession with hair and how he brought his surreal models to everyday living.
Hello Kiminte! What are you donning nowadays?
A black sweatshirt from L.E.J and black flannel trousers from NEU-IN.
This season’s assortment with the hair was amazing! How was it produced?
I received the concept when I was undertaking area investigation with my assistant. We identified an outdated wig store in the north of Seoul, and whilst we have been discovering the store together, we found out a large quantity of hairpieces that even the operator didn’t know existed. As before long as I noticed them, I was like, “this is it!”. I took them again to my studio and started weaving the hair – but when it will come to generating long lasting clothes from hair, it turns out you can’t just weave it. Specific approaches have to be incorporated. It took me a entire 7 days to arrive at the closing technique.
This assortment is referred to as ‘obsession no.4’. What is it about hair that you are obsessed with, Kiminte?
I really like the come to feel of my hair. Escalating up, I made use of to engage in with Barbie doll hair. I also employed to braid my cousins’ hair, and those are incredibly pricey reminiscences for me. In this selection, I employed numerous kinds of hair parts: straight hair, curly hair, black, brown and blonde. It was a lot of enjoyment to do the job with hair of distinctive styles and colors while creating the apparel.
We’re also intrigued in your personal iconic hair slash – all those major bangs above your eyes!
When I stand in entrance of folks as a brand designer, I really don’t genuinely want people today to see my expression. I want folks to concentrate on the collection somewhat than my face. I have been searching for a lovely hairstyle that hides my eyes, which led me to my present haircut.
And apart from hair, what else are you into these days?
These days, I’ve been into health and skincare. I want to be as wonderful as my collections.
Notify us about your time as an intern at Balenciaga. What was it like operating for Nicolas Ghesquière?
I was the youngest person in the studio. I was shy, so I was constantly hesitant to talk instantly to Nicolas. I learnt a large amount from shifting back again and forth in between the Maison’s design studio and the atelier. I was usually confused by the archives, especially individuals of Cristóbal Balenciaga, the founder of the manufacturer.
Notify us about the KIMHĒKIM workforce.
This 12 months, we’re doing work with a workforce of 10 men and women. I have a indicating in my heart: ‘If you want to go quickly, go by yourself. If you want to go far, go alongside one another.’ My staff associates inspire me and encourage me when I’m with them. They really mean a ton to me.
We have an understanding of that you’re also intrigued in environmental problems. What initiatives are you using as a brand name?
We use recycled paper for the packaging of our merchandise. We have also just lately developed shopping luggage produced from biodegradable plastic. The clothing field takes advantage of massive amounts of polyester and plastic in creation and packaging. We think that to reach true sustainability, we need to have to minimize the sum of products that cannot be recycled. We hope that this modest exertion will help to make improvements to environmental air pollution in some small way.
Rumour has it you have obtained a quantity of requests to make costumes for K-pop idols – are you hunting to expand into that field?
Not at the second. Despite the fact that I really like listening to K-pop, I sense a big discrepancy between the aesthetic of the field and the collections I make. As a admirer, I love it, but it will be a when before I can draw inspiration from it.