In a week when the British heritage brand Mulberry revealed it would be collaborating with Acne on a series of small leather goods, Seoul-based designer Hyun-min Han of the up-and-coming label Munn must be thrilled to bits to find himself in the exact same boat.
The designer unveiled his own bag collaboration with the brand last week during the Spring/Summer 2020 edition of Seoul Fashion Week, a team-up which had come off the back of his being part of an ongoing exchange programme with the British Fashion Council. It meant that earlier in the year he had showcased his menswear collection in London while the LFW's Cottweiler had, in return, showcased theirs in Seoul.
“I’m glad I came [to London],” laughed the designer backstage after his show recalling how, following his LFW debut, impressed, the CEO of Mulberry had been in touch about the collaboration: the result of which excitingly made its first official appearance at Seoul Fashion Week in a series of bags designed by Han (the Heritage and Chiltern backpacks, the Anthony, the Drawstring Backpack, the New Piccadilly, and the Amberley satchel) incorporating what has now become the signature jacquard fabric from his collection, along with specially-designed buckles.
But it was, however, among a more unfortunate turn of events that another of the week’s highlights, The Stolen Garment, from Central Saint Martins graduate Jungwoo Park, came to grab our attention.
As the story behind the label goes, it was back in 2017 that Park took part in an exhibition alongside 12 other graduates when somebody walked in and stole one of Park’s garments just a few hours after the show had opened. In a bid to find the stolen garment, a social media search soon began; the London metropolitan police were contacted (crime#65497381/17), but the piece, sadly, was never found.
And, so, Park turned to launching the label as a conceptual way to celebrate the missing piece which will now forever be somewhere as part of what the designer sees as an ever-ongoing show – presumably somewhere still out there on the streets of London.
It’s a clever (if not quite heart-breaking) narrative. A label built on a different kind of longing. But the latest collection was certainly among the standouts of the Generation Next catwalk space, where the newest names show during SFW throughout the week. Tulle skirts, chains, and bows made for a punk-whimsical take on this mysterious yet doomed fashion journey. But one Park seems intent on using to positive effect as the label progresses.