We had the pleasure of talking to BonBom @__bonbom, a Korean designer who presented its latest collection during Seoul Fashion Week 2022 and who tells us more about it, its influences, and a lot more!
Vanity Teen. Your brand is really unique. When did you start to create your own label, what made you do it and what approach to fashion would you say it has?
BonBom. We launched our brand in February 2020. Every season develops through the study of the definition and type of clothes themselves. To make creative and beautiful clothes, BonBom analyzes the restrictions and borders of particular clothes. The methodological part of design research that BonBom learned while studying in London was established through practical experience learned in Paris. He tries to create new shapes and beautiful details every season through numerous pattern cutting and fitting. The classic part and the sharp, defiant attitude were combined with couture and tailoring, an interest of the designer who had studied menswear but who continued to the womenswear label of late, creating unique tailoring. Especially, the dress in suit material using pleats impressed many fashion people. Chandeliers, lantern-skirt, and harness tops became signature items, and their gorgeous structure is also the biggest reason why K-pop idols who want intensity request stage costumes. Recently, we emphasize biker details to reinterpret and cement existing archives.
VT. The designs from your brand are referenced as “Sensual future wear. Hooker chic. Couture approaches.” Could you tell us more about why do you use these terms and what do they mean?
B. In this era when casual and streetwear are rampant, what I don’t want to forget is that I want to do ‘High fashion’, ‘Total Fashion’ which is making clothes with craftsmanship. Also, I don’t want to expand BONBOM’s archive that checks the co-payment fee first when I design the clothes, which can be made immediately by pattern makers without any additional explanations and understanding. I want to be a meaningful designer that is really necessary for Korea and for the future, thinking about the next generation and the enormous responsibility.
VT. What I am most curious about is the process followed to create such mesmerizing designs. What is your creative process like?
B. The influence of my father, a professor of anatomy, was easy and fun to learn about the characteristics of the human body from childhood. Naturally, as I encountered various physical characteristics of men and women with photos and materials, I designed to emphasize the structural curves and lines of the human body. In particular, the features of wide shoulders, slender waist, big shoulders and arm muscles, and protruding hips and calf muscles are integrated into the shape of clothes. Then, while studying “History of Western Fashion”, I became interested in clothes such as corsets, and I am creating unprecedented clothes by transforming them in a modern way without any inconvenience. The corset is applied to the hoodie, the essence of comfort and casualness, to create a different feeling and continuously create a body-consistent dress. As such, Bonbom’s design begins with inspiration that comes from feeling interested in something or learning new facts.
VT. If I am not mistaken you presented your latest collection during Seoul Fashion Week 2022 and the designs are incredible, with soft pink and earthy tones and jaw-dropping silhouettes. Can you tell us more about this collection and your experience at Seoul Fashion Week 22?
B. It’s more meaningful to be able to make my first fashion week debut at Seoul Fashion Week, which has changed from digital to offline in three years. I’ve released several collections so far, but it’s my first time on the runway, so I was excited, looking forward to BONBOM’s unique design philosophy and DNA containing craftsmanship aiming for Couture. Also, bonbom has the highlight of the collection. Printed fabric for Winter 22 designed by BONBOM has been upgraded to various patterns and colors complete with BONBOM Vintage Logo introduced in the Spring 22 collection. Khaki and baby pink tones are added, and existing prints are shown in a different mood than before. In particular, the collection includes denim vests, denim pants, fleece zip-ups, chandelier skirts, padded jackets, and sleeveless dresses are adorned with symmetrical patterns of the German character “B” commonly used in tattoos. BONBOM believes that the design makes their legacy richer.
VT. To conclude, I am sure you have a lot of ideas at the moment, so how do you see the evolution of your style and your brand?
B. Firstly, I am planning to apply for the 2022 ANDAM Awards in France. Taking this as a stepping stone. I am looking forward to disclosing our collection in Paris in the second half of this year. Also, regardless of the result of the awards, you will be able to meet BONBOM’s collection in Europe because BONBOM’s firm goal is to become an influential brand not only in Korea but also globally.
Secondly, bonbom is still in its infancy. We are growing up challenging ourselves. Bonbom’s signature look and details – chandelier skirt, corset hoodie, nipple piercing, and unique incision lines – are gathering one by one to complete the identity and DNA of bonbom. As I have always done, for the future of bonbom and for further growth, bonbom will consider and explore what fabric and design can show the identity of the brand.