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Redefining Korean Fashion: An Exclusive Interview with Kay Kim

Redefining Korean Fashion: An Exclusive Interview with Kay Kim

In the world of fashion, there are designers who create trends, and then there are designers who redefine entire cultures. Kay Kim, the renowned Haute Couture fashion designer, falls into the latter category. With a career spanning over three decades, Kim has not only made a name for herself in the fashion industry but has also pushed the boundaries of Asian & Korean fashion stereotypes to the global stage and audience.

From Haute Couture to K-pop costume creator & Hollywood Red Carpets

Photo: courtesy of Kay Kim

Kay Kim has become a household name in the fashion and entertainment industries. She has dressed influential figures from both the K-pop and Hollywood scenes, playing a pivotal role in shaping the global perception of Korean fashion. From crafting show-stopping costumes for SM Entertainment's Aespa's debut stage to curating red-carpet outfits for acclaimed stars like Lee Young-ae, Lee Hyo-ri, Kim Hee-sun, and Lee Ha-nee.

Asian Fashion: A Fusion of Cultures and Global Trends

Photo: courtesy of Sam Luck

As a visionary in the world of fashion, known for her ability to seamlessly blend Asian designs with western sensibilities. Kim explains, "There is a common misconception among people outside of Asia that our fashion is limited to traditional and oriental styles. However, we live in a modern world, and Asian fashion has evolved to be just as stylish, modern, and innovative as the garments coming out of Europe's fashion capitals." Through her work, Kim aims to highlight the global appeal of Asian designs while still supporting their unique perspectives. "My designs are all about creating stylish and global pieces with an Asian touch. While I don't consciously intend to incorporate 'Korean-ness' into my designs, I believe that my Korean identity and spirit naturally flow into my creations, adding an extra layer of depth and authenticity."

Embracing Individuality: Breaking Away the Norm


Photo: courtesy of Kay Kim

Kim's journey in the fashion industry hasn't been without its challenges. When she decided to pursue a career in fashion instead of following the traditional paths of law or medicine, she faced resistance from her family. However, she believed in following her passion and forging her own path. She tells, "Sometimes we are compelled to follow our own passions and forge our own paths. From an early age, I knew that designing clothes was my true calling. It was a risk, but it was my dream, and I will always be grateful to my past self for having the courage to take that step." Kim's decision to break away from stereotypes and embrace individuality has not only shaped her career but has also become a driving force behind her designs. Each garment is carefully crafted to make the wearer feel beautiful and happy, regardless of their background or personal style.

The Inspiration Behind Kay Kim’s Collection: Birds, Flowers, and Symbolism
Antonia Cruz Kay Kim Fashion Event

Photo: courtesy of Sam Luck

Kim's latest collection draws inspiration from the harmony found in nature. The collection explores the symbolism of birds and flowers and represents the love between men and women. Kim explains, "Nature perfectly captures the idealized relationship between men and women. Just like birds and flowers, they live together, benefit each other, and create a vibrant ecosystem. In my interpretation, this symbolism represents the beauty and interconnectedness of love." Throughout the collection, motifs of birds and flowers are intricately woven into the garments, creating a cohesive and visually stunning concept, that are not only stylish but also carry deeper meanings.

Catering to Diversity: Fashion for All

Photo: courtesy of Sam Luck

One of the remarkable aspects of Kim's designs is its ability to cater to people of all creeds, genders, cultures and ages. "Each person is unique, with their own background, style, and preferences. With my new collection, I have crafted each piece to be versatile, allowing it to be styled differently depending on the person wearing it." By embracing diversity, Kim's designs transcend boundaries and cater to a wide range of backgrounds and lifestyles.

Collaborations and Charitable Initiatives: Driving Sustainability and Empowerment

Photo: courtesy of Kay Kim

In addition to her remarkable achievements in the fashion industry, Kim has also been actively involved in impactful collaborations and charitable initiatives. Notably, she recently partnered with the Hyundai Motor Company to create sustainable clothing using upcycled car fabrics, showcasing her commitment to environmental responsibility.

Where to Buy Kay Kim's Designs

Photo: courtesy of Kay Kim

To acquire Kims exclusive designs, fashion enthusiasts can explore multiple avenues. Kay Kim's clothing can be bought at her highly anticipated expositions, held the day after her fashion shows in prominent fashion capitals like Paris, Tokyo, Hong Kong, and more. These expositions offer a firsthand experience of her latest creations, allowing customers to immerse themselves in her visionary world. Additionally, her main Atelier in Seoul serves as a hub for her unique designs, providing a direct connection to her artistic process. For those unable to attend expositions or visit the Atelier, select high-end boutiques and online platforms offer the opportunity to own a piece of Kay Kim's sought-after collection.

The Future of Kay Kim: Redefining Asian Korean Fashion Globally


Photo: courtesy of Kay Kim

As Kay Kim looks towards the future, she envisions her fashion brand continuing to redefine Asian Korean fashion on a global scale. She has upcoming projects and fashion presentations planned in Korea, New York, Japan, and Los Angeles, which will further expand her reach and highlight her work to a wider audience. Stay tuned for updates on her next show, set to take place in Tokyo, as she continues to shape the future of Asian Korean fashion with her bold vision and sustainable approach.

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