South Korean fashion brands have long defined their own styles and silhouettes differently from mainstream fashion. Where body fitting and exposed skin are common in the West, Korean brands/retailers make statements with oversized silhouettes, high-necklines, wide-legged pants, and most famously – camisole over tops.
The strong support for local trends from Asia, particularly China, combined with the internet hyper-connectivity and a robust wholesale hub based in Dongdaemun have provided the optimum breeding ground for private label brands and the retailers that promote these brands. Here, we analysed two of such multi-label retailers.
Top Korean Marketplaces
ÅLAND expanded its global footprint by opening the first store in the western hemisphere (Brooklyn, New York) last summer of 2018. Its affordable street styles came in a spread of free-size and gender neutral clothing. Known as Korea’s best-kept secret, ÅLAND was an exclusive hotspot for local fashion icons such as Irene Kim and Soo Joo Park, before it emerged on the public radar.
Somethin’ Sweet embodies feminine-centric Korean styles with K-pop inspired homegrown brands, donned by some of the biggest girl groups such as Twice, Blackpink and Red Velvet. The retailer is also one of the few Korean e-tailers that offer free worldwide shipping with minimum orders.