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A Face Like Mine

1 year ago by

A Face Like Mine

Diversity is a tough one. Within the fashion industry and out. There’s the runway race issue or the cultural appropriation style issue, and the list goes on and on. I like to think optimistically, but its hard to not get frustrated when it feels like some issues are on repeat.

This week there has been a lot of attention payed to Seoul fashion week and I mean full coverage: the shows, the street style, the K Pop stars, and beyond all, the incredibly dressed children. Korean designers, artists, and style are gaining more exposure of course with the help of the country’s powerful and popular pop culture presence. I particularly like the hints of Korean traditional patterns under the leather jackets of the editors.

But today I flipped through W Magazines collection of images called, “Meet The Beautiful People of Seoul Fashion Week.” All I could think was haven’t there always been beautiful Korean people at fashion week?

So that’s where the dichotomy of my feelings begin. On one end as a Korean I’m incredibly excited to see so many Asian faces within the industry getting the attention they deserve. Then on the other hand its hard when pieces like those make it sound like they stumbled onto a new movement.

Does anyone else feel the same frustrations? Are there any other issues that you feel torn about because of the positive and negative aspects?

– By Nicole, Intern at StudioDoré

15 comments

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  • I completely understand what you mean! I’m also Korean, and I am both excited and somewhat unnerved by the current “trendiness” of certain aspects of Korean culture. While I love that our country is getting the distinct attention I believe that it deserves and is no longer being grouped in with or being overshadowed by our larger East Asian neighbors, I also can’t help but wonder what it means for a culture to be trendy. By definition, don’t fads pass? Moreover, as you said, there exists a troubling undercurrent of this idea of “discovery” by the West. I also am concerned by the relatively superficial nature of the interest in our country. I can only hope that this newfound attention will serve as a gateway for further engagement with the Korean culture.

  • seoul and tokyo are so coooool! :)

    http://littleaesthete.com/

  • I totally feel your frustration, I am black African and I so done with safari editorial, as if that is all that is cool about Africa. Let not get on the look of black models on some major runways like black people don’t buy couture.
    I feel hopeless sometimes.

    http://www.distinguisheddiva.com/2016/03/medusa-laser-cut-mirror-greek-souvenir.html

  • I am very petite and I feel frustrated because people are always concentrating on the fact that the fashion industry is not making clothes for women who have more a full figure, but not about the fact that they don’t make clothes for women like me who are so petite that I’ve cried in dressing rooms because everything was too big.

    http://hashtagliz.com

  • I’ve definitely noticed the “trendiness” of Korea lately. First it was sheet masks and then the entire skincare routine. Then G Dragon and CL in Vogue, and now this apparently. I don’t really know how to feel about Korea being the latest and greatest trend though. It’s kind of weird, since all of this stuff has been around for years, and I remember first getting into Kpop and Korean skincare almost ten years ago! And as you said, there’s always been beautiful Koreans at the fashion shows, so why make a big deal now?

  • History is full of such weird moments.:) We know that America was discovered. But didn’t it exist before that? :)

    Being from a small country (Estonia) I am used to the fact that nobody knows about us and when they get to know something they are surprised. And I often have to explain a lot of stuff (and a lot of misunderstandings) to people from other countries. But I guess that’s just how it is. Small places will forever stay an unknown land for the majority of people in the world.

    On an individual level nothing really exists before we discover it ourselves, right? It’s quite philosophical and depends on how we want to or are able to see things.

    https://sofaundermapletree.wordpress.com

  • Etrange que tu abordes ce sujet justement aujourd’hui. Dans mon dernier article je parle des rondeurs dans la mode, et comment je milite pour la diversité des morphologies sur les podiums. Mais à la fois je n’accepte pas les rondeurs sur mon corps. http://www.elenuki.com/mes-complexes-mes-contradictions

  • Great post!

    I agree with you.
    Love to see Korea take a stand and own their spotlight at the moment. Hope thy don’t ‘sell out’. By that I mean aim to please the masses when the reason they are so popular right now is that they do what works FOR THEM and not just to sell sell sell.
    The same needs to happen for the Afro style/ movement. It is happening.I am here for it!

  • Agreed. Cultural discovery is a floodgate of the good, the bad and the ugly. Appropriation is a spectrum and attribution, respect and thoughtfulness / mindfulness are where it’s at. I know white and light skinned wealthy people roll their eyes at this concept but this is the early stages of true enlightenment, to listen to voices previously and systematically dismissed. I also detest how race and culture dialog only literally means “black” & “white”, as if there are not very poor exploited and oppressed people across the melanin color wheel. But I digress. Anyway, your feelings are valid and true, and many of us are here feeling the same way.

  • jessica March, 31 2016, 3:01

    I agree, I think in the US there’s this unhealthy divide based on color, which misses a lot of things that might make the dialog on race more productive, and inclusive for all. Even though racism is found everywhere, I think the US does is the only country that divides its people into what kind of “american” they are (white or black). Also the US has appropriated the word American seeing as anyone born in the western hemisphere is an american…

    In regard to the post, as I said in a previous one about the oscars, I think that all minorities stories and values should be brought to the forth to educate us all and enriched our lives. Something I think your comment Nicole highlights is that it’s annoying to see how things that exist “elsewhere” and have great intrinsic value are not deemed important until it attracts the attention of mainstream media, which is basically based on white western values. So it seems like only until we get that approval our heritage were non-existent. What I’ve come to learn is that mainstream media acknowledges what makes them money, so what is recognized or not by it is not that important to begin with, as long as there is space for diversity to be heard through different mediums.

  • Nice post ;)

    ______________________
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  • Gosh! This is the most respectful, reflective comments section I’ve ever read on racial/cultural issues.

    Living in Toronto, I’m actually always struck by how fashionable many Asian women on campuses are (especially the one’s studying as foreign students. I find the Canadian-raised ones are not usually as fashionable as their Asian-born/raised counterparts). But the Asian-born women don’t seem to get enough credit for how well put-together their outfits are because it’s just kind of expected of them! It’s weird.

  • Jane . B. Root April, 3 2016, 3:51 / Reply

    J’aimerais bien voir des filles représentatives de l’espèce humaine érigées en modèles. Et pas des squelettes rachitiques en guise de cintres. Mais c’est un vieux sujet …
    Article interessant ici : http://www.tendances-de-mode.com/2016/03/30/3570-chronique-68-instagram-et-image-de-soi

    Et en effet, des filles comme Candice Huffine ont plus à nous dire et à dire à nos filles que des déjantées toxico qu’on a érigées en super modèles. Attendez d’avoir des enfants et vous comprendrez …

  • Oui c’est clair, il n’y a qu’un seul modèle de fille : une reproduction de Kate Moss depuis 20 ans maintenant, c0est complètement incroyable. Etre super jeune, blanche, maigre, faire la gueule, être blasée… Et si n’importe qui d’autre ne ressemblant pas à ce profil sort du lot, on trouve ça extraordinaire. C’est très lassant, j’ai hâte qu’on revienne proche du réel, c’est à dire tout format de corps, tout type de visages, toutes couleurs, tous âges, etc. Ca serait une vraie libération !

  • Manon B April, 5 2016, 12:22 / Reply

    The only fact the it’s qualified as a “movement” is strange in itself :) !
    Why would well dressed Asian people be a movement ?! So strange

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