The main concept of Yoonki’s California inspired collection stemmed from the idea of a single garment being patchworked together, giving a classic shirt or jacket a new identity. What may look like a traditional jacket from afar, reveals numerous surprises once you get close enough to see its subtle deconstruction. More often than not inspired by photography, her menswear collection was influenced by Slim Aarons imagery, mixed with Miami Vice pool party vibes. As she flicks through her portfolio, I am presented with collaged images of men and women in fancy poolside dress, couples floating in water and general holiday snaps. The photography section in the CSM library was her favourite place to look for research, “When I see a photo, I’m not only drawn to the people and what they’re wearing but I’m also drawn to the mood, the moment forever captured by that frame. So, when I start a project the mood often comes from a photography series or book.”
The original inspiration of Hollywood pool party imagery was dissected down to the last detail to give Yoonki subtle ideas on cut and silhouette. Focusing on the movement of people in the pool and where the water meets their skin, she followed these lines in her images so she could then translate them onto the garment. She found cutting ideas in the way bathing suits sat on the body and explored the shapes created by shadows, light and tan lines on the skin. Yoonki used these natural shapes as the fundamentals of where to connect garments together and where to collage and place her fabric combinations.