Photographed by Jongha Park
A Lurex affiliate capote the blush of gunmetal is taped by the close to a makeshift accouterment rack. Bajowoo, the Korean jailbait artisan of 99%IS-, approaches it, lifts the hem to audit its weft, again lets apart a can of hot blush aerosol paint. He stands aback to appraise his work, again alcove for addition brazier on the floor—blue, again red, again white streaks are fatigued beyond the allotment at random, until he stands aback and smiles, satisfied.
We are actuality in the basement of Boon the Shop, the high-end abstraction abundance in Seoul area his ablaze Spring 2018 appearance will booty abode the abutting day. Unlike the building’s arty white marble exterior, advised by artisan Peter Marino, Boon’s basement arcade amplitude is all caked accurate and amateurish pillars, added in band with Bajowoo’s aweless accouterment line. Yet the accurate choice amid this raw automated amplitude and the apish bazaar aloft it matches the different position he now finds himself in.
In the accomplished year, he has feted collaborations with a bulk of brands (Faith Connexion, Camper, Alpha Industries) and met with tastemakers like A$AP Rocky and Vogue’s December awning brilliant Pharrell Williams, who wore a custom brindled apricot covering anorak to aftermost week’s ComplexCon. To capitalize on his ascent all-around contour and booty 99%IS- to the abutting level, Bajowoo has absitively to embrace article new. Rather than the apparent estimation of jailbait dress codes that has authentic his assignment until now, he has distilled that alienated spirit and reinterpreted it in beginning silhouettes and new fabrics that added acutely advertise his couture-level techniques. “If I go to Paris and admission article like this,” he says, bouncing at racks of abbreviate anoraks and channelled parachute pants, “they’ll say, ‘Oh, Bajowoo afflicted aggregate aloof because he’s in Paris.’ I had to do this now.”
The lookbook additionally reflects the change of his brand, characterized by a destructive adorableness that counters all expectations. It is not dark, raucous, or in your face. Instead, it conjures a serene image—of dawn, afterwards a night of falling rain. Adjoin a cellophane tarp, columnist Jongha Park and stylist Masahiro Nakajima assignment with Bajowoo to assemble a abstract alternation of angry portraits that somehow administer to aback lightness.
On set, Bajowoo is in acceptable spirits, cutting a affiliate fauxhawk cap, its red and dejected yarn strands flopping about as he moves. Beside a table blowzy with bottles of Chilsung cider and cans of algid aperitive espresso, It babe Kozue Akimoto patiently waits for her about-face with Katsuya Kamo, the Japanese beard and architecture artisan accepted for his surreal assignment with Junya Watanabe and Jun Takahashi at Undercover. He is agilely alive abroad on archetypal Soyoung Kang, whose beard has been slicked aback at the root, again teased into a cloud, while dejected beaming tube lighting has been captivated about her eyes and scalp. It is an baggy allotment of conflicting carve beat by several macho models, as well.
A bright gel has been anointed abundantly beyond foreheads and cheeks—not, as was the case at Hood By Air’s Spring 2017 show, with absolute animal undertones. Here, it catches the ablaze in a appealing way, like morning dew bathrobe cheekbones. Paired with bound holographic shirts and irised snakeskin sweatpants, it feels like a adroit axis from what’s appear afore that, adjoin the odds, still expresses the 99%IS- spirit. For Bajowoo, this about-face archive accustomed ground. “That’s what they said aftermost time, back I aback went for added blush instead of all black: why would you change it back bodies admired it the way it was?” he says. “But if it stays accurate to me, it works—they’ll appear about to this, too.”