ONE CHOI by Choi Won

“I like math since they give you a clear answer. Not art since they cannot be numeralized,” said designer Choi Won. She studied pottery in Korea before she went to the UK where her graduation collection from Central St. Martin’s garnered attention from “The Guardian” as well as retailers such as Barneys New York and Colette.

Choi honed her skills as a knit designer at Alexander McQueen and Lanvin Korea, and in 2012 struck out on her own with a namesake brand. With elegance and comfort as the main concept, the entire collection is made in Italy, an unprecedented attempt for a Korean designer.

Made with a firm belief that it is a designer’s job to make people beautiful without trying too hard, her clothes create silhouettes that are unique to the person who wears them. They are no brainers that you would reach for whether you are going for a quick grocery shopping or for a night out that calls for a decent styling. In short, they confidently shout “YES” to a shopper’s question whether they would be worth every penny.

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The designer “wants to be in the dead center of practicality and artistry”, and fittingly her creations do not either preach piercing beauty or conform to the universal aesthetics. Instead she attends to what can easily be overseen. It is best quality and superb fitting that differentiate One Choi. That is why she crafts her line in Italy, one of the strictest places against fabrics and dye that could be harmful for humans.

“Those who have been through the phase of putting on things to show others recognize us, just as you learn to appreciate platonic love after a passionate phase of love”, states the designer with a flash of confidence and pride. And rightfully so. Buyers from the world over are coming to Choi who does not do much publicity or put on a runway show. She puts integrity at the front and her philosophy and perseverance are gradually putting a shine on her collection.

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. And her neat knitwear will live on with her clients who are beaming in front of the mirror.

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Do you remember the day of your first runway show?
September 2013, during Milan Fashion Week.
Why did you choose designer as a job?
I love everything handmade and am intrigued by studying body.
What joy do you get from being a designer?
When people put on my clothes and are pleased and happy; and when my designs take on attractive femininity. That’s rewarding.
 What do you think is fashion?
Enjoyment, something not serious, culture of the time, trend, and wit.
What is well-designed clothing?
What makes you good-looking (causing optical illusions).
How are the clients of One Choi special?
They love nature and are lyrical.
What is your signature design or item?
Whole garment design. An entire piece of clothing constructed in a single unit, (imagine a ceramic without seams).
What would you like to say about fabrics?
I prefer natural fabrics and keep the synthetics(nylon) less than five percent.
What inspires you when you work on your design?
The source of my inspiration is anti-narcissism. I am fascinated by the misconception, illusion and oblivion of humans.
What is on your mind when you design?
Not to solely purse what is cool. It will only plague you with pretense, deception and agony.
How would you like to be remembered as a designer?
A true dressmaker. I hope One Choi remains true to itself for a very long time, until the end of the world.
What have you achieved? Or what do you want to realize in the future?
Having my own brand and have it made entirely in Italy. And that there are those who appreciate the sophistication of my clothes.
What is your life’s motto?
Know yourself.
Describe designer Choi Won’s world of fashion in a single word.
Fairness.

WRITTEN BY: LEE SOWA (CONTRIBUTOR)

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