What is the epitome of Kim Sungil styling?
I have a styling principle: I would stay focused 30% on top and 70% on bottom. It’s a trick to make the legs look longer.
What is the most important point in your styling?
Balance! Regardless of colours or materials, balancing is always crucial.
What is his favourite fashion style?
A combination between classic and modern. Classic items look always appropriate with whatever they are matched. Pearl necklaces, white shirts, ruffle blouses, tweed jackets, these are all classic items that should get along well with jeans. Modern elements would become more dignified when classic items were added. On the other side, classic items will bloom when combined with modern elements. These combinations create a unique semblance.
You’ve been particularly fond of projecting a romantic look. What’s the start of your attachment to that particular style?
When I was young, I read a cartoon called ‘The Rose of Versailles’. From the cartoon, I encountered classical styles of western wardrobe design. I fell so much in love with it. It was just so very beautiful. It may be the reason why I often choose blouses with frills and collars that covers the neck.
What are some of your most memorable projects?
Two movies I worked for as styling director: ‘A Moment to Remember’ (2004) and ‘Sayonara Itsuka’ (2010). These movies were blockbusters in romantic drama film category. I styled Sohn Yejin and Chung Woosung in ‘A Moment to Remember’. ‘Sayonara Itsuka’ was Miho Nakayama’s come back film, and was set in 1970s. I worked according to the director’s manual. He wished to portray the stars in 1970’s wardrobes that would still look gorgeous in the eyes of contemporary audiences.
For whom did you work for in the past?
Kim Namjoo for 15 years until now. I’ve also styled other iconic actresses and actors such as Lee Misuk, Yim Jiyeon whom I have worked for since photo shooting for her movie called Human Addiction, Cha Taehyun, Lee Hyori, Um Jung Hwa, Kim Heesun, Kim Sarang, Jeon Jihyun, Lee Youngae, Tang Wei, Nakayama Miho and etc.
Among Korean celebrities, who do you think are best dressers?
Lee Hyeyoung and Kim Namjoo. They have remarkable fashion sense and know well how to maintain balance.
What are the difficulties when you work with top stars for ad campaigns?
Each of them has his or her own personalities and characters. When styling them for a photo shoot, it requires a direction how to portray their images. In advertising, products are the subject matter. To which I should focus whether the product or the model is usually a critical decision. If I would bring up an image of the model more, the products may lose exposure. I should equally bring up the images of the model and the product at the same time. On the contrary, for fashion photographs, I would normally put more weight on the image of the model.
Could you show our readers an example?
I would give you an example for a photo shooting for electronics, a refrigerator for instance. The design of the product was very modern and beautiful, and the model had feminine features. I needed to create an eclectic style that would compromise both. That was my responsibility. A stylist is the one who instills the balance in the set.