Wooyoungmi’s latest collection is a garden: ethereal shapes; hues of green, pink, and orange; and open folds like flowers in bloom. But the clothing is not overly effusive. It does not contain the ethos of landscape architect André Le Nôtre, the man who famously cultivated Versailles’s gardens in the 17th Century—his trim and perfectly angular hedges forming luminary shapes between swaths of concrete. Nor do they quite reflect the works of the English designer Capability Brown who crafted the landscapes of countless British estates 100 years later. His work—characterized by expansive lawns and drooping willows—not unlike scenes from the paintings of Nicolas Poussin (Arcadia, again, and again, and again).
Rather, in terms of gardens, Wooyoungmi’s AW16 collection shares much more in common with the oeuvre of Frederick Law Olmsted, the great mind behind New York City’s Central Park. No gesture out of place. No extraneous motions. Wild and yet undeniably intentional, toying with the unconscious, suggestive influences of texture, shape, and weight over plain aesthetics. It is with this eye for natural eclecticism that mother-daughter team Madame Woo and Katie Chung approach this collection—with open seams that bloom from the bottom of pant legs and the petal-soft textures of knitwear. Like the work of Olmsted, which has lasted into the modern age with effortless grace, this is fashion out-of-time, existing in that liminal space between civilization and wilderness.
All Clothing / Wooyoungmi
Photographer / Soji FujIi
Stylist / Andrej Skok
Makeup / Gemma Edhouse Smith @ LGA Management
Hair / Hollie Smith@ LGA Management