They Cross the Generation Gap in High Style

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They Cross the Generation Gap in High Style

Where can a nostalgic 1970s throwback see present-day models strutting down the runway in sexy, skin-tight low-riders? One has to look no further than the latest joint fashion show of the Korean designers Park Ji-won and Kim Haeng-ja, which also explains the traffic congestion on the way to the Michelan Cherevill on Tuesday evening. Enthusiastic fans and fashion journalists swarmed the area to see what the mother-and-daughter team had prepared for their 2001 spring and summer collections. The venue was packed like a Monday morning subway car during rush hour; pushing and shoving were the only way to move through a sea of onlookers. Just about the time when agitated guests began to fidget in anticipation for the show to begin, music silenced the crowd.

Under the show's theme, "Hampton," a smooth jazz tune set the cool tone of the first stage, consisting of breezy, casual outfits. The models resembled go-go girls with their typically '70s pageboy hairstyles. Black fishnet stockings and red lipstick combined to produce a sexy, grown-up look. The duo's idea of up-and-coming fashion consisted of whimsical prints in vibrant red, mauve, green and violet. The second stage was a bit more dressy - accompanied by Duran Duran's "Girls on Film" and David Bowie's "Let's Dance" featuring the sultry voice of Grace Jones ?la '80s. Models were both pretty in punk and reminiscent of disco goddesses draped in diagonally cut dresses of brown and gold hues. Hot pants and tight skirts were perforated with metal studs and cinched with wide leather belts. Polka-dots, ruffles, python skin and glitters added a twist of punk here, a hint of romance there and thoroughly captivated the audience.

The crowds cheered this duo who have shown that they have no trouble in crossing generation gaps to create sensational garments under their brand name labels: Park Ji-won Collections and Attitude. The younger Ms. Park was the source of inspiration behind the carefree haute couture of Korea's nouveau riche, while her mother, Ms. Kim, added a more down-to-earth glamour that suggests an attitude of old money. At the end of the show, Ms. Park demurely waved to the appreciative crowd, wearing a see-through black dress designed by herself, while Ms. Kim humbly bowed from behind her gleaming dark sunglasses. Another terrible traffic jam will inevitably result when Park Ji-won and Kim Haeng-ja hold their next fashion show in 2001.

by Ines Cho

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