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Youngmin Lee and Steph Rue.

Last week I had the pleasure of attending the opening reception of From Fabric to Paper, an exhibit of works by bojagi artist Youngmin Lee and hanji artist Steph Rue at The Consulate General of the Republic of Korea in San Francisco.

 

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The two artists were recipients of the Alliance for California Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Program. This exhibit features both their individual work and the pieces they worked on together over the summer.

 

 

Bojagi is traditional Korean wrapping fabric and hanji is traditional Korean handmade paper. Ms. Rue says when she was in South Korea studying hanji she constantly saw bojagi, which is made of fabric scraps and used to wrap gifts, store things, and carry objects. Once something common and used every day, it has now become an art form. Intrigued, she wanted to learn more.

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Indigo Study. These are traditional pouches men would have carried in the Joseon Period (1392-1910) in Korea. These are made with mulberry paper, silk, and ramie fabric.

She says she was excited to have the opportunity to work with Ms. Lee, who is considered a master in bojagi making. With a degree in fashion design Ms. Lee came to the craft after moving here from South Korea more that twenty years ago. She says that living in another country moved her to the traditions of her own culture. Now, she shares her knowledge of, and passion for bojagi by teaching classes all over the Bay Area.

This is a lovely exhibit and well worth a visit to The Consulate General of the Republic of Korea in San Francisco, 3500 Clay St. @ Laurel. On now through December 27, 2019. Open hours are Monday-Friday 9-5. And it’s free.

On another related topic: today (October 9th) is Hangul Day in South Korea. Hangul is the Korean alphabet. Koreans celebrate their alphabet because at one time there was no written Korean language and only scholars could read and write Chinese characters. Hangul was created by King Sejong in the 1400s to allow everyone the opportunity to read and write in their own language.

Hangul Day is a national holiday in South Korea.

Happy Hangul Day!!

 

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Reconstructed woman’s hanbok (traditional Korean clothing) based on a 16th century garment. Ramie, polyester, and silk. From Couture Korea exhibit, San Francisco Asian Arts Museum 2017.

Traditional Korean clothing is imbued with many kinds of beauty: natural, understated, symbolic, elegant, and exotic. Of these, natural beauty is the most important. Since ancient times, Koreans have found pleasure and happiness in nature rather than in attempting to conquer nature, and this may be reflected in Korean fashion. As seen in its full-flowing and ample shapes and rhythmical curves, Korean clothing stresses comfort and natural style, unlike the closely fitting, structured silhouettes of its Western counterparts. 

Cho Hyo-sook – vice-president of Gachon University in South Korea.

This is a quote from Hyo-sook’s essay Clothing in Harmony with Nature, which I read in the catalogue for Couture Korea, the 2017 fashion exhibit at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco.

One year ago this month I traveled to Seoul, South Korea on a ten day textiles tour. What an adventure it was and still is as I continue to read and learn about Korean history and culture, in particular the traditional crafts.

I like Hyo-sook’s comment about the importance of nature reflected in traditional Korean clothing and the idea of enjoying nature instead of conquering it. I think we are now, with Climate Change, suffering from the results of decades of trying to control nature.

As I see natural beauty in Korean clothing, I also see control and restriction in western clothing or at least western clothing of the past such as tailored suits, fitted dresses, buttoned up shirts and ties, vests, and so on. Modern clothing is much less restrictive but the production of it is a major polluter to our sadly ailing earth.

 

 

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Gatsby Summer Afternoon at Dunsmuir Hellman Historic Estate.

Another Gatsby Summer Afternoon has come and gone. The 35th for the Art Deco Society of California and the very first for many attendees. This event is growing in popularity as more and more people want to experience the grace and elegance of the past.

Over 1000 enthusiasts gathered at the Dunsmuir Hellman Historic Estate in Oakland for a picture perfect sunny day of dressing up, dancing, picnicking, and meeting other like-minded people.

As a picnic site judge I don’t have much time for snapping photos but I managed some and here they are. Enjoy!

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Winners of the Best Grand Picnic Site.

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Winners of the Best Petite Picnic Site. Fifteen-year-old Brendan dressed himself and his parents. He’s been collecting all things vintage for four years and is currently taking Charleston dance classes, hoping to enter a future Gatsby Summer Afternoon Charleston contest. For his picnic, he baked ginger bread using a 1934 recipe, which was Walt Disney’s favorite.

Congratulations to all the contest winners and to the ADSC for another successful year. It’s a lot of work to put on this event. Thank you Event Chair Diana Brito, Heather Ripley Former Chair and Advisor, Heidi Schave, ADSC President and Advisor, and Marie Riccobene, Former Chair and Advisor. Thank you also to the ADSC board members and the dozens and dozens of volunteers who make the day possible.

Save the date for the next Gatsby Summer Afternoon, September 13, 2020 (always the second Sunday in September).

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A costume for Princess Margaret played by Vanessa Kirby in The Crown.  Hand-embroidered and beaded floral appliques with the unexpected pockets. 

The exhibition examines costumes from public and private moments depicted in the show … People are clearly captivated by the coronation robes and regalia, and they have enjoyed the wedding dresses – replicas of both Princess Elizabeth’s and Princess Margaret’s. But our visitor’s survey indicates that Princess Margaret’s hand-painted and beaded gown with the pockets is a strong favorite. 

Kim Collison – exhibitions manager at Winterthur Museum, Garden and Library in Delaware.

Ms. Collison is speaking to Victoria magazine of Costuming The Crown, the current exhibit on at Winterthur Museum, Garden and Library. On view are 40 costumes from the popular Netflix series, which fictionalizes the life of Queen Elizabeth II, Britain’s longest reigning monarch.

 

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Luxury accessories up for auction at Abell Auction.

 

As consumers consider what they buy, the idea of what’s sustainable (what isn’t harmful to the environment) is now on our check list. “Reduce, reuse, and recycle” has become a mantra, and according to the fashion resale website ThreadUP, there are more secondhand shoppers than ever before.

In keeping with this fashion movement, Abell Auction Co. located in Los Angeles is featuring a unique collection of vintage luxury accessories at its next auction set for September 10th, 2019. Todd Schireson, VP at Abell Auction, Co. was kind enough to answer some questions for OverDressedforLife.

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Todd Schireson

It seems how people shop is in the midst of a major shift, has the auction business been impacted? In what way? 

People are shopping and browsing sales more online these days. Because of the online marketplace, people tend to take shipping into account; large furniture being difficult to sell, while luxury goods, fine art, and jewelry is thriving.

Who is your (buying) client these days? 

We cater to dealers, designers, and decorators on the West Coast. Since the business has shifted more to online sales, we have buyers in every major city in the world.

What do you think it is that attracts a new audience to auctions? 

The idea of getting unique, vintage or historically important items is what brings people to auction.

In jewelry and accessories, what are your clients looking for? What brands? What kind of style? 

At Abell Auction, we have a wide range of consumers. The luxury items that tend to do well at auction are Hermes, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Rolex, Tiffany & Co., Patek Philippe, Cartier, Harry Winston, Montblanc, etc. Styles in jewelry change quite often, whereas with purses, the classic Chanel flap bag will always be a popular trend.

You have a sale of luxury accessories coming up – please briefly describe what will be offered. 

The luxury auction coming up has a great collection of watches from Rolex, Cartier, Patek Philippe, and Piaget. Handbags and other fashion items from Chanel, Hermes, Louis Vuitton, Pierre Cardin, Gucci and fine appointments by Lalique, Daum, Cartier, and Buccellati.

What are you most excited about with this sale? 

Luxury auctions bring in a different customer base than those who typically attend fine art and antique auctions. With the new customer base, there is not only opportunity to show them a Birkin bag, but to also showcase the amazing collection of Pablo Picasso pottery, David Hockney prints, and amazing original mid-century furniture, etc.

Thank you, Todd. Click here for more information on Abell’s upcoming auction. (Preview September 4-6 & 9).

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Yesh! Even fashion bloggers, who today will be putting away their whites for the season. Or maybe not.

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Toni Morrison chose to wear Kiss of the Wolf to accept the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Obama in 2012. 

You are your own stories … The theme you choose may change or simply elude you but being your own story means you can always choose the tone. It also means that you can invent the language to say who you are and what you mean.

Toni Morrison (1931-2019), American writer, Nobel prize winner for literature, Pulitzer prize winner for fiction.

This quote is from Ms. Morrison’s 2004 commencement speech at Wellesley College and can be applied to so many aspects of life, including personal style.

Toni Morrison, who died last week, carried herself with graceful intent. Her talent and wisdom will continue to uplift us for generations to come.

RIP.

 

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