From Seoul to Paris: time-tested style

“A person falls in love the same way he or she falls down a staircase. It's an accident," — this is how we can describe our relationship with System Studios.

For the anniversary of the System Studios brand, we are talking about its new collection and why exactly it is our FW20 season favorite.

Fresh to the European fashion lover, System Studios celebrated its 30th anniversary in Paris with a new FW collection.

Until last year, they managed to remain incognito for most street style aesthetes of the old continent, focusing exclusively on the local market, under the wing of Hyundai. Yes, exactly that Hyundai, the one which glorified the Korean car industry among the world market.

Many megacorporations have their own small, usually designed for a narrower audience, brands-protégé. This is what System Studios has become. And although in Seoul their stores have been located in the prestigious Gangnam area for many years, in Europe you can still find out about them only from a close circle of people.

Chance and Luck: How We Found System Studios

While selecting brands, we stumbled upon a collection of the Korean brand in one of our Parisian partners' showrooms. After a question about the brand, we received an invitation to a private show, which we were thrilled about. It was a big surprise that a little-known Korean brand would give a feeling of absolute novelty.

Despite its success on social media, the brand's clothing continues to be a little-known alternative to European fashion houses, a true subtle oriental take on European trends.

'New Order' — British rock or the new coherence

The brand celebrated its anniversary with the release of a new fall-winter collection, proudly named 'New Order'. The name can be considered both a reference to the British rock legends of the late 1980s — the group of the same name, and a discourse on the theme of a new world order, the coming of which is predicted after the end of the pandemic. The post-apocalyptic surroundings of the lookbook may as well confirm the second assumption. On the other hand, a new order can also refer to a new reservation, and System Studios is famous for dramatic changes from season to season, from item to item, from order to order.

If you look at photos of the best streetwear looks at fashion weeks in London, Paris or Milan, it's hard not to notice that most of the fashionistas are now from Asia. This trend has been traced for almost a decade. The role of the 'fashion capital' of the world is smoothly shifting from the hands of the 'Big Four' to Tokyo and Seoul.

Aesthetics as a part of Korea's national identity

Previously, the Asian style could be presented in only two incarnations — it is either the haute couture and inaccessible cyberpunk from Yohji Yamamoto and its derivatives, or cheap knockoff of dubious quality.

Now 'Asian mania' has captured literally everyone: the 'middle class' of the fashion world has changed the base of their wardrobe from the Spanish Zara brand to the Japanese Uniqlo brand, and hundreds of publications for post-hipsters and skaters write 'about Korean brands that everyone should know'.

System Studios, in its turn, shows how traditional Asian motifs and forms are successfully assimilated into the European lifestyle. If the flashy 2000s paid tribute to the Italian 'hot' style, then the 2010s and the 2020s already are a time of rigor and classics, qualities inherent in Asian culture. 

'Quiet' luxury

This season is marked by especially neutral shades: gentle pastel colors do not distract from the fabric quality and a non-standard approach to each part of the collection.

Some pieces can be a good wardrobe base , while trench coats, skirts and weird-shaped blazers are the highlights that you can't take your eyes off.

The deconstruction of the classic beige trench coat is one of the main trends of fashion weeks, and System Studios originally changes the shape and cut of the coat, transforming it from a wardrobe 'classics' into a calling card. Without using neon fabrics and odious accessories, the brand manages to combine the classic ready-to-wear and the wow-effect of high fashion.

'Quiet' luxury, which is in a state of constant evolution and at the same time is frozen in the past. A fusion of wavering fashion and timeless classics, System Studios' new order is where fashion dilemmas co-exist.

If System Studios were a motion picture, it would be an arthouse film in the spirit of Trier.

As well as the Danish master's movies, the style of System Studios will not be understood by everyone, but those who get caught up with it, will fall in love for a long time. It's not hard to get attention with a Gucci print or LV bag, but the best part is to make passers-by and friends guess and elicit the 'origin' of your garments. Logomania and excessive diversity can make a person fashionable, but style is about something else. Therefore, if fast fashion shouts shrilly, then 'underground' aesthetes, including System Studios, whisper in your ear.

Search the entire FW20 collection here.

Photos: System Studios

Editor: Diana Remizovska