A live event was held in Seoul in conjunction with 150 cities around the world
By LEE YEON-SIL (Cherry)
A Halal Fashion Show was held in Dongdaemun on February 1st. This is the ‘K-FASHION and Modest Fashion Convergence and Marketing Seminar’. A live event was held in conjunction with 150 cities around the world. New York, London, Paris, Stockholm, Tokyo etc. which prepared for events. It was such a large event that the Governor of New York personally delivered a congratulatory speech. Most of Korea was not interested and the government was just watching. There was no support for this event. There were some people who were waiting to spoon-feed only when they saw some notable results.
Koreans need an open business mind and attitude that distinguishes between religion and industry. Korea is particularly exclusive and has misunderstandings about halal culture. Also, do not look at things with colored glasses or study with preconceived notions. Meanwhile, the halal market of more than 2 billion people and related industries worth more than 3,500 trillion won are being lost to other countries. Korea will inevitably fall further behind Japan and Taiwan in the future. It’s sad to see some enlightened businessmen taking a lonely path.
This is an opportunity to create a shopping paradise by attracting Muslim tourists to the Korean fashion market. It is also good to apply Islamic fashion to K-fashion to compete in good faith with Japanese kimono fashion. Japan is already doing well, producing results that are recognized by the world. Hanbok is popular in the halal culture and has high growth potential. The creation of a new fashion using Hanbok as daily wear can also attract attention.
Unlike developed countries, we still can’t even dream of receiving government subsidies. Various clothing entrepreneurs in Dongdaemun are making clothes, but they are very indifferent when it comes to planning or overseas marketing. As an example, look at London’s ‘Muslim Shopping Festival’. More than 200,000 people flock in an instant, and the economic benefits are hundreds of billions of won. In the case of Dongdaemun, isn’t there always a lot of talk and foreigners say, “There’s not much to buy?”
In particular, Japan and Sweden are making money with halal fashion designs and products. For the Japanese company Uniqlo, customers from the halal culture are the company’s biggest beneficiaries. In Korea, if an event related to Muslim clothing is held, people ask, “Isn’t that a religious event? Or what is it?”, “Why do we do something like that in Korea?”, “Could it be that they are doing it at the instigation of Islamic forces?” Some people say such pathetic things.
They have no idea or heard anything about what is going on overseas. These are people who live exclusively in their own world. All industries succeed when they properly understand each other’s religion or culture. You must learn about nearby Japan. Is Japan, which creates enormous wealth through halal fashion design, a Muslim country? They identify and study the demands of the global market and then produce results.
South Korea is in crisis both politically and economically. The middle class is collapsing, and this year is predicted to be even more difficult. It will be as painful as the financial crisis we have already experienced. Although the halal fashion market is very large, most people in their 60s or 70s operate sewing machines. Halal fashion talent is rare among young fashion designers in Korea. Recently, the performance of Samia, a young designer from Uzbekistan, stands out.
Dongdaemun is a place that symbolizes fashion. However, there are actually very few clothes that people in the halal culture can buy. The length of the skirt and pants are shorter, and the arm lengths are also different. The store is small and, above all, there are people who do not even have a basic understanding of halal fashion. Politicians and ministries only engage in various conflicts of interest. The fashion event in which 150 overseas cities compete fiercely is just watching the fire across the river.
Will Dongdaemun in Korea be able to maintain its reputation forever?
Modest fashion event, a look at society ㅡ
I hosted the Dongdaemun fashion event. Originally, we needed to find a professional MC, but they asked Cherry, who understands halal culture well, to host the event, so I did without realizing it. Even though I was asked to host in Korean, I finished the event by interpreting in English, which was difficult.
I received a comment saying, “She was a very calm and smooth host.” I was in a cold sweat inside. Unlike how I normally speak English in private, I felt burdened by holding a microphone and standing in front of many foreigners. I’ll have to pay more attention during the next event. The commercial officer from the Indonesian Embassy – who came to give a congratulatory speech – was also fluent in English.
I was shocked by the excellent English skills of the Indonesian female designers who came to this event. They are fluent in three basic languages, and it is right for them to live in a global era. I am concerned about the future of young people living in Korea. When you look at your peers abroad, you can compare them in several ways. Indonesia, a country that has everything, including oil, will become a powerful country in Southeast Asia in the future. It’s growing really fast.