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Korean tailor makes suits for Hollywood movies

Posted September. 07, 2021 08:00,   

Updated September. 07, 2021 08:00


In the movie “The Batman,” Bruce Wayne and the villains change suits several times. In another movie “Spencer,” which has been presented in competition at the 78th Venice Film Festival, Jack Farthing, who plays Prince Charles, wears formal British suits. One might think that it is an old white tailor, who made the suits in these movies. Contrary to the expectations, it is a young Korean man, who made the suits. He is Kim Dong-hyun, 32, who recently returned to Korea after working as a tailor in London. He made five suits for “The Batman” and three for “Spencer.”

In a phone interview with The Dong-A Ilbo on Sunday, Kim said he is proud of himself as a Korean, thinking that the world will see traditional British suits made by Korean. Kim worked as a tailor on the Savile Row in London for three years until Mar. The street is where the tailor shop from the movie “Kingman” is located, and is visited by upper-class people, such as British royal family. World-renowned designer Alexander McQueen also worked as an intern there to build his career. Kim was the only Korean tailor on the Savile Row, which called the “sacred place for custom suits.” He learned the techniques while working at a tailor shop affiliated to the Savile Row Bespoke Association. Only tailor shops with strict needlework standard that adhere to the traditional British suit-making method can be a member of the association.

Kim left for London in 2014. At that time, he was majoring in clothing design at a local university and felt skeptical about the fashion industry, which was sensitive to trends, and classes focused on women’s clothing. “I pondered about clothing that would not be swayed by trends and would shine more as time passed. I finally came to the conclusion that British suits fit the bill. I wanted to learn the proper techniques in the home of suits,” Kim said.

“I think good clothes are the ones that shine more as you wear them and that fit you well,” Kim said. “I want to apply traditional British tailoring technique, which feels more elegant as time goes on, to clothes and introduce them to Korea.” Kim said his ultimate dream is to return to the UK after building more skills in Korea and have British people wear British suits made by Korean, adding he will keep working hard until it becomes a dream for everyone to have clothes made by him.

Hyo-Ju Son hjson@donga.com