Interview with Jewelry designers (Korea and Japan)

It was Day 2 at Seoul’s Fashion KODE, I found myself gazing at many of the jewelry pieces.  As some of you know, I started to learn how to make jewelry and I was very interested to talk with jewelry designers.  I wanted to ask about their experience and how they started their successful careers.  

One of designers with whom I spoke was Korean jewelry designer, Jae Woong Kim.   He had pieces that were quite beautiful.  His jewelry is for both women and men, and has become very popular for Korean celebrities.  I found him near his display, where he agreed to an impromptu interview. 

-What is your name? And tell us about yourself a bit!
My name is Jae Woong Kim, I am a jewelry designer in Korea. I was born in Korea and raised in the States.

-How long have you been in the States?
I was living 8 years in Manhattan.

-How did you start your business?
I started my business with clothing and after I got interested in jewelry.  I participated this year in “Project Runway Show 4.”

 -Wow, cool!  What is your inspiration?
I get inspiration from everything: people, pets, trees, flowers even more so.  There is no one thing that I am getting inspired by, mostly ideas from listening to classic music, arts, people who I like.

-Where from do you get material for your production?
Because Korean people love everything that is foreign, I buy material from New York City.

-How long has your brand existed?
Maybe a couple of months.

-What do you think about KODE event?
Well, it is my first experience showing my products to buyers. It is a good opportunity for me because a lot of buyers are interested in my production. So far, I have had a good experience with this event.

-Thank you so much and wish you good luck with your business!
Thank you.

If you are interested in jewelry by Bien Vêtu please visit /


After my interview with Jae Woong Kim, I had the chance to conduct another interview with Japanese shop manager, Aiko Ishigaki, who made the trip from Okinawa, Japan.   She was not a designer, but she represented the production of Joia de Lequio, handmade Ryukyu glass jewelry from Okinawa, a brilliant creation by Japanese designer Yoshino Inamine.  A translator helped me ask my questions.

-Hello, can you tell us a bit about production?
Each piece made of Ryukyu glass is by hand.  Ryukyu glass is often referred to as instantaneous art.  It came from Okinawa.  The glass is made by glass-blowing and every piece is very different in shape and size, which gives a unique taste.

-What is the inspiration to design these beautiful pieces?
-It is inspired by the nature of Okinawa and the sun of the times for two countries far apart from each other. The Ryukyu Kingdom and Portugal were in an active trade relationship.

-Do you represente your work in other countries?
Yes, this year we are in Korea.  We are happy that we can show our production to a fashionable country like Korea, and also in Singapore and Hong Kong.
-What do you think about Fashion KODE event?
It is good experience to come to another country and show our production.  It is a good experience to be able to work with the Korean Fashion Industry.

-Thank you so much.  Your pieces are so beautiful and very unique.
Thank you too.  Glad you like them.

For more info, please visit

After my second interview, I continued to enjoy the rest of the event.  I could not help by daydream of the nature of Okinawa and far away places.  Jae Woong Kim and Yoshino Inamine find inspiration in so many ways.  This experience turned out to be inspiration for myself!

Thanks for reading!