#MyKingly

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Created for
Smythson

If you too, for a large part of 2007 and maybe even a slice of 2008, spent most of your waking hours lusting after a canvas tote bag, then come in for a cuddle. We did it, comrade, we started the efficiency revolution! A canvas tote bag wasn’t just a canvas tote bag – it was a political statement (I had one that said ‘Puppies not Politics’), an inflatable magic pocket, a bottomless Mary Poppins/Hermione’s handbag that had undergone an Undetectable Extension Charm. There were months when I exclusively carried a tote bag, keys and coins jangling under various half-eaten Pret sandwiches, amongst acrylic paint tubes I picked up at the Uni shop. As a ‘flaneur’, it was a must-have item, because the point of it was that it collected evidence of an entire day’s worth of curiosity (knick-knacks).

Fast forward a decade, bag trends have come and gone, all the shapes and sizes. I now mysteriously have enough canvas tote bags to make soup from, but it still stands that none of my bags have proved as practical. I mean, have you tried shoving an aubergine into an Olympia Le Tan book clutch? (Actually, don’t say that on a date.) Enter Smythson, whose pale blue featherweight notebooks I have time and time again poured my heart, ideas and indecipherable scribbles onto, with the new Kingly Tote. The new butter-soft leather bag is an embodiment of their delicate yet resilient stationery, which comes in black or the legendary Nile Blue of the brand’s shopping bags. Stop, drop and roll it up, stick a loaf of bread in there next to your gym clothes (microwave pizza for me), whip it out when the airline nags your about excess luggage weight. Viva la revolucion!

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Acrylic paint
Galeria



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Artist at heart
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Four years of art school will teach you a thing or two about transporting odd-shaped/sized books and equipment but at the end of the day nothing works better than a sturdy tote.

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Top – Jaeha. Skirt – Celine
Kid
at
Heart
I don’t know this (yet?), but I’ve been told by reliable sources (i.e most friends on my Facebook wall) that the Kingly makes a stellar mum bag. To keep mum things, apparently, like snacks and broomsticks if you’re Korean. I kid.

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Coat – Joseph. Shoes – Yuul Yie

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Coat – Emma Charles. Shoes – Yuul Yie

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Dress – Exhibit. Trousers – Joseph. Tote – Smythson Kingly. Heels – Celine.

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Top – Finery. Leather trousers – YearOne- (Similar)
#MyKingly
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Market smarts
Layer a bunch of anemones on top of a freshly baked bread loaf from Pavilion, and finish with a light sprinkling of change. Bacon butty optional.

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art & creative direction SHINI PARK
assistant photographer SIMON SCHMIDT in collaboration with SMYTHSON

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Brussels by foot, nose and waffles
Discovering Elixir, the new Flower by Kenzo

There must be some kind of a grand plan to have me familiarize with the city of Brussels through briefest of stints, using – quite exclusively – my olfactory senses. It’s like one of those memory games where a card flashes a part of a photo and with every card you have to do your best to figure out the larger picture – in my case, the Brussels I know consists of: the pungent aroma of a sack of cocoa beans (with a chocolate factory attached to the end of it), the whiff of cinnamon sugar on my very genuine Belgian waffles*, and a fruity, sweet note of Elixir – the new Flower by Kenzo perfume – a note that graduates into a scent bathed in rose, and ends with a tinge of bourbon vanilla.

A couple of us girls arrived via Eurostar on a snug Autumn morning, and weaved our way through the city towards the launch of the fragrance at MAD (Mode and Design) Brussels, curated by artist Jean-François d’Or. The exhibition is a play on words and a performance of scent. A little trivia would reveal, that ‘Coquelicot’, or French for the word poppy, was oft written coquelicoq – where Coq means rooster. As a tribute, the most notable installation – Le chant du coquelicot (the song of the poppy) – fanned golden leaves into the air, every time the sun rose in the world. The campaign is a nod to the power of flower and celebration of peace and justice. By the dawn in Panama City, we shuffled out to catch the train home, pockets full of silk poppies doused in Elixir, leaving golden leaves dancing in our wake.

In collaboration with Kenzo

*contrary to doughy wannabe’s on Oxford Street (aka Does sir know the Heimlich Maneuver), the original proves to be quite fluffy in texture, and therefore makes sense to inhale with a layer of melted chocolate, and ask for seconds at the next block.

Coat – Versus. Leather trousers – ASOS. Bag – Celine. Top – Zara. Boots – Acne

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Sunnies – Celine via SmartBuyGlasses. Watch – Larsson & Jennings. Envelope clutch – Sezane. Wallet – Prada. Serum – Innisfree. Necklace – Louis Vuitton. Scarf – MiH.

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Top – Paule Ka. Culotes – Charlie May. Bag – Marni. Sunnies – Celine via SmartBuyGlasses.

Current location: Seoul, South Korea. Time-zone: Galaxy far far away, corner of Asgard and one stop before Uranus. My body does not comprehend the blue tint of dusk creeping through the blinds at the wee hours of the morning and sends out confusing bodily signals including but not limited to: hunger, a need-to-pee, PMS, utter exhaustion and insomnia (at the same time), and demands that I do something about it. In return, I do what I usually do when faced with jetlag: eat something questionable out of my Airbnb host’s fridge, entangle self within a duvet and find a TV shopping channel sufficiently entertaining enough to sap the last of energy. The effect is sublime – I arrived on Thursday and woke up on Monday morning ,feeling brand spankin’ new.

Problem is, I still don’t know what time it is. Imma go pee.

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Hello, I’m here to fix your boiler…

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I am a strong believer that when it comes to cities, especially of those ‘home’ variety for individuals who – like me – have confusing heritage, it’s all about spicing things up in the bedroom, so to speak. And for this I wholeheartedly recommend roleplaying: sexy nurse, keen repairman, bored prison guard… whatever floats your boat (enthusiastic Pokémon trainer for me), but the trick is to live, experience and interact with your city from a slightly different perspective, different lifestyle. Rent an inexpensive car for a few days instead of taking public transport, wear a suit every day for no reason, shop like a local, walk like a tourist, book an Airbnb flat in a high-rise and wake up to sunrise on the 20th floor… Enjoy wider horizons but also encounter new limitations. Yes I’m aware this sounds like a page out of a self-help book, but I promise, IT’S SEXY WHEN YOU’RE DOING IT RIGHT. I’d like to think that this is how London and I keep a healthy relationship, even if I have to ask for a hall pass every now and again.

Seoul, for me, is one of those ‘home’ cities – despite never having lived there and a place I still consider an exciting, unmapped territory, I can’t help that on the rare occasion I do visit I slink into an oddly familiar routine that one would typically expect from a local. Now, this isn’t to say that I know my way around the back streets of Gangnam or the best way to haggle over a kilo of spinach with the lady in the market (why does one need kilo of spinach anyway), but it is the inevitable nature of: I seem to blend in with my own people? Last April, brought over by work, I was determined to spice it up – and instead of going straight to one of my relatives, booked two nights at the Conrad hotel on Yeuido island – the city’s business and banking district and also home to the most spectacular cherry blossom festival.

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Bag – Celine. Shoes – Aquazzura ‘Christy’

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Watch – Larsson & Jennings ‘Saxon’. Necklace – Effra London

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The hotel, while stunning in design and efficient in service, is undeniably oriented towards business purposes, which is exactly what I’d wanted. I woke up early and mingled with the suited men at breakfast, read the cartoon page off the International New York Times with my glasses perched low on my nose, and abused the concierge app to book wake-up calls but snoozed through the morning. In the afternoon, I took walks through the cherry blossom festival and bought street food, which I smuggled back into my room. And on the last day, I took a friend and snuck into a local public school’s sports field and we spent the afternoon on the bleachers imagining life as a Korean high-schooler. It was love rekindled, and so far away from the Seoul that I got too easily accustomed to. Next time, I’m booking a helicopter ride and borrowing a dog. Now tell me that’s not some power couple’s therapy.

A big thank you to Conrad Seoul for the kind hospitality.

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Sweater – Isabel Marant. Trunk bag – Marni. Denim culottes – Charlie May. Heels – Gianvito Rossi

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The dark knight blossoms

When it comes to flower print anything I can’t help but see sad little faces on the petals and leaves dreading the slow, yet inevitable death courtesy of the blackest thumb of all land and time: mine. This is probably the reason why the new Kris Knight update of the Gucci Flora got me hooked in the first place, because if you look closely, underneath the sugar-sweet pastel canvas of the Resort 2015 collection, there is a shadow, and a bed of botanicals that blossom in the dark. Curious little herbs with tough roots and long vines that cast roofs over eight-legged creatures… there’s almost a rock’n’roll attitude in it all. The irony is sweet.

It’s begging for exploration, which is exactly what I wanted to do in this collaboration with Gucci’s hero holiday gifts.

In collaboation with Gucci. Photography: Shini Park & Brian Leavy.
Art Direction & Graphic Design: Shini Park

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“My colour palette is inspired by the fact that I grew up in a bakery. I began tinting icing long before tinting paint…”
- Kris Knight

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Jumpsuit – Next

Dress – Alexander mcQueen. Heels – Celine. Both via Harvey Nichols

And by the way, florals? For Christmas? Amusing, if not actually ground-breaking.

Shop the gift guide

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Top – J W Anderson via Harvey Nichols | similar at Gucci. Suede skirt – Vintage (similar). Boots – Zara.

Flora Knight: the story

I love this video by Gucci, in conversation with Kris Knight on the story behind the Flora Knight blossoms. There’s something wildly satisfactory about seeing cake-icing pastel colours being used for painting. It takes a stronger man to resist temptation to shovel in a finger-full of paint while filling in a yellow dandelion.

Watch here

White trousers
Gucci

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In collaboation with Gucci. Photography: Shini Park & Brian Leavy. Art Direction & Graphic Design: Shini Park