Changes

There do need to be some changes in my life. I mean doing things I actually love. Simply put, doing less of the meaningless things and more of what I find meaning in. 


Right after diving into the Mediterranean Sea!

I used to think ‘changes’ meant transforming my environment. Getting rid of exterior things like people that didn’t really serve much purpose to me(ouch), looking for a better job, transforming the way I look. But I came to realize that those things, although they may help, can only be refreshing for a certain period of time. What’s really mind-changing, life-changing, is people and love and passion. 

I always loved stories. Especially stories of people. I loved to be able to place myself in someone else’s shoes for even a little while, and it would give me an exciting sense of liberation that nothing else in the world could offer. I was more interested in the decisions people made throughout their lives and what events influenced them to make those decisions, rather than the things that they owned as a result of those decisions. Stories are a continuous process, not a result. 

However I am sometimes blinded by expectations. In my life, people have always expected a lot from me. I also always expected a lot from myself. I expected a lot of success, a lot of money, a lot of experience, and a lot of love. I could feel my own greed outgrowing my skin, as I struggled between school, jobs, trips, friends, the social scene, family issues, lovers, and more jobs. I needed the crazy nights as much as I needed the part time jobs, and I couldn’t let go of school but I did still want to do my own projects outside of the restricting boundaries of a school curriculum. Although it took time to admit it was a sort of abusion, I now definitely see that it was an unhealthy process of self-harm.

Me dancing with a completely random dude at a boat party.

However I am sometimes blinded by expectations. In my life, people have always expected a lot from me. I also always expected a lot from myself. I expected a lot of success, a lot of money, a lot of experience, and a lot of love. I could feel my own greed outgrowing my skin, as I struggled between school, jobs, trips, friends, the social scene, family issues, lovers, and more jobs. I needed the crazy nights as much as I needed the part time jobs, and I couldn’t let go of school but I did still want to do my own projects outside of the restricting boundaries of a school curriculum. Although it took time to admit it was a sort of abusion, I now definitely see that it was an unhealthy process of self-harm.

Ibiza taught me about happiness. For most of my recent years, I was on a quest to be as superior as I could. Better grades, better looks, a better paycheck. But Ibiza truly liberated me. I remember one of the waiters in a restaurant in Coco Beach referring to us as ‘friend’, laughing with us and trying his best to communicate to us using a language that he wasn’t even obligated to use. Cashiers paying us extra compliments even though they got nothing out of it. People at clubs, on the beach, taking the time to simply make conversation just for the sake of it. ‘Where do they get the energy?’ I thought. As a student with many jobs in Seoul, I never had the spare energy to look around or even care about my surroundings. It was hard enough trying to take care of myself, but now I think, ‘What for?’ If I’m miserable at the end of the day, when will I ever be successful enough to make myself happy?

Coco Beach, Ibiza. The food was great but the waiters were pure gold.

Humor, humility, and sincerity are all things that I overlooked because I was too proud to admit to myself that I was not the superwoman I once dreamed of being. I was afraid to let go of that extra job, and it killed me inside to fail another class because I was forcing myself to multitask day and night. Eventually everything became stressful, even the things I love. 

Bora Bora, Ibiza.

Now I carry the spirit of Ibiza in my heart. I know that the fun-loving, energetic girl is inside me somewhere. I need to make sure her voice isn’t muffled by the noise of daily life. This means doing more of what I love; less of what I don’t actually give a — about from the bottom of my heart. It means I need to slow down, and not beat myself up whenever I realize that even I can’t do five things at once. I need to love myself more, and know how to make fun of myself but also be my own best fan at the same time.

What I’ve been up to

It’s great to be back.

There are certain periods in people’s lives where they realize that they are powerful, or weak, deserving, or under-qualified. Maybe there comes a time when you make your first ‘big break’, or your second and third, and maybe it all becomes boring. There will also be months where you feel beaten down, and nothing seems to be in place and no one is worth your trust.

I feel like I’ve been through a couple of phases during the two years I’ve been away from blogging. Some ups and downs, some triumphs and losses. More realizations and new beginnings.

I’ve closed some doors – I learned that maybe I’m not in the place to be a research assistant for neither Korean Hanbok nor negotiation studies. Recently I’m also coming to the conclusion that I’m not interested in making my own clothes, either. I’d rather draw, create images, or curate looks. After all, I’ve always been in love with the editorial side of art rather than the actual creation process. Some new doors have opened too – I’m working to plan and curate parties here in Seoul! It’s going great, I’m working with a great team and the best venues (will post more about this soon).

I’m not much of a past-dweller, but I feel like whenever life confuses me I go back to my roots and my young self. I need to remind myself once in a while that I am naturally OK. Innately strong and passionate, and good, and fierce. I recall stories of me as a kid, fearless and always up for a challenge. They say the most important thing for anyone is believing in themselves, but it seems like it’s also the hardest thing.

I’m back because I realized that at the end of the day this is the outlet and platform where I’m most ME. I can let loose and still be good at it. I can stay up all night contacting brands or potential interviewees and write for hours yet actually stay happy. That’s the most important thing, right?

So yes, I’m back for good and I’m ready now to create even better stuff to share!

What it feels like to fail to get into university

Written by Anonymous Person

I have become a useless person.

 

Over a fortnight, I have become a useless person. The once promising spark in my eyes and my cheeks flushing with excitement are gone. I have been stripped of the pride that lived in the crimson walls of my living room that hold all my past awards, each delicately placed in their rightful spots by my hopeful parents, ghost achievements that now just make me cringe at the thought of what could and should have been.

 

IMG_4898

 

Last night, a moment before I went to sleep, I realized that I had become a useless person.

 

In fact, I am more than useless. I am like a parasite, spreading through the tissue of my parents’ backbones, sucking out the harvest of their dedication and trust.

It is already 1AM when I check my phone to see the time. My parents-

My ears perk up as I focus on the soft moans of my mother and the heavy sighs from my father in the middle of the night. Their pain is palpable; I can tell that I am causing it.

 

“Serves You Right.”

 

Her voice pierces through me like the sharpest dagger. Because, I know that it does. I can feel my walls of self-righteousness and years of anxious rationalization crumbling down to the floor we stand on, the same 5 square meters of floor that our family has been tiptoeing on for the past two years of my expensive education. They needed this, we needed this, more than I did.

 

I think meticulously. How can I make myself useful again? How am I going to earn back my self esteem? My mind is clinging on to the edge of my pride and desperation. When you knock yourself off your tightrope with one single blow, which way should you fall?

 

I am serving time for my sins; I repent, I free-fall for a while, and I try not to look up or down, because up is too high for me now and down is a future that feels deeper and scarier than before.

 

Laying on my bed,

“Jen, what would you do–I mean, think, if–if I failed to get into any of the colleges I applied to?”

“I’d think, ‘Oh. She got unlucky.'”

 ‘If you believe what you say, words become reality.’ – Ingrid Betancourt 

A.K.A. why I haven’t been around here for a while, guys

Fashion and Feminism

Hi readers,

Growing up, I’ve realized that a ‘feminist’ is not an easy thing to be. First of all, you have to put up with a ton of people that don’t even understand the modern implications of the term ‘feminism’. And then we have the skeptics that ‘don’t believe in’ feminism. Last but not least, we have the hypocrites that define themselves as ‘feminists’ but simultaneously cannot help but depend on traditional, biased gender roles. But it’s even harder to be a feminist while being a fashion geek at the same time.

Feminism, defined by the Google dictionary, is ‘the advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men’. Makes sense, huh? Equality, as in being given equal opportunities and rights, as in being given an equal, fair, starting ground.

feminism2

Fashion and feminism are two things that I’m most passionate about. They both have the inherent ability to empower women in a way that no other concept can. The two concepts are often compared and merged to achieve a contemporary understanding of look-ism and women. What is it in feminism that relates it to fashion? Does fashion have its roots in feminism?

Anyone who is remotely involved in fashion would know that Mary Quant, the owner of a boutique in London called Bazaar, officially introduced the miniskirt to the world during the 1960s. The 1960s were an era of revolution in a number of fields such as  philosophy, politics, religion, and fashion. People would challenge previously accepted social standards, and it was during this time that young girls would experiment with shorter skirts and different styles. The miniskirt gradually rose to fame and became popular. I guess you could say the miniskirt was a representation of the earliest form of feminism. It showed that women no longer had to be suppressed and have limited garment choices. Women could choose to show their own legs if they wanted to. 

But the thing is, feminism in fashion in today’s world takes a slightly different form to that of the 1960s. This is the era of Miley Cyrus, of Lady Gaga, and all the other ‘provocative’ artists. While explicitly putting your body on display was originally considered feminist, people are also voicing out their opinions from the other side of the viewpoint, that the oversexed culture is not feminist at all. People are starting to argue that wearing revealing clothes to get attention goes against the principle of feminism itself, since, in a way, it’s sexual commodification.

6a00e54f05e1bb8834010536c8099e970c-700wi

(image above: Mary Quant, creator of the miniskirt)

I’ve noticed that more and more people are turning against the 1960 miniskirt theory of feminism, and are extensively getting fed up of the oversexed media full of women that look like they just got out of the shower.

This shows that fashion isn’t just used for empowering women (by providing women with a basis to express themselves freely), it now has the counter effect of degrading women without them even knowing it. Of course, not all revealing garments can be branded as anti-feminist. It’s the premise or reason behind wearing(or more like, not wearing) them that determines whether a certain style of fashion is feminist or anti-feminist.

Don’t forget to comment, like, and follow! To comment or like, just click the title of this post, then scroll down. You’ll see the Like button and Comment box at the bottom of the post.

Image Credits: http://www.lasedna.com.ar/camila-moreno

A short story about writing, stories, and high school, told by a teenage fashion blogger.

The following excerpt is part of a story I’m writing. If it goes well, I’m hoping to publish it. Please, please, please leave comments below and give me some feedback-any honest thoughts will do, whether it’s praise or criticism or any random thought. Thank you. Do not copy any of the following content on this post without the permission of Konni Kim.

——————————————————————————————————————–

People don’t usually take me for the outgoing, opinionated type. I don’t think they reckon I have anything that interesting to say. Or maybe it’s because I’m not your typical crowd-pleaser type girl.

So I’m just going to shut up and write silently, while everyone else is beating each other up with their witty remarks and noses held high. I’ll just take them apart, one by one, little by little, word for word, until they realize I’ve been watching the whole time. It will hit them like a wrecking ball one day-that my watchful stare didn’t mean nothing. It meant I was observing, waiting for my time to come. They’ll learn that while they were feeling smug about being users and not ‘the used’, I was laughing along with them, but at something much funnier.

I’m using them all as props for my story. I’ll get paid for publishing. I’ll create the world. They’re merely puppets as far as I’m concerned. In my world, I can send them to Pluto or make them lick my feet. Who says reality has to dominate? What everyone wants is a story, whether it’s real or fake. We watch movies, we read, we tell historical tales. The media exaggerates and lies, and we’re forced to spin stories to tell on our college admission forms.

It’s the high school scene that craves for a story most longingly, in a brutal, unforgiving way. So many little cults with different ideologies, packed into tiny compartments where judgement awaits…

It’s pressure that creates the need for a story. Pressure from all angles-parents, peers, school, teachers… No wonder no one here can sit still for even a moment. Prep schools are the worst. Not any old story will do for the stuck-up cliques of prep school.

——————————————————————————————————————-

 

This post(the piece of writing above) is not necessarily based on myself, or my own experiences.