Even when people are fully transparent with who they are, it is difficult to describe the depth of their histories or personalities with words. But it’s easy with color. Part of this collection was inspired by people Gahee Lim has known, a way for her to work out who they were through this body of work. The more you uncover of a person, the more layers you add to their story.
The suit is something people wear to feel confident— almost like protection—which is why Lim thought it was the perfect contrast to show vulnerability. She is not trying to reinvent the suit. She was just looking at suiting in a totally unexpected way: as a means to showcase fragility.
Tulle fabric was perfect to depict fragility and transparency, almost like an architect’s blueprint. Creating a suit out of tulle was a challenge, like learning a different language. Ideas of transparency lead me to consider flexibility in color, opacity and thickness of the surface and fabric. Different layers suggest different fabric weights. One or two layers is like silk organza. If layers were added more, it became cotton twill. If layers were added more, it became heavy wool. Engineering became a big part of this collection, especially as the layers added up. While Lim loved pushing herself creatively for the theme, it was important that the suits still functioned as clothing.
First 6 month of this project was about making mistakes to learn what works and what doesn’t, especially with creating color gradients or combinations. But the ability to control the layers and how she arranged them allowed the liberty to pick the exact colors that she envisioned. People she has known, from former romantic interests to her mother, heavily inspired the final color combinations. She had never considered the complexities in such a tactile way before.