Korean streetwear brand NotKnowing has already been worn by some of the biggest Korean artists and celebrities and has been described by Seoul Fashion Week director, Jeon Mi-Kyung, as “a favourite on the street style scene.”
So here’s what you need to know about NotKnowing – watch out for that tongue-twister…
The streetwear brand was one of 26 brands shown in SFW as part of the main programming, Seoul Collection, and was listed as a highlight show on the SFW website.
The FW21 collection is called ‘Stalemate’. For those of us who still call the Knight piece ‘the horse’ in chess, NotKnowing defines their title on the back of their ‘Knight Hotfix Collar Hood Zip Up.’According to the back of the oversized, two-toned hoodie, ‘Stalemate’ is “a situation in the game of chess where the player whose turn it is to move is not in check but has no legal moves.”
In other words, the game is in deadlock. The motifs and designs seen in the collection reflect the “concern’s of the current era’s deadlock,” according to the website. And while the brand has left the exact meaning of the statement ambiguous, I’m pretty sure that everyone could come up with their own variety of current “concerns” pretty quickly these days.
Each season the brand takes inspiration from a different sports concept for their collections, previous examples include Rock Climbing and Basket Ball (which you would be crazy to not check out). The confluence of strict rules observed in sport and a “street culture without rules” makes for provoking and versatile pieces. And although I didn’t realise that chess counted as a sport, after seeing the collection, I’m here for it.
The Chess theme runs through the collection with finesse and can be seen in the overwhelmingly black and white palette, checkered prints and chess motifs such as a diamanté ‘Knight’ on the back of their outwear. Looks range from relaxed, oversized daywear, reflective of the classic Korean street style, to more tailored evening looks.
Check out the entire collection on the NotKnowing website.