On Dec. 10, 2010 Nam was awarded first prize in creative field from the 6th Art to Wear Contest with her graduation work named Metamorphose.
The Art to Wear contest, co-hosted annually by the Shinsaege Department Store and Vogue Korea, is the largest fashion competition in Korea. It aims to discover new and promising designers for the fashion industry. This contest allows students to enter their graduation projects, and are scored according to the works’ material, form and detail. Those who are awarded the top prizes can have their works featured in Vogue magazine.
“It was an honor to be picked as one of the awardees. By looking at the pictures of work in the magazine I realized that I need to learn from other students in fashion design field,” Nam said.
Nam’s creation includes incorporating a unique material that was a popular last summer.
The freshness in material brought attention to her work and led her to gain a high grade in the creativity sector. “The idea of using a rubber slippers came in while I was wondering about the materials for the work,” Nam said. “I was walking by a local stationary store as usual, when my eyes caught sight of the white rubber slippers. I came with a question that ‘Could I turn this into something wearable?’”
Specifically, Metamorphose is composed of knotted fabrics and pieces cut out from the bottom of rubber slippers. “I wanted to break the fixed idea of the slippers. I wanted them to develop into something wearable, freeing itself from the foot. The rubber part of the slippers, which usually faces the road, has come to represent the uniqueness of a person’s bones,” Nam said.
Dealing with the rubber slippers Nam faced certain hardships. “As I started working on the project, it seemed more difficult to mold its shape than I thought. Also, the fear of the work not turning out as I wanted worried me very much.”
With a variety of background experiences, however, Nam successfully finished her work. “I have also participated in the Gangnam Fashion Rookie Contest, which I also had to prepare for a fashion show,” Nam added. “From contests, I learned a lot of valuable experience. And experience is what I think is most important.”
Before stepping into the real world of fashion from the relatively safe arms of Ewha, Nam believes that she could not work just to satisfy other people’s standards; rather, she wanted to challenge herself toward more creative ideas.
“As a student, I really enjoyed Ewha,” Nam said. “I especially remember the days I spent at school staying up days and nights with my friends preparing for the graduation show. I still cannot believe I have completed my graduation show.”
For the near future, Nam wishes to find her genuine vocation in her field and face other challenges working through other contests.