As simple as it may sound, “street fashion” is a complex and contested concept, with a more layered and complex genealogy than its seemingly simple, colloquial usage in vernacular discourse might tend to belie. Commonly used and understood today, the term “street fashion” refers to the items of clothing that everyday people on the street wear. However, more theoretically argued, “street fashion” is a mediated social practice centered around a particular kind of consumption. In this sense, it is inextricably linked to industrial, productive forces with interests in fostering further consumption. In South Korea, it has developed from a tiny, unnoticed fandom at the fringes of a culture industry field that had enjoyed little international success into one of the most noted events in the international field of fashion, all in less than a decade. Based as it is on the attention gained from the efforts of non-fashion field members possessed of little cultural capital or institutional support, the transformation is quite remarkable.
THE CONCEPT OF “STREET FASHION”