2021 was a great year for Korean drama. From thrillers such as Beyond Evil and Hellbound, romantic comedies Yumi’s Cells and Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha to dramas My Name, Vincenzo and Squid Game, a wide variety of shows kept us entertained and glued to our screens. Ahead, we look at 10 of our favourite Korean drama fashion moments in 2021.
Now, We Are Breaking Up depicts the relationship between fashion industry career woman Ha Yeong-eun (played by Song Hye-kyo) and fashion photographer Yoon Jae-gook (played by Jang Ki-yong). Since the show relates to fashion, the styling was not shabby, with many couple outfits and bags to be inspired by. The pairing of the two stars made it even more attractive.
This outfit that Song Hye-kyo is wearing here is an elevated take on the classic black and white pairing. Besides the high-waisted pleated skirt, the white shirt has a unique cuff detail. She’s also carrying a low-profile clutch that adds to the elegance of the outfit.
Who else fell for the sweet interaction between Yoon Hye-jin (Shin Min-a) and Hong Du-sik (Kim Seon-ho) in Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha? Although the show eschews the cityscape for the beautiful and simple coastal village, Shin Min-a still gets full marks for her fashion acumen, with many large brands making their appearance.
Shin Min-a was nothing short of a fashion chameleon in the show with many outfit changes. We even wondered if she hid a stylist in her wardrobe. Among the looks she wore were this 2015 Re-Edition silk shirt and wool trousers from Alessandro Michele’s first Gucci collection. Not only did the colour and silhouette flatter Shin’s body and elegance, but the matching Hèrmes Herbag Zip 31 leather handbag also added to her femininity.
The hit Netflix series Vincenzo stars Song Joong-ki, Jeon Yeo-bin, Ok Taecyeon and Kim Yeo-jin. Dark humour, good-looking actors and a tense plot are all charms of the show, which features Vincenzo Cassano (Song), a mafia lawyer consultant, who fled from Italy to South Korea due to internal disputes and accidentally met rogue lawyer Hong Cha-young (Jeon). The two worked together to maintain justice in an “underworld” method. Although Jeon has a sharp tongue in the show, her strong sense of fashion is not to be missed.
In order to investigate how the Babel group is using a painting to launder money, Song and Jeon sneaked into an art museum posing as a couple. Before the mission, Song bought this stunning blazer dress for Jeon together with a necklace and earrings from Swarovski Sparkling Dance Dial Up collection. The lace tights further amped up Jeon’s style factor.
My Roommate is a Gumiho is one of the must-watch romance dramas of 2021 made from the webtoon of the same name. The show stars Jang Ki-yong as gumiho Shin Woo-yeo and Lee Hye-ri as 22-year-old student Lee Dam who accidentally swallowed one of his fox beads. To solve this problem, they decide to live together.
Hye-ri’s styling in the show is easy to recreate in real life. Among the looks, our favourite is this three-piece set consisting of a shirt, a knitted sweater and a cropped jacket. This layered outfit doesn’t look heavy while the upturned sleeves and collar add dimension. Paired with the evergreen jeans and brown shoulder bag, the overall look is stylish and easy to accomplish.
The Penthouse seasons 2 and 3 were both shown in 2021 and received rave reviews. The captivating plot revolves around the conflict, murder and scheming among society’s upper crust. Kim So-yeon, Lee Ji-ah and Eugene dressed in many gorgeous outfits that made people fantasise about the lives of the upper class.
In the show, Lee Ji-ah plays Shim Su-ryeon who lives in the penthouse of Hera Palace. Her delicate and elegant style can be seen in this get-up consisting of a Zadig & Voltaire silk top, EENK oversized blazer and trousers set as well as a Fred Force 10 necklace. It looks like the unique silhouette exemplifies her power and charisma.
Love (ft. Marriage and Divorce) follows the story of three married couples, each in their 30s, 40s and 50s, and how they encounter and navigate betrayal, cheating and other challenges in their “happy” marital life.
Lee Ga-ryeong played a popular radio show host in her 30s. One of our favourite looks from the show is this soft, feminine floral-print tulle number contrasted against a leather skirt and thigh-high boots that really showed off the character’s incredible sense of style.
Similar to The Penthouse, Mine is another show that focuses on the intrigue and dark side of the upper-class world. Of course, stylish outfits were not in shortage.
Lee Bo-young, who played second daughter-in-law Seo Hi-soo, wore many bright colours in the show. Here, she wears a striped square-neck knit dress from Alexander McQueen with a leather belt. The clean lines and silhouette showed off her character’s wealthy elegance while highlighting her toned physique.
Netflix’s Nevertheless stars two new-generation actors Song Kang and The World of the Married’s Han So-hee. Adapted from a popular webtoon of the same name, this drama focuses on the relationship between Yoo Na-bi (Han) who doesn’t believe in love and Park Jae-eon (Song), a flirtatious man who does not want to be in a relationship.
Han So-hee’s outfits in the show are simple and unpretentious. This scene shows her in a floral Miu Miu dress that looks retro but has a modern silhouette together with a shoulder bag from the Korean bag label Joy Gryson.
Mad For Each Other is one of the top Korean dramas on Netflix in 2021, thanks to its hilarious scripting. This show features a man and a woman who live in the same building and share a psychiatrist, and how they make jokes and heal each other along the way.
Oh Yeon-seo plays Lee Min-kyung who suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder. To make people avoid her, she dresses up in unique manners by wearing a pair of sunglasses and has a stalk of flower by her ear to mask her inner unease. In the first episode, she wore an oversized knit pullover, and has a dark silk scarf wrapped around her neck. This layered look, combined with the round sunglasses, exemplifies her unique sense of style.
Adapted from a popular webtoon of the same name, Yumi’s Cells combines live-action with 3D animation, being the first TV show to do so. The show focuses on the life of an ordinary working girl Kim Yumi (played by Kim Go-eun) and the various cells in her brain as she navigates life and her relationship with Goo Woong (played by Ahn Bo-hyun).
In this scene, Kim layered a light brown vest over a brown oversized shirt and jeans to prepare for her weekend date. The colour pairing and layering gave the overall visual a lot of texture.
This article first appeared in NUYOU. Translation and additional reporting by Ho Guo Xiong.