The 8 hidden gems in the Korean Hanbok
Hanbok, or Korean traditional clothing, has become very popular among foreigners. The beauty of Korean traditional clothes has been realized worldwide, not only in Korea, and even among several Hollywood stars. In 2003, Britney Spears visited Korea and made an appearance with a pink modern hanbok completed with a jokduri headpiece.
The beauty of Hanbok is found in the elegant flow of its lines and in its beautiful color palette. The nice curved baerae (bottom line of the jacket’s sleeves) with the sharp straight lines of the dongjeong (creased white lining of the jacket’s collar), reveals the subtle and beautiful traditional Korean aesthetics. The Korean traditional clothing can be bought or lend in a hanbok shop and there is almost always a hanbok sale in the hanbok shops in Korea.
Have you ever wondered why the hanbok is so beautiful? It’s not only what we see, but there’s more to it. We’ll explain what.
First, let’s begin saying that there are 8 beauties that compose the traditional hanbok. These are:
The first beauty is the beauty of the structure. The beauty of structure is referred to the simple structural beauty and rhythmic flow that complements the body’s movement.
One of the reasons why the Hanbok has gotten such global attention is because the attractiveness even shines through in the lovely lines created by the body’s movement while wearing it. Women feel like they belong to royalty. The structure has its beauty and makes the women feel comfortable while wearing it.
Beauty of form:
The hanbok radiates a natural physical beauty in its attractive silhouette and lines, which allow for unrestrained movement of the movement. As already mentioned, it is very comfortable for women to wear hanbok.
Beauty of creativity
Then comes the beauty of creativity. The hanbok is preferred to use of flat fabric that only achieves dimensionality when it is worn on the body. When placed on the human frame, the hanbok takes on a life of its own. A life that is more natural, elegant and flowing.
Beauty of Harmony
Then comes the beauty of Harmony. The beauty of Harmony means that the hanbok features straight and curved lines. This gives the hanbok an attractive flow representative of a uniquely Korean aesthetic. The graceful, harmonious movement that happens when the hanbok is actually worn, is praised the world over.
Beauty of Color
The beauty of color is important to traditional clothing. Hanbok clothing colors are decided according to the five colors theory (obangsaek in Korean). The five colors theory refers to the yin and yang, and the five elements theory. The five elements are water, earth, fire, metal, and wood. You learn more about it here.
Beauty of nature
The beauty of nature is referred to the curved line, one of the hanbok’s most eye-catching features. The hanbok has its full and loose shape, rhythm, and irregular proportions when worn and has a natural angle devoid of artificiality that creates a free-flowing effect and brings out the texture of the natural, hand-woven fabric.
Beauty of empty space
The beauty of empty space means that some aspects of the hanbok are designed to leave intentionally ‘empty’. These empty aspects are to be filled by the wearer uniquely, which eventually gives the hanbok a depth that is not commonly seen in the clothing.
Beauty of personal character
The beauty of personal character refers to the full shape of the hanbok, which emphasizes the wearer’s authority and dignity. While this may have been impractical, it was still a feature that made hanbok a reflection of social status and propriety. The simple harmony of the color palette created by limiting the number of bright colors used places greater weight on the wearer’s character over the hanbok’s decoration.
Certain hanbok designs used to represent the social ranking of the wearer. The king, for example, used to be represented by the dragon. And the queen used to be represented by the Phoenix. Tiger designs were used to represent military officials and were commonly placed on the shoulders, fronts, and backs of their court robes. Moreover, civil officials used to be represented by the cane, an animal who believed to be pure and resilient.