And he is a giant, both figuratively and literally speaking. He's known as Korea's foremost fashion designer. It's obvious; he's name is everywhere...and on everything! Now, he is .... in Itaewon!
Guys, meet Mr. Andre Kim!
I was passing through the main Itaewon road on my way home to Hannam-dong a few weeks ago and saw the sign 'Andre Kim Jewelry' on one of the buildings on the opposite end of the main street, the side closer to the Hangganjin Station. Well, I told myself, this was not the first time he's been to my neighborhood.
The first time I saw him in person was when I picked up my favorite pasta from my favorite Italian restaurant in Hannam-dong. I was at the cashier's counter signing the charge slip when suddenly, I fragrantly sensed somebody standing next to me. Yes, fragrantly! When I turned around, it was him -- THE Andre Kim: big, tall and enveloped in his signature all-white costume and very strong fragrance!
I thought that perhaps since he has his own perfume, he sprayed the whole bottle that day! (Just kidding, Andre! But did you?) I clearly remember his perfume was so strong it successfully drowned out the you-can't-get-enough-of aroma of the freshly baked Margherita pizza wafting through the whole restaurant. I thought I was at the Lotte Duty Free Shop's perfumery section for a moment. Hahaha!
Recalling that episode, I decided to pull out some of the photographs I took during one of his fashion shows. I clearly remember that his clothes were truly beautiful, and from the way they look, I was sure they were very expensive and .... heavy!
Well, Mr. Andre Kim, welcome to Itaewon. And I hope you sell a lot of jewerly, not that there isn't enough glitter lying around Seoul. Last December, a middle-aged Korean woman I shared an elevator with had so much glitzy jewelry from head to shoes that, I told myself, had she worn some Christmas lights, I would have definitely mistaken her for a Christmas tree! (Hahaha!) And please cut down on the perfume-spraying; the neighborhood would still want to enjoy the aroma of those brick-oven pizzas!
And today, I saw on the news that he's in the hospital. Let's wish him well.
And yes, that's Kim Bum modelling (the photo of two guys in white; he's the one on the right) before he hit it big with that drama about boys and plants, er, flowers.