This season the husband and wife team, who design Y and Kei, showed a melancholy collection infused with silver, black and blue. The designers chose to heavily rely on silk throughout the collection, with touches of wool and cotton to contradict the mood. Not quite a stellar collection, but it managed to have a certain amount of appeal due the breath of several silk cocktail dresses.
A sleek lavender pleated and sequined dress with alternate colors glowed on the runway. The embroidered sequined pieces without a doubt were the most elegant shown, and added a touch of sophistication the collection lacked. Wool was added to give mass to the collection and was displayed equally as brilliant as the silk on a navy and lavender chenille jacquard belted jacket. The selection of fabrics at times was not concise, but the Y & Kei customer base will still find a temptation in more a few of the garments shown.
Husband-and-wife team, Hanii Y and Gene Kei of Y&Kei met in college as classmates of the Linguistics program in Seoul, Korea. Challenging their parents' dream of pursuing careers as diplomats, they pursued their love for fashion and traveled to San Francisco in 1987. Y attended the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising while Kei enrolled at the Academy of Art College but Kei's obligatory military duty as a Korean citizen required them to return home after completing their individual studies.
Shortly after returning to Seoul, Y&Kei produced and launched their first brand, Obzee, in 1993. Their second line, O'2nd, was developed four years later and allowed the duo to build an even stronger creative foundation and overall reputation in the fashion industry. The two lines have been extremely successful and are currently sold in 80 stores nationwide.
Y&Kei's passion for innovation, uniqueness, and intrigue motivated them to launch yet another line, Y&Kei Water the Earth, in the fall of 2001. The ready-to-wear collection fused Asian history and tradition with a European edge and was based on the Buddhist belief of the four pillars - to "water the earth," or nourish the world with beauty and happiness. "We want to use our complementing personalities and creativity to create clothing for women which makes them feel confident, sexy, and self-assured," says Kei.
In 2003, only sixteen months after their American debut, Y&Kei received the Rising Star Award for Best New Designer from the Fashion Group International. As a result of this achievement, the designers gained even more media attention and began attracting such trend-setting celebrities as Kate Hudson, Halle Berry, and Britney Spears.
Y & Kei is available at the U.S. flagship store in New York City's fashionable Soho district, nationwide at Nordstrom's department stores and at various exclusive boutiques in the U.S. Outside of the U.S., Y & Kei can also be found throughout Europe, Japan, and Hong Kong. Y & Kei currently reside in Seoul but spend a great deal of their time traveling the world to find inspiration for their collections, and working in New York City at their SoHo store.
PRESS & SALES
GREG MILLS LTD
Y & KEI
125 Greene Street
New York, NY 10012
230 West 39th Street
New York, NY 10018
Contact: Greg Mills
PR: HL Group
141 5th Ave., 6th Floor
New York, NY 10010
Contact: Megan Salt
Phone:212-529-5533 x: 250