One of my favorite areas to shop in Seoul is 동대문 (Dongdaemun, also shortened to "DDM"). Known as the wholesale district, the peak times for the area is from 11pm-2am. It's a great area to indulge your jet lag by engaging in some wholesome retail therapy and feeding your junk food demon.
While the budget conscious can scour finds in Migliore or even in the Pyeonghwa markets, the up and coming Korean labels can be found at Doota. On a trip last winter, I stumbled upon Cres E. Dim's boutique in the basement (now relocated to the first floor) and picked up a few gems. I've worn the zigzag top (originally purchased from A-land), but this piece is by far my favorite.
A wool cape/coat, the design is absolutely impeccable. I was initially drawn to it because of its super long hood, which is so great at keeping my hair in place on windy days, but there are so many other details in this singular piece that truly reflects the designer's contemplation on making this a functional staple in any person's wardrobe. There's a removable fleece lining to keep you warm in the biting winter, buttons on the hood so you can remove it for the spring or early fall, and deep pockets to serve as mittens or portable junk drawers.
Although I can't say that I'm impressed by Kim Hong-bum's other pieces, his outerwear design is definitely worth a second look.
Cres E. Dim
Designer Gallery, First Floor, Shop #33
+82 02) 3398-5311