Upon entering designer Jaeyoon Jeong’s new contemporary boutique in New York City’s Nolita, customers are greeted by an oversized navy and orange welcome mat that reads “Buy Your Pride.”
“This is fashion, but it’s also my customers’ pride,” said Jeong, of the reasoning behind the salutation at the entrance of his first retail store. “I’m considerate of my customers’ needs and I want to provide them with the best of everything- from sewing and patterns to fabrics.”
The store, located on the corner of Spring and Mott Street, opened its doors just over two weeks ago. The interior is sleek and modern, and according to the designer, it was a careful decision to use clean lines and an all-white backdrop to let the clothing really stand out. Jaeyoon Jeong carries separates for men and women from the designer’s eponymous label, and price-wise, the pieces are definitely on the more affordable end of the contemporary spectrum.
For the ladies, think bubble-hemmed dresses with plenty of draping and leather detailing on the neck, shift dresses with contrast trimming, or a short-sleeved jumper with sunburst pleats. The color palette includes basic shades of gray, ivory, and black, and prices range from $239 for a four-pocket shift with pintuck detailing at the waist to $279 for halter pant jumpsuit. For the guys, there are plenty of long and short-sleeved button-ups and pants in either cotton-rayon blends or linen, all for under $200. There is also a hooded nylon jacket with removable sleeves, which takes you from outerwear to cool vest instantaneously for just $259.
“My favorite labels are Theory and Hugo Boss because they are both modern with something special. So it makes sense that with my own line, I create modern clothing but I also add my own style to them. I create unique pieces,” said the designer, holding up a short-sleeved jumpsuit that has not one, but three waistbands.
After spending two years working in fashion in his native Korea, Jeong relocated to the states just three-and-a-half years ago. In that time, he received a Master’s degree in fashion from Drexel University, worked as a freelance children and menswear designer, and opened his own store. While studying at Drexel, Jeong was also the recipient of the Jean-Charles de Castelbajac Award three years ago, allowing him to spend three months interning for the designer in Paris in 2007.
The designer has big plans for the future, including opening more stores in Miami and Los Angeles, showing during New York Fashion Week, and high hopes of expanding into the wholesale sector. He’s also launching an e-commerce component to his website in the fall so his collection can be purchased online.
Jaeyoon Jeong, 29 Spring Street, New York, NY 10012, 212-226-2540