The K-pop girl gang and Givenchy ambassadors sift through their closets to handpick their favourite music video or street style looks
aespa are a K-pop group with a difference: not all of their members are real. While there are four of them that definitely do exist in real life (KARINA, WINTER, GISELLE, and NINGNING, who hail from South Korea, China, and Japan), they also each have a virtual version. The “ae” part of the group’s name stands for “avatar experience”, and their avatars (æ-KARINA, ae-WINTER, ae-GISELLE, ae-NINGNING) exist in a digital world based on data uploaded by their human counterparts. aespa’s members can, in a slightly Black Mirror twist, interact with their own “ae” via text messages and phone calls.
Although they’re still new, aespa are already breaking records. Their first-ever track, “Black Mamba”, became the fastest K-pop debut music video to reach 100 million views. As well as being known for their ultra-catchy songs and strong choreography, the group have also become renowned for their fierce fashion choices. There’s even an “aespa fashion” Instagram account dedicated to what each member is wearing, complete with RRPs for each piece so you can shop their look.
Joining the ranks of BTS becoming Louis Vuitton ambassadors and BLACKPINK’s Rosé linking with Tiffany & Co., aespa recently became brand ambassadors for Givenchy, the first K-pop band to do so, with creative director Matthew Williams stating that he was “mesmerised” by their individual energy. They featured on the cover of Dazed Korea back in March (watch a behind-the-scenes glimpse of their shoot here).
We caught up with the four-piece to find out what each of their all-time favourite wardrobe choices are, and to discover more about their fashion inspirations.
”Out of all the stage outfits I wore so far, I especially liked the military style look for the “Next Level” music video shoot. Personally, I prefer clothes that are more muted and not too flamboyant – so dark-colored or just plain white pieces. That being said, this stage outfit was right up my alley. The design is simple but the intricate detail and added glitter made the outfit more stylish. As for my everyday look, I usually go for pieces that are simple but have accentuated details that make them unique. These days, with the weather getting hotter, I’ve been wearing a lot of crop tops. For example, I really liked what I wore for the “Next Level” TikTok video, which was a plain white shirt with shorts and a cute hairpin to finish the whole look!
”As far as my fashion inspirations go, I really like Kendall Jenner and the general vibe that she gives off through fashion. I enjoy learning about her style but I don’t necessarily “copy” her style because each person has a unique vibe that complements certain styles. Like Kendall, I think it’s important to feel confident in your own skin, regardless of what you wear! Rather than sticking to a specific brand, I tend to choose outfits that I feel confident in.”
”I wore this chic, white Givenchy dress while shooting some YouTube content recently, which I really liked. From a distance, it looks pretty simple, but when you look at it up close, it has unique details and patterns that make it not just any ordinary white dress. I like how it’s clean and minimal but makes a statement. I always say: simple is best, and less is more!
”There are a few people I get fashion inspiration from and they are all very different. For example, I like the lovely vibe of Barbara Palvin, the chic vibe of Mikako from the Japanese girl group FAKY, and the clean vibe of Aoi Yū. I wouldn’t say I’m limited to just one specific style. I’m open to learning and exploring more looks!”
”Although I tend to wear fancy, eye-catching outfits on stage, on a daily basis, I prefer casual, street style clothing. I especially like to mix and match high-end brand items with simple pieces. For example, the brown checkered shirt I am wearing in the photo is a must-have item for me. I love it so much that I own a similar shirt from another brand as well. I paired this with a lace tank top and a bold silver chain necklace to dress up the outfit. For pants, I almost always wear black leggings. These days, I’m trying to experiment with different types of pants for various looks! Finally, for shoes, I’m wearing my all-time favourite Dr Martens classics. My outfit is never complete without them!
”My fashion inspiration comes from my mother who used to be a fashion designer. Looking back, I’d say she was the reason that I developed a strong interest in fashion from an early age!” – Giselle
”When it comes to fashion, I get inspired by a lot of things. Besides the weather, I like to dress based on my mood and the energy I’m feeling at that moment. For example, if I want to listen to sad music in a studio, I’d wear clothes that fit that mood, and if I have dinner plans, I’d probably wear a comfortable pair of straight jeans. My fashion inspiration comes from my mother who used to be a fashion designer. Looking back, I’d say she was the reason that I developed a strong interest in fashion from an early age!”
”For the ”Next Level” photoshoot, I felt very honoured to have worked with my favourite photographer, Bryan Huynh, and stylist, Cece Liu, who put together this look for me in the photo. This is definitely one of my favourite looks so far! I wore this gorgeous forest green dress with long space cotton boots, which made me feel like a lead female character in a sci-fi movie. The colour green went really well with my bright red hair! This look reminded me of the DC character Poison Ivy – very bubbly and eclectic. The flower ear accessory I wore was actually from one of my favourite brands as well and I think it put the whole look together. Not only was it modern and chic but it went really well with the concept of our new single, “Next Level”.
”Ever since I was young, I loved fashion and art, so for a short period of time, I dreamt of becoming a fashion designer. My mum and grandmother were also very stylish, so I remember copying my mum’s looks when I was young because I wanted to look just like her. My interest in fashion hasn’t stopped since, and I still enjoy reading fashion magazines and watching fashion shows to this day. As for my fashion role model, I’d have to say, the one and only legendary fashion designer, Karl Lagerfeld.”
Watch the video for ”Next Level”: