Korean Hanbok

Collar of Jeogori worn with Korean Hanbok, CF+TC #242a
Collar of Jeogori worn with Korean Hanbok, CF+TC #242a
Gift of Mrs. Lillian Dean Miller

Korean hanbok

Unknown designer, Korea

CFTC #242a-b

Gift of Mrs. Lillian Dean Miller

In January of 1939, Lillian Dean Miller sent Blackmore two ensembles from Seoul, South Korea. This blouse and overcoat were made to mimic the hanbok, traditional Korean dress worn by both men and women. For men, the hanbok typically consists of a jeogori (blouse), baeja (vest) and baji (pants) all of which are made in silk. In a letter to Blackmore, Miller explained that the garments she had made were reproduced in rayon rather than silk because it was much cheaper. The design of the overcoat also diverts from the traditional cut and length of the baeja, which is supposed to be shorter in the front than in the back so the wearer could sit on the floor without wrinkling the front of the vest when seated. In this respect, the ensemble Miller gave to Blackmore shares an affinity with the hanbok, but doesn’t follow the traditional cut, style, or material of the traditional style of dress.

Additional Media:


To learn more about the significance of the hanbok in Korean culture and its appropriation within Western fashion, please visit the following article on the Fashion and Race database.


For additional information about the hanbok’s influence on contemporary Korean fashion and haute couture, please view the following digital fashion exhibitions.

Baeja, The Beauty of Korea on display at the Korean Cultural Centre, London, United Kingdom in 2007.

Korean Couture on display at Asian Art Museum in San Francisco, CA in 2018.


Yi, K., Yi, M., Chang, S., Hong, N. (2005). Traditional Korean costume. Folkstone, Kent: Global Oriental.