Our first day back in Korea, we went to Namdaemun wholesale market with Emily and SangKwun to look at baby clothes and hair accessories for Dino Bebe (their new children's clothing line). I had never been to Namdaemun and was SHOCKED at the number of children's and babies clothes there were. There were literally floors and floors of clothes. This is only one aisle, but I think it gives some perspective on how many places there were. And you'll probably notice that it was PACKED for a Thursday afternoon!
The shops were pretty much all set up like this:
a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/markim916/4651556223/" title="IMG_0137 by markim916, on Flickr">
But in addition to the clothes hanging up, there are often clothes all over the front of the displays all over the place like this where people are just rifling around:
After the baby section, we went to the accessories area and looked at endless barrettes, headbands, and ponytail holders. Emily and SangKwun ordered quite a few things for their stores -- it was interesting because it looked like everything was handmade by the person running the shop.
Anyway, next is a photo of every woman's dream -- a wall of SCRUNCHI'S!!!! Obviously there's still a huge market here in Asia. :) And no, Emily and SangKwun didn't purchase any of those for their stores.
To be honest, I find the whole thing very exhausting and overwhelming. I don't know how anybody can find anything, let alone make a decision of what to buy in these place. But Emily is a pro and seems to be able to spot things quickly. I guess that's why she's making the big bucks. ;)
Later that night, we met Mica and her boyfriend for coffee and dinner. She is actually also a Korean adoptee who I met through my (and her) blog. It just worked out that she and her boyfriend were going to be in Seoul at the same time as us. It was especially cool to meet her since she reunited with her birth mother on this trip. I haven't really gotten too involved in the adoptee community, so being able to discuss meeting birth parents with someone who truly understood was a cool experience. She blogs about the search and the reunion here, and it's definitely well worth the read.
Here's the group...
Our first day back was definitely eventful and there are even more stories to tell from this past weekend. In the meantime, have a wonderful Memorial Day!!