GENTLE MONSTER is a Korean Eyewear Brand founded by Hankook Kim in Seoul, Republic of Korea in 2011. When founding GENTLE MONSTER, Kim’s research enlightened him to a gap in the eyewear industry, when he discovered that eyewear had been engineered to accommodate a Western facial structure. According to Kim, South Koreans desire to have small faces, so constructing oversized glasses with low bridge noses, found a gap in the market that was ideally tailored to the specific and nuanced needs of his starting consumer base.
The corporation has also been able to find commercial success internationally; they now directly operate over 40 stores and the company is also maintaining business relations with hundreds of optical shops including eyewear departments in both Nordstrom and Harvey Nichols.
GENTLE MONSTER’s eyewear is primarily made from metal and acetate, which are then engineered into diverse designs and colors season after season. The retail experience goes further than the sale of products; their retail spaces combine striking visual merchandising with conceptual themes to keep customers coming back into the store to see how the brand expereience evolves. Kim says that he wanted to create an exhibition like effect where just as the products changed, so did the environments that they were spaced in.
The brand has also embraced collaboration by embarking on projects with, amongst others, Alexander Wang, Hood By Air, and Opening Ceremony.
- Gentle Monster features in a project.