I was born in Seoul, South Korea and from an early age I had a love for fashion. I always dreamed of one day coming to New York, which for me was the capital of fashion. After studying in Japan, I found my way to New York, but it took several years before I finally broke into the fashion industry. I took an entry level position with a clothing manufacturer in the Fashion District and learned the fashion business from the ground up. Later, I was able to become an apprentice and eventually a full-time patternmaker. During that time, I had the opportunity to work with some big names in fashion and I’m so grateful for all the people I’ve met and learned from.
The name ILYO (ill•yo) is an abbreviation for ‘I Love Yogi’. Yogi is the name of the two most important loves of my life. It’s the nickname I gave my husband because he reminded me of the cartoon character, Yogi bear, who is always eating, napping, and getting into trouble. Yogi is also the name we gave our French bulldog, because he too is always eating, napping, and getting into trouble. I thank my big Yogi so much for supporting me through this whole adventure and my little Yogi for always making me smile despite all the challenges.