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When the hard, heavy rains come you have two choices: You can duck and run, or you can submit and submerge; you can agree to be inundated, and experience it as a kind of cleansing—a supernatural cleansing.

The monsoon season is more than an abstract concept. Sük's memories of the summers in Korea are flooded with moments of cloudburst, and the ancestral memories embedded in her DNA color every modern and metaphorical experience of drought and deluge. And then, of course, there’s Seattle, the designer’s current home, a city of rain.

It was during one especially punishing and wet weather pattern that the designer began to imagine the Monsoon collection. Not only was the rain unrelenting; her schedule was, too. Immersed in the feeling of being underwater, she began to think about jackets that turned inside and out again, wide-legged and cropped pants, shirt dressing and shoulder-bearing tops— all the better to receive a life-changing shower.

After several seasons of S C H A I, the Asian elements are a true hallmark, and those in Monsoon feel respectfully lifted from agricultural settings, and then placed within a very right-now fashion context. Fabrications and colors are similarly fundamental; featured this season are semi-sheer stripes, minimalist plaids, burn-out textures, linens and cottons that stretch and respond, and Italian cottons in beautiful inky, water tones.

It’s tempting to evoke the old saw about springtime showers and the flowers that inevitably follow, but Monsoon is about a more fixed and obstinate outpouring. The sunny side of this particular climate though, is that it’s already passed. The clouds have parted, the storm has moved on and we’re left—together—with the creative growth.


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