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How Would Doo-Ri Chung Spend $16,000?

The designer won rave Fashion Week reviews with her ethereal jersey dresses, and now she’s got funding to expand her business. She tells us how she’d spend the cost of one season’s samples.


Before Fashion Week, I was still working in the basement of my parents’ dry-cleaning store in Saddle Brook, New Jersey. My new studio is on 38th Street—the garment district is such a wonderful mix of taste and vulgarity. It’s completely raw except for some sewing machines, and I want to make it homey. There’s an industrial chandelier at Moss called 85 Lamps Hanging Light ($2,090) that I’d love for above the cutting table. Our bathroom is storage at this point, but I’d cover it with sea-blue Ann Sacks glass tiles ($2,605) . And I’d frame some vintage metal ribbon that looks like lace ($50 a yard at Tinsel Trading). I’d never put that on a garment—it’s way too expensive.

My boyfriend is an artist. He designed my look book and my Website, and he does my shipping. We live in a tiny one-bedroom with no furniture. It’s our dream to have a custom-made jellyfish tank ($8,000 at City Aquarium). It’s so gorgeous—the tank is dark, and the jellyfish are like see-through balls of light. So calming. I’d get six ($300).

I love to cook, so I’d buy a brushed stainless-steel All-Clad seven-piece set from Williams-Sonoma ($672), then go to Han Ah Reum in Koreatown to buy $50 worth of groceries: red-pepper paste, kimchi, sesame seeds, and sesame oil. I’d get skirt steak at Esposito’s on Ninth Avenue ($10) and oysters and shrimp at Sea Breeze Market on Ninth and 40th ($6 for a dozen oysters; $12 for a pound of shrimp). Billy’s Bakery on Ninth has the best Key-lime pie ($25).

I’d love to learn how to play an acoustic guitar ($96 for eight lessons at World of Music), mostly because I’ve been listening to Jack Johnson lately. I got into knitting for a while, so I’d buy a ball of charcoal-gray cashmere yarn ($54 at Purl). But I’m not a very good knitter. I’ve never finished anything.

Normally, I don’t like to wear much jewelry, apart from a gold band, a luck ring, that’s very thin. But I’d splurge on a crocheted chain necklace with gold discs from Ninh Wysocan ($995 at Barneys New York). She’s so talented. And I’d buy Jean-Michel Cazabat suede boots ($495 at Barneys) and Christian Louboutin round-toe pumps in nude ($540). Or black. I only wear black, white, and beige. And jeans. I live vicariously through the people who wear my clothes.

Reality Check
What She Really Spent Today
Coffee at Guy and Gallard . . . $1.75
Cuban sandwich at Café Habana . . . $7.05
Theme magazine . . . $5.95
Dinner for two at Cho Dang Gol . . . $80
Groceries from FreshDirect . . . $60.48

Total $155.23


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