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Hello everyone! It’s been awhile, isn’t it? I am finally back to blogging after a long hiatus. Today I am writing about a handmade jewellery studio owned by a friend, a studio where you can make your very own custom jewellery in Seoul. I have developed a great interest in jewellery and accessories ever since I stepped foot into the lifestyle and fashion industry. My collection of fashion jewellery has expanded over the years and trust me, it shows no signs of slowing down.

So when my friend, Mong, told me about her new venture called UDUL Studio, where she conducts DIY custom jewellery workshops and even invited me for a studio tour, I got really excited. I thought it would be fun to find out how is it like to make jewellery entirely by hand.

Located in the Gangnam district, this cozy little heaven of all-things-handmade will bring out the inner designer in you. Classes are conducted at an underground studio where she shares with other artists. The atmosphere is relaxed and fun. You get to learn all the jewellery making basics before creating one you can proudly call it your work.

I was given a small tray upon arrival, with all things needed – several tweezers and a wooden holder where I can put all my selected materials in the later part of the class. The class covers basic skills like how to make simple jewellery clasps, closures, and connectors. By the 1 hour mark, I have got the basics and started working on my wood earring.

It wasn’t easy. The thin, fine wires are delicate. You’ll need to stay focus for a very long time, tweezing them to the correct size and to close the tiny loop tight. This requires so much patience and an excessive amount of attention. Twisting them too much will cause breakage and I destroyed several connectors before finally connecting the wooden piece together. Super hard work, but it is all worth it!

The wood earring I made during the class.

The classes are conducted either in group or solo, depending on the total amount of guests who signed up at one time. I’d say it is a great way to spend your time in Seoul, if you’re up to creating something unique and meaningful for yourself (or even for a friend)!

Writer’s Note: I made a wood earring and a sky blue colour suede bracelet during the session. I do not have photos of the bracelet but I do have photos of me wearing the lovely wood earrings. The dangling wood pieces somehow make my face looks smaller. It makes a perfect accessory for my summer dresses! I matched it with my LIE SS18 stripped dress with ribbon when I met up with the designer of the dress, Mr. Chung Chung Lee when he was in Seoul.

I really enjoyed the whole DIY Jewellery making session with Mong. It just feels like having a cup of tea with a friend while having a jewellery making party at an underground studio. Mong speaks English so you’ll be able to follow the class. Hit her IG up to arrange a class if you’re interested!

Class Information

Single Class (one-off class suitable for travellers) 
Participants will bring back 2 types of jewellery (1 pair of earring + 1 bracelet/ 2 bracelets/ 2 pairs of earrings).
Class Price:  KRW 45,000
Class Duration: 2-3 hours

Other classes suitable for Seoulites:
Class Pack A – 6 times, KRW350,000
Class Pack B – 10 times, KRW 700,000
Jewellery Making Certification Class – 14 times, KRW2,800,000

Contact Details

You may contact Mong via her official Instagram prior to your arrival in Seoul. Kakaotalk users may contact her via her Kakao ID: jimong20

GROUND 37°C
Underground, 13 , 52-gil, Sapyeong-daero
Seocho-gu, Seoul.
스튜디오 37도씨 취미미술
서울시 서초구 사평대로 52길 13지하


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Its spring and flowers are blooming everywhere in South Korea! However, it has been raining continuously these few days in Seoul and I am afraid the raindrops will knock the cherry blossom petals off thus cutting the bloom short. If you missed (or might be missing) the cherry blossom season, here’s something else you can look forward to — the pink azaleas.

I am not talking about one or two rows of azaleas in the park, but something really massive. A mountain full of blooming azaleas that turn the entire site an eye feasting one.

Located in Bucheon, a city at the outskirt of Seoul, this place is perfect for half-day-outing, especially during the first 3 weeks in April due to its famous azalea bloom. The Wonmi Mountain (원미산) will be covered with hundreds and thousands of brightly coloured azaleas in full bloom this time every year. You may want to pack your own picnic bag and spend your entire morning there appreciating the beauty of mother earth.

I especially enjoyed my morning at Wonmi mountain. You’ll see adorable elementary school kids hiking up the stairs with their teachers, and ajummas sharing sweet potatoes and a cup of coffee under the trees. The better air, the bright pink flowers, and the relaxed vibe there at the park are all so wonderful.

I’ll totally list it as one of the not touristy things to do in Seoul! It is true that the cherry blossom waits for no one, but always remember you have an alternative. The azaleas never disappoint.


Writer’s Note: Aside admiring the bloom, there’s an annual Wonmisan Azalea Festival where visitors can participate in various activities. It is usually held on the 2nd week of April.  If picnic is your kind of activity, there’s a huge convenient storeto get some snacks at the Bucheon Sports Complex Station. Alternatively, you can pack your own food before departing from Seoul. Azalea flowers last about 3 weeks to a month. However, it is best to visit the place before the 3rd weekend of April to avoid disappointment. Please wear comfortable shoes as you’ll need to walk uphill quite a bit to reach the park.

Contact Details:

Wonmi Mountain Azalea Hill
482, Sosa-ro, Wonmi-gu, Bucheon-si, Gyeonggi-do
원미산 진달래동산
경기도 부천시 소사로 482 (춘의동)

Direction:

The Wonmi Mountain Azalea Hill can be accessed from anywhere in Seoul.
1. Get on subway line No. 7 and alight at Bucheon Sports Complex Station (부천 종합운동장역), then exit from Exit No. 2. Continue walking straight and you’ll find a stadium on your right-hand side. 

2. Walk into the compound of the stadium, until you see the above slope on your way up. You’ll be able to find a notice board with Korean wordings that read “진달래동산 가는길” (circled in red in the picture above). Follow the direction indicated: go up the slope.

3. Once you climbed up the slope, you’ll be able to see the blooming azaleas on the hills. Follow the crowd and continue to walk uphill, towards the mountain.

4. You should be able to see the staircase leading upward. Climb up these stairs and you’ll reach the entrance of the Wonmi Mountain Azalea Hill soon!

Entrance of the Wonmi Mountain Azalea Hill.

Maps

If you’re currently located in Korea, please use the Naver Map below to navigate: 

2018.2.24 | 지도 크게 보기 ©  NAVER Corp.


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Seoul experienced the coldest winter this year with temperature falls to near record lows. For those who are visiting South Korea, fret not! Because we have prepared you a list of 8 best winter foods in Seoul to keep you warm and cosy throughout your trip. Although we would love to include the amazing street foods in the list, we figured having a proper meal at a restaurant would be a better plan when the weather is not performing. Trust us – you’ll feel much better in a restaurant that serves piping hot soup.

Simseun Tang Army Stew (Budae Jjigae)

Sim Seun Tang serves the best army stew in Seoul, at least in my book. I have tried various army stews across the country, but Sim Seung Tang got me return again and again. Their broth has a deep flavour that is irresistible. Remember to mix the soup, sausages and SPAMs with the buttered rice – terribly sinful but downright satisfying. Read more about the review here.

Sim Seun Tang 심슨탕
Address: Seogyo-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul. 355-210.
Nearest Station: Hongik University Station, Exit no.9
Tel. 070-4100-8318 | 5pm–1am |

Bukmakgol BBQ Ribs

You should know how it feels like when you are feasting on a humongous (as shown above, no kidding.), fall-off-the-bone beef ribs, when it is -18 degree outside. These huge ribs are slow-grilled until tender and succulent, it just falls off the bone without much effort to pry from the bone. Best pair with makgeolli (Korean rice wine). Read more about the review here.

Bukmakgol 북막골
30-2 Samcheong-dong, Jungno-gu.
중로구 삼청동 30-2
Tel: 02-730-0980 |930am-930pm|

Tosokchon Ginseng Chicken

This is on our must-eat food list for any first-timers in Seoul. Simmered in the milky broth to tender, the chicken is best known to boost your energy and vitality. I love how effectively the potent ginseng wine works to warm up my body. Their house kimchi is one of our favourites too! Read more about the Tosokchon ginseng chicken here.

Tosokchon Samgyetang 토속촌 삼계탕
85-1 Jongno-Gu, Chebu-Dong, Seoul.
Tel: +82 2-737-7444 | 10am-11pm |

Duroomi Kitchen Lotus Hot Pot

The lotus leaf meal at Duroomi is a go-to place when you are sick of the typical Kimchi-land food. Hidden in Samcheongdong, the restaurant serves contemporary Korean food using lotus leaves as the main ingredient. Their hot pot set lunch is perfect on a windy or snowy winter day, especially when you’ve exhausted your feet from exploring the neighbourhood. If you’re travelling with your folks, and when they complain about having too much kimchi, bring them here. Read more about the restaurant here.

At Duroomi 두루미 키친
27-6 Samcheong-Dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul.
서울시 종로구 삼청동 27-6
Tel: +82-70-4063-2787

Jaha Son Mandoo (Dumplings)

How about having some handmade Korean dumplings, or a bowl of dumpling rice ball soup (tTteok Mandoo Guk 떡 만두국) in the winter? Although it is a hallmark dish for the new year, the soup is enjoyed by the young and old all year round. It is a filling dish, also a great option to warm up your body in the winter. Read more about it here.

Jaha Son-Mandoo 자하손만두
245-2 Buam-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea
서울 종로구 부암동 245-2
Tel :+82 2-379-2648 | 11 am-930 pm|

Hwang Beef Intestines

You may have heard of the BBQ beef intestines in Korea – We do agree it does sounds gross, but we find it delicious! If you haven’t got the guts to give it a try, this beef intestines restaurant at Sinchon is a good place to start with. Marinated for more than 4 hours, these intestines are utterly soft, fluffy and buttery, bringing your Korean BBQ experience to a whole new level. Did we say it is also good for complexion and digestion? Read more about the beef intestines Read more about the BBQ beef intestines here.

Sinchon Hwang So Gop-Chang 신촌 황소곱창 본점
Seoul, Seodaemun-gu, Sinchon-dong.
신촌동 서대문구 서울
Tel. +82 2-336-7379|5pm-2am (weekdays) 5pm-4am (weekends)|

Guldari Sikdang Kimchi Jjigae

Photo courtesy of Nomad 21.com

This restaurant serves Kimchi Jjigae (Kimchi stew) to the locals for more than 40 years near the Gongdeok AREX Station. Their kimchi stew set costs KRW 7,000 and everything including the rice, stew and side dishes are refillable. It is eat-all-you-can here. A bowl of this spicy-sweet, utterly Korean comfort food during winter? Yes please, take my money. Read the complete review here.

Guldari Sikdang 굴다리 식당
181-45 Dohwa-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul, South Korea
서울특별시 마포구 도화동 181-45
11am-10pm

Villa de Spicy Tteokbokki (Spicy Rice Cakes)

Enjoy premium Tteokbokki (Spicy Korean Rice cakes) at Garosugil, the trendiest shopping district in Seoul. Customised your spicy rice cakes your way, adding only the ingredients you love. Our all-time favourite sides: Jjeol Myeon, the Korean chewy noodles and Mozarella cheese, these two will do some magic to your Tteokbokki pot. We love the trendy atmosphere in there – It is like having Tteokbokki while attending a fashion show! Read more here.

Villa de Spicy 빌라드 스파이시
541-10 Sinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea.
Tel: 02-518-1973

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Night markets in Seoul are always full of surprises. Junk food and street delicacies, either local or international, they’re all so hard to resist. In the recent years, an interesting night market called “Bamdokkaebi Night Market” 밤도께비 야시장 has risen to popularity amongst Seoulites. It is currently the trendiest night markets held in Seoul.

“Bam” means night in Korean, and “Dokkaebi” refers to a Korean folklore character that appears only at night to trick human and disappears when the night turns to dusk. It is named after the characteristic of such night markets because they’re known to appear only at night and completely disappear by morning.

Bamdokkaebi Night Market first started in Yeouido in 2015 and expanding into 4 other venues in Seoul due to surging popularity — Dongdaemun Design Plaza, Cheonggye Plaza, Cheonggye-Cheon and Banpo. I have recently visited a Bamdokkaebi Night Market in Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP). Check out the video below:

Best Night Market in Seoul: Bamdokkaebi Night Market 밤도께비 야시장 - YouTube

These night markets are typically held every Fridays and Saturdays, with some Sunday markets happening at several locations mentioned above. Visitors can expect snack trucks, handmade goods stalls and cultural performances at these markets from 5pm- 11 pm.

The food trucks selections are wide. Expect international dishes like shrimp pad thai, Mexican tacos, English fish & chips, sandwiches, grilled lobsters, churros, hot dogs as well as Korean street food such as mandoo, ddeokbokki, and king sized bulgogi stick. The license to sell food here isn’t easy to obtain either. According to an egg benedict truck owner, all of these vendors went through several rounds of interviews before given a green light to do business there.

Different Bamdokkaebi Night Market has slightly different characteristics. For example, Yeouido focuses more on international fair, hence given the theme of “Yeouido World Night Market” whereas the one at DDP is themed as a “Youth Runway Market”, which functions as a platform for the youth to dream and shine. If you want to do some shopping to support local artists and designers, DDP night market is clearly the better option.

Yeouido Night Market. Photo courtesy of Seoul Bamdokkaebi Night Market.

Yeouido Night Market. Photo courtesy of Seoul Bamdokkaebi Night Market.

Yeouido Night Market is believed to be the biggest and oldest Bamdokkaebi Night Market in Seoul, which makes it the best night market you should check out if you’re in short of time. However, if you prefer something more stylish or quirky, board on subway line No.2 to Dongdaemun History & Culture Park Station, where you’ll be greeted by the energetic crowd at the market.

DDP Youth Runway Market. Photo Courtesy of Seoul Bamdokkaebi Night Market.

Runway Show during Seoul Fashion Week. Sept 2016. Photo courtesy of Seoul Bamdokkaebi Night Market.

For those who prefer a romantic night out with the loved ones, check out the Bamdokkaebi night market at Banpo. Themed as “Romantic Starlight Market”, the market focuses on food and various performances such as Jazz and Acapella. Remember to catch the Banpo Bridge Light Show when you’re there!

Banpo Night Market.Photo courtesy of Seoul Bamdokkaebi Night Market.

Performance at Banpo Night Market. Photo courtesy of Seoul Bamdokkaebi Night Market.

Banpo Bridge Light Show. Photo courtesy of Seoul Bamdokkaebi Night Market.

Information

Click onto the compiled Google map below to locate the nearest Bamdokkaebi Night Market.

Yeouido World Night Market 여의도 월드나이트마켓
Address: 330 Yeoeuido Hangang Park, Yeoeuidong-ro, Yondeungpo-gu, Seoul.
서울시 영등포구 여의동로 330 여의도한강공원 물빛광장
Every Friday & Saturday, March – October.
6pm-11pm

DDP Youth Runway Market 청춘 런웨이마켓
Address: 281 Euljiro, Jung-gu, Seoul.
서울시 중구 을지로 281
Every Friday & Saturday, March – October.
6pm-11pm

Banpo Romantic Starlight Market 반포 낭만달빛마켓
Address: Banpo Hangang Park, Banpo 2 dong, Seocho-gu, Seoul.
서울시 서초구 반포2동 반포한강공원 달빛광장
Every Friday & Saturday, March – October.
6pm-11pm

Cheonggye-Cheon Time Slip Market 청계천 타임슬립 마켓
Address: Cheonggye Cheon, Near Gwang Tong Bridge. Jungak Station Exit 5.
청계천 광통교 일대(을지로입구역 1∙2번 출구, 종각역 5번 출구)
Every Saturday 430pm-1130pm
Every Sunday 4pm – 9pm
March – October

Cheonggye Plaza 청계광장 시즌마켓
Address: 14 Seorin-dong, Jungno-gu, Seoul.
서울시 종로구 서린동 14
May 19th, 20th, 21st;  6pm-11pm.
August 18th, 19th, 20th; 6pm-11pm.
September 15th, 16th, 17th;  6pm-11pm.
October 13th, 14th, 15th;  6pm-11pm.
**Cheonggye Plaza’s night market has seasonal opening. Please check the official website for more information.

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Seoul experienced the coldest winter this year with temperature falls to near record lows. For those who are visiting South Korea, fret not! Because we have prepared you a list of 8 best winter foods in Seoul to keep you warm and cosy throughout your trip. Although we would love to include the amazing street foods in the list, we figured having a proper meal at a restaurant would be a better plan when the weather is not performing. Trust us – you’ll feel much better in a restaurant that serves piping hot soup.

Simseun Tang Army Stew (Budae Jjigae)

Sim Seun Tang serves the best army stew in Seoul, at least in my book. I have tried various army stews across the country, but Sim Seung Tang got me return again and again. Their broth has a deep flavour that is irresistible. Remember to mix the soup, sausages and SPAMs with the buttered rice – terribly sinful but downright satisfying. Read more about the review here.

Sim Seun Tang 심슨탕
Address: Seogyo-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul. 355-210.
Nearest Station: Hongik University Station, Exit no.9
Tel. 070-4100-8318 | 5pm–1am |

Bukmakgol BBQ Ribs

You should know how it feels like when you are feasting on a humongous (as shown above, no kidding.), fall-off-the-bone beef ribs, when it is -18 degree outside. These huge ribs are slow-grilled until tender and succulent, it just falls off the bone without much effort to pry from the bone. Best pair with makgeolli (Korean rice wine). Read more about the review here.

Bukmakgol 북막골
30-2 Samcheong-dong, Jungno-gu.
중로구 삼청동 30-2
Tel: 02-730-0980 |930am-930pm|

Tosokchon Ginseng Chicken

This is on our must-eat food list for any first-timers in Seoul. Simmered in the milky broth to tender, the chicken is best known to boost your energy and vitality. I love how effectively the potent ginseng wine works to warm up my body. Their house kimchi is one of our favourites too! Read more about the Tosokchon ginseng chicken here.

Tosokchon Samgyetang 토속촌 삼계탕
85-1 Jongno-Gu, Chebu-Dong, Seoul.
Tel: +82 2-737-7444 | 10am-11pm |

Duroomi Kitchen Lotus Hot Pot

The lotus leaf meal at Duroomi is a go-to place when you are sick of the typical Kimchi-land food. Hidden in Samcheongdong, the restaurant serves contemporary Korean food using lotus leaves as the main ingredient. Their hot pot set lunch is perfect on a windy or snowy winter day, especially when you’ve exhausted your feet from exploring the neighbourhood. If you’re travelling with your folks, and when they complain about having too much kimchi, bring them here. Read more about the restaurant here.

At Duroomi 두루미 키친
27-6 Samcheong-Dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul.
서울시 종로구 삼청동 27-6
Tel: +82-70-4063-2787

Jaha Son Mandoo (Dumplings)

How about having some handmade Korean dumplings, or a bowl of dumpling rice ball soup (tTteok Mandoo Guk 떡 만두국) in the winter? Although it is a hallmark dish for the new year, the soup is enjoyed by the young and old all year round. It is a filling dish, also a great option to warm up your body in the winter. Read more about it here.

Jaha Son-Mandoo 자하손만두
245-2 Buam-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea
서울 종로구 부암동 245-2
Tel :+82 2-379-2648 | 11 am-930 pm|

Hwang Beef Intestines

You may have heard of the BBQ beef intestines in Korea – We do agree it does sounds gross, but we find it delicious! If you haven’t got the guts to give it a try, this beef intestines restaurant at Sinchon is a good place to start with. Marinated for more than 4 hours, these intestines are utterly soft, fluffy and buttery, bringing your Korean BBQ experience to a whole new level. Did we say it is also good for complexion and digestion? Read more about the beef intestines Read more about the BBQ beef intestines here.

Sinchon Hwang So Gop-Chang 신촌 황소곱창 본점
Seoul, Seodaemun-gu, Sinchon-dong.
신촌동 서대문구 서울
Tel. +82 2-336-7379|5pm-2am (weekdays) 5pm-4am (weekends)|

Guldari Sikdang Kimchi Jjigae

Photo courtesy of Nomad 21.com

This restaurant serves Kimchi Jjigae (Kimchi stew) to the locals for more than 40 years near the Gongdeok AREX Station. Their kimchi stew set costs KRW 7,000 and everything including the rice, stew and side dishes are refillable. It is eat-all-you-can here. A bowl of this spicy-sweet, utterly Korean comfort food during winter? Yes please, take my money. Read the complete review here.

Guldari Sikdang 굴다리 식당
181-45 Dohwa-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul, South Korea
서울특별시 마포구 도화동 181-45
11am-10pm

Villa de Spicy Tteokbokki (Spicy Rice Cakes)

Enjoy premium Tteokbokki (Spicy Korean Rice cakes) at Garosugil, the trendiest shopping district in Seoul. Customised your spicy rice cakes your way, adding only the ingredients you love. Our all-time favourite sides: Jjeol Myeon, the Korean chewy noodles and Mozarella cheese, these two will do some magic to your Tteokbokki pot. We love the trendy atmosphere in there – It is like having Tteokbokki while attending a fashion show! Read more here.

Villa de Spicy 빌라드 스파이시
541-10 Sinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea.
Tel: 02-518-1973

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