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It's Okay to Not be Okay - Wardrobe Envy

Anyone watching "It's Okay to not be Okay" cannot help but be moved by the emotive storyline, entranced by the beautiful animations of the fairytales and totally in love with Ko Moon-young's wardrobe.

The costumes have been well planned to convey the character and her personality, eccentric and strong with a confident attitude and a sophisticated manner.   I'm in love with her outfits as much as I love the character and that's not just because she's a writer, well maybe I'm a little biased in that regard.

I've taken a section of my favourite Moon-young looks so far and looked for similar outfits to recreate a similar look;

Episode 1 - The Boy Who Fed on Nightmares

The first shot of Ko Moon-is a beautiful image of her standing alone looking over her shoulder in a black gown set against a glowing sunset.  Its an iconic short of a haunted looking character, as she listens to the voice of her mother telling her she is a monster who will be forever alone.

To recreate this look, I thought a black ankle length gown would be most fitting, for example something similar to this dress from the U Collection at Forever Unique (RRP £120)
We are more formally introduced to children's book author Ko Moon-young as she sits eating a rare steak in a roped off part of a restaurant.  Greeted by a young fan she is asked to take a picture and give an autograph.... an experience the little girl may never forget.
It's our first taste of Moon-young as the strong female, say it as it is character.  You can definitely tell she's not afraid to speak her mind or upset anyone whether that's because she doesn't feel emotion like others do or because she wants to challenge them to be emotive to try and draw out her own feelings, she portrays a classic elegance with a dark twist, after all to her the witches are the pretty ones not the princess.

Moon-young is dressed in a stylish coat style dress with heavy white cuffs adored with gold butterfly accents such as her ring.  The top is reminiscent of a 1940's style and the long skirt made playful by the cut and how it moves around her in a gothic way without being too heavy.  Her hair swept to one side, has an amazing glossy effect and I find it reminiscent of 1940's starlets like Veronica Lake but with a current day twist.

To hit a similar tone I would look for a classic cut dress in a vintage style, where contrasting collars are not available a fake collar could be added to give that same definition or by layering the dress with a white shirt.
These examples are from Coast andrange from £44.40 (on the left) to £49.50 on the right in their current sale. The lace ankle boots are from Kaleidoscope and are priced at £45, earrings are from yesstyle.com and retail for £2.33.


The second outfit that caught my eye, is in the book reading scene.  When Moon-young attends the hospital to read to the young patients, accompanied by a sand artist to assist in illustrating her story.  Her outfit again hits a gothic tone.  This is also where she encounters Moon Kang-tae in the hospital grounds and her obsession begins.

With her hair swept up and wearing statement earrings, she's very reminiscent of the witch character in her book 'The boy who fed on nightmares'.

Layering a tutu style or net skirt with a statement shoulder jacket would create a similar effect

The jacket is from Very currently at £26 and the skirt from Coast Sale at £19.50. The sandals which I like as the delicate strap gives ankle support are from Deichman for £22.99.

At the end of the episode, Moon-young changes things up slightly, moving away from the dark colours of her introduction in to a bright bold patter, when she visits her agents office to see copies of her new book 'Zombie Kid'.  The bold floral pattern and huge bow could easily overwhelm but here it works to amazing effect.  Flower patterns can often have a softening effect especially in pastel colours, but here the boldness and sharpness of the bright pinks and blues reflect the boldness of the character in one of the most romantic moments so far in the series.   To achieve a similar look I'd go for bold colours in a floral print similar to this design from AX Paris at £35

Episode 2 - The Lady in Red Shoes

Following his meeting with Moon-young, Gang-tae watches him brother prepare to attend her book signing.  Reluctant to attend himself Gang-tae is leaving the task to his best friend.  But as look or too much beer would have it Gang-tae wanting to see his brother happy accompanies him to the book store.  The elation and joy we see in Sang-tae is palpable.

The standout look in this episode is definitely the book signing outfit.

Becoming more playful but still darkly dramatic at her book signing event Moon-young.  As she debates whether to step in to help Kang-tae and Sang-tae following an outburst her every move commands the situation.

She stands up for what she wants no matter the risk to her reputation, in this scene I think she demonstrates something we'd all like to do in a confrontation, be cool, calm and quick witted enough to respond and show exactly what you are thinking.

To pull off this commanding look I would look for something like a military style coat similar to this one, I found on amazon.co.uk.  (Prices vary).  In the show this is paired witch over the knee socks/stockings £4.89 also at amazon, and ankle boots, these options came from Deichman and range from £20

The jewellery for this outfit includes statement drops earrings and and two statement rings.  I found these earrings from Ibince for £11.70 and these adjustable rings from yesstyle.com set of 6 for £1.60.

My last inspiration from this episode comes from the final sequence as Moon-young arrives at It's Okay hospital, having tracked down Gang Tae.

She recites the Hans Christian Anderson tale of the red shoes as she steps out of her car and walks inside.  These bright red stiletto heels with a slight platform would probably kill your feet but you's look amazing at the same time!  Similar versions are avialable from multiple sellers just like this pair on Amazon.co.uk for £25

Episode 3 - The Sleeping Witch

Walking in to the hospital as a storm rages outside, Moon-young looks elegant in another coatstyle dress.  Its a fetching electric blue/purple material that changes with the light.

It reminds me of Mary Poppins especially as she has an ornate umbrella which she drags along like fingers down a chalk board.  It also comes in handy for petty theft.

I always find a vintage look like this is hard to source, in my usual go to clothing outlets be it on line or in store (predominately online right now)  But as always amazon comes in hand when you are looking for something a little out of the ordinary.

This dress comes close in shape and style and would give a similar effect.
I love the synced in belt at the waist and the flowing nature of the skirt.  Prices vary for this range.  Pairing with red shoes gives a knock out look.


When Moon-young gives her first literature class to the patients she lightens her look but still has a sense of whimsey and gothic eccentricity as she discusses the reality of fairy tales.

The striking part of this outfit for me is the dramatic corset like belt.  The look is romantic and reminiscent of a mass up of snow-white and the huntsman, mixing famine and male elements to create a hybrid look which softens the character but maintains her strength as she rubs up against Gang-tae again making him uncomfortable with her frankness.


Accenting a skater dress like this one from very with a corset belt and pair of tan knee high boots would give a similar effect.   The dress is from very and retails at £50, the boots from Dune priced at £96 and the two belts are from a range on amazon starting from £10-£35.

Episode 4 - Zombie Kid

This is a real heart breaking episode for me, as it revolves around building and tearing down the connection between Moon-young and Gang-tae.  At the end of episode 3, Gang-tae just for a moment wavered and considered just having fun with Moon-young, but he immediately clamped down on the thought and returned to his closed off safe persona.

In this scene Moon-young looks classic and elegant in a spotted dress with a cream fascinator and clutch purse.  She is cool and calm in the madness of the rally scene and looks perfectly dressed for a wedding

This wardrobe friendly option comes from Dorothy Perkins and is priced at £35.  The fascinator is advertised on amazon.co.uk with prices ranging form £15.


Accented with high heeled ankle boots like these from Graceland boots at Deichman (£24.99). With the addition of gold/pear earrings (Debenhams Pure Luxuries £25) and a clutch bag (Accessorize £25)

When Moon-young returns to the hospital to take her father for a walk thinking it will appease Gang-tae, she is perfectly dressed for the summer, her look is innocent, demure and simple while the storyline is anything but.

The dress is almost ankle length with a round collar and buttons down the front.


As it's a summer linen / cotton style the drama comes from the black underwear that is hinted at through the semi sheerness / lightness of the material.

The gladiator style shoes, look to be a suede material. I really loved this outfit it's simple yet effective and matches her fairytale eccentricities.

As it's summer here in the UK there are lots of summer - white dresses to choose from available online.  My three choices come from Very and Coast and range from £25 to £65. The sandals are fro Very at £16 and Deichmann from at £19.99

I can't wait to see what looks are yet to come, and more importantly how the relationship between Ko Moon-young and Moon Kang-tae develops over the coming episodes.

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