Model Turned DJ Soo Joo Park On How to Build the Perfect Set List

Soo Joo Park - Bottega Veneta
Photo: Matteo Prandoni/

“I started prepping as soon as I came back from my Paris trip for Haute Couture,” Model/DJ Soo Joo Park tells me over email. That was about a month ago. Her phone is broken but she’s agreed to an email/text type of interview in lieu our previously scheduled phoner to chat about her upcoming performance at the Bottega Veneta after party. “I'm still new to the game, so I need as much time as I can to build my list and work on mixing in and out of songs.”

“I was told that the show was going to be at the New York Stock Exchange and the space was going to be set up like an apartment; a cozy, relaxed vibe. I think I heard that and leaned towards music that's sort of warm and fuzzy,” she continued.

While the vibe at the apartment-style show has not necessarily been described as “relaxed” it certainly was momentous.

Bottega Veneta, an Italian-based brand, has never before shown in New York, but journeyed overseas in celebration of a new flagship store on the Upper East Side. It was big news that the house was showing during #NYFW, a city where many American designers have begun fleeing for fashion weeks abroad.

Soo Joo Park - Bottega Veneta
Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

The show featured takes on the quintessential woven BV bags we know and love and silky dresses and pajama-like sets that we’re positive we’ll see on street style stars in three…two…

And the after-party was an event in and of itself.

“I wanted to curate a playlist that would carry the excitement and energy right after the runway show [into] a fun cocktail party,” Park says. “I tried to choose songs that would capture the elegance and sophistication of the brand, with a nod to New York City.”

Tracks including St. Vincent's "New York" Kelly Lee Owen Remix, SBTRKT's "New Dorp. New York" feat. Ezra Koenig, Odyssey's "Native New Yorker", and “a funky remix of David Bowie's Golden Years by Jeremy Sole” were instantly in her mind when creating the mix.

“When I’m creating a playlist, I think about the timeframe and atmosphere, work out the timing and beats per minute for easy transitions between tempos, and just go through my music library and my head to play out the songs in sequence,” she wrote.

Screenshot that sentence and re-read before your next dinner party.

And what about getting ready? Is getting dressed for a fashion event one attends as a model different than getting dressed for a fashion event one DJ’s, I wonder?

“Comfort and not having too many accessories,” she says when I ask her what makes the perfect DJ outfit. “I'm constantly taking my headphones on and off and using my hands so I don't like drapey sleeves. And comfortable shoes. No one can see your feet [when you're dj'ing].

But don’t be fooled. Park is still very much into the glitz and glam of the whole fashion scene and relishes in the “getting ready process,” which ultimately had her wearing a peach rose suede dress with fringe details from the Summer 2017 runway collection.

“I like to take my time and enjoy getting ready. I'd say [it takes me] two to two and half hours from the moment I begin getting my hair and makeup done to the point I'm out of the door,” she says.

“If I have the luxury of the time, I love taking a hot bath with bubbles or oils [before an event]. I am obsessed with the Moroccan Rose Otto Bath Oil from Ren at the moment. Then I turn some tunes on, my go-to is disco, pour a little glass of wine, and begin hair and makeup.

And what will she never leave the house without?

“Besides my phone and a portable charger, a pressed powder like L'Oreal Paris True Match, and lip balm for never-ending social media upkeep and to blot out shine on my face.”


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