Sunday, December 16, 2012

THE SOVIET INVASION

Russian designer, Vika Gazinskaya. Source Tommy Ton

It never struck me to ever go into a lot of research into other fashion industries outside the well-known New York, Milan, London and Paris fashion weeks until now. I have always had a vague awareness of various fashion weeks around the world, in more hidden but no less extravagant cities but they passed beneath my eyes with not much of a glance. However, in a sudden spark of luck I came across a Russian fashion blog about  emerging fashion designers from the Russian and Ukrainian Fashion Weeks leaving their mark in a largely Western dominated industry and I knew I had to learn as much as I could. What is it that drives these designers? Is it the absence of luxury during a Soviet childhood or the richness of their heritage that drives these designers to push the boundaries? Does their history influence their designs?

They may be widely recognised in their own countries, but the Russian and Ukrainian designers seem to gain little attention from Western media unless they showcase their collections in London, Milan, New York or Paris. It seems like they remain largely out of the spotlight until the decision is made to move to one of the four fashion capitals of the world. But with the emergence of ready-to-wear designer Vika Gazinskaya and couturier Ulyana Sergeenko in Paris, and spotlight on Russian editors Miroslava Duma and Elena Perminova, the Soviet Invasion is finally beginning. 

So here's a little introduction to some Russian and Ukrainian designers I find outstanding:

Ulyana Sergeenka Fall Couture 2012
Ulyana Sergeenko Fall Couture 2012
Ulyana Sergeenko, a well-known Russian art-collector turned designer, is incredibly new in the industry with just one exquisite and fantastical Couture collection in Paris but has already commanded the attention of the top editors in the industry like no other emerging designer. Perhaps it is foolish to compete against such established couturiers with little know-how, but Sergeenko's fixation on luxury and design and ability to surround herself with a highly skilled team has gained her respect fast. The black lace dress above is the piece I love the most out of the (in my opinion) mainly period-clothing looks. The above style.com photos are of her first and latest collection. Check out her blog here; there's a lot more substance to this designer than meets the eye.

Spring Summer 2013 collection by Vika Gazinskaya
Spring Summer 2013 collection by Vika Gazinskaya
Spring Summer 2013 collection by Vika Gazinskaya
The above four pictures are snippits from Vika Gazinskaya's (click for link) first read-to-wear collection which I absolutely adore. Like Sergeenka, this is her first collection showcased in Paris but her career has already lasted five years in Russia. Her designs are not only innovative and sculptural, but mix humour and sophistication charmingly into each piece. The inspiration behind the collection was clearly 'the weather', in particular, her sketched memories of the skies she while travelling through the air.

The 2013 Spring Summer collection by Ukranian designer Litkovskaya
The 2013 Spring Summer collection by Ukranian designer Litkovskaya
Ukrainian designer Lilia Litkovskaya (click for link) showed one of the best collections during Ukrainian Fashion Week in late October this year and is one of the fastest growing designers in Ukraine. Her inspiration of fragility and female sexuality was quite interestingly and impressively expressed through punched leather and geometric shapes. 

A La Russe Spring Summer 2013
A La Russe Spring Summer 2013
A La Russe Spring Summer 2013
A La Russe (click for link) is an ultra feminine and incredibly luxury Russian fashion house with creative director, Anastasia Romantsova, at its head. This brand is by far my favourite; all the looks are elegant but also wearable too. And don't the shoes remind you of Roger Vivier for Dior during the Christian Dior's New Look reign?

These 4 designers are the ones I found the most interesting so far, but do you know of any other Eastern European designers I should be looking at? Let me know!



3 comments:

  1. Alexander Terekhov has some amazing designs (very popular with the Russian fashion circle), very modern and cool.
    Valentin Yudashkin- he dressed Raisa Gorbachyova (Russian PM's wife) in the 80s.

    Take a look at Natasha Goldenberg too, her line is Tzipporah, some very modern/cool pieces and she's often photographed at the Fashion weeks- she's not over the top, more laid-back and bohemian-chic.

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    Replies
    1. Wow thank you! I'm looking at their sites right now :D i'm loving Tzipporah so far

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  2. All this look so amazing... there is no way Russian fashion to stay behing! And thank God, because just look at all these shappes :)
    Great blog! I was wondering would you like to follow each other? PLease let me know :)

    http://gamesoffashion.blogspot.com/

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