Postcards from Kiev : O'she and it's Delicate Charm

by Linda Bezos

Mercedes Benz Kiev Fashion Days has been a great platform for designers coming out of Ukraine. This year's stand out show from MBKFD was O'she, the brainchild of Natalia Koshely who wanted to create a lingerie collection that had elements of self-sufficiency and sexuality as part of the DNA. And looking at her first collection it is fair to say that mission is fully accomplished. The foundational colors of black and beige provided the basis for the overarching narrative of strong feminity with a touch of intrigue. The delicate materials added a sense of whimsy and playfulness while remaining true to it's foundational values.

Greece Rising : An Overview of Athens Xclusive Designer Week SS18

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by the Editorial Staff

Athens Xclusive Designers week (AXDW) has always been a staple of the Greek fashion scene. Due to the rich cultural and literary history, Athens as a city has always been more interested in its past as opposed to its future. This sense of deep history and tumultuous present has made Athens a brooding hub of avant-garde fashion. Despite a very small market the designers that come out of the fashion schools in Greece, tend to exhibit a certain sense of cosmopolitan aesthetics that are foundationally more universal than greek. So it is always a pleasure to see what the newer, emerging designers in AXDW are creating for the fashion week.

The Spring Summer 18 collection had some heavy hitters in the form of Anna Molinari and Vassilis Zoulias but between those two luminaries came brands that were pushing the boundaries while being functional. AXDW is as much of story of those brand as it is a story of a Greek revival. 

Here are the three brands that stood out during the fashion week. 

Avgousta Theodoulou, the Cypress-born-Paris-trained designer has been heating up the Greek fashion scene in the last few years with accolades coming not only within Greece but also China and the U.S.A.  And there is a reason she is such a jurist/purist's favorite. Her ability to construct lean silhouettes with a nod to the avant-garde is exceptional and will only get better as she becomes more and more entrenched within her art. Clever incorporation of elements from Jean-Louis Corby and Isabel Miramontes with the foundational aesthetics of German photographer Karl Blossfeldt were the inspiration for her current collection. While finding inspiration elsewhere is nothing unique within the vast fashion universe, Avgousta's needlework and design are worth a second look. The knits done by hand were all statement pieces and lean silhouettes added a layer of geometric intrigue to the pieces. Overall her work stood out the most during the AXDW because of her clarity of purpose which strongly suggested a well thought-out narrative as wearable art. 

Tassos Mitropoulos (TM) is more of a traditionalist than Avgousta and it is clear from his collection that his work incorporates couture-esque details into his functional wear. The foundational palette of his collection was black with a splash of color and vertical lines. But what stood out most from his rather well put together collection were the variations of evening wear. From leather pants to jackets to sheer gowns had an element of Alexander Wang meets the Greek club scene feel to it. While it is easy to see why TM is so popular in Greece, it is also worth noting that his training is italian and his cuts, sways and movements of the fabric comes across as such. TM probably had the most diverse traditional look set up for the AXDW but that does not mean it was repetitive. It was visually stunning and the added element of couture-esque details provided a bridge to all of his collection. TM seems like a designer who knows what he does well and does it with a sense of clarity as all good designers do.    

 

Dinara Sadykova's label Sadykova was another standout from the AXDW. This Greek-Uzbek designer brings to the table a unique mix of central Asian and greek aesthetics with traditional colors. used to accentuate lines and silhouettes. Her collection titled Tropical Curves are geared towards women who are already comfortable in their own skins. And that is one of the hardest demographic to appeal to as they already know what they want and how to get it. So to tailor a collection specifically for that demographic requires a sense of self-belief and talent to back up that self-belief. Sadykova seems to have both in abundance.

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