Berlin Fashion Week is kicking off and, next to it, fairs like Premium and Seek are taking place. Last Tuesday, the Czech Centre Berlin opened its own showroom with a selection of designers based in Prague.
According to Monika Štěpánová, the centre director for fashion and design, the scene in Czech Republic is blooming. She explained to me that this is the first time such an event has taken place, and they also have a couple of designers exhibiting at Premium.
“The Czech Republic is in a transition process in all industries, and the fashion/design industry is, in a way, more established. They are ready to go to foreign markets, they have the same level of competitor countries. What is important now is to develop the distribution, to find the buyers, the shops and this is the step we are taking now.”
The Centre is hosting 8 designers, and different from Premium, where only buyers can actually order, here you can buy the pieces directly from the designers – very inviting for the fashion savvy Berliners.
Lukás Pattermann is one of the very successful designers of the day, the creator of menswear label Pattern. No wonder he already sold a few pieces at the opening, with neutral colors and outfits that I could definitely see some Berghain goers wearing.
As I wanted to know more about Lukas, he told me that he makes everything on his own, from designing to sewing, a craft he learned when he was 15 years old.
“To be honest, I didn’t like mathematics or physics so I chose to go to art school when I was 15. I had no idea that I was going to actually learn how to sew, so it was a very big surprise. And, later on, I went to study fashion at university where I could develop more. As for my clothes, I always try to create something I personally would wear. I make it, I wear it, I like it – then it is good to go!”
Another designer Eva Burketová, from ODIVI (which in Czech means “from Eva”), also had a wish to make clothes she could not find on the market, pieces that could suit her passion for winter sports but, at the same time, have a fashionable high end.
“I really love snowboarding. I took high fashion fabrics and mixed them with more functional ones, so you can have a complete look when you go to the mountains, for example. I also make all clothes with simple cuts, I use geometrical figures and then play with them around the body.”
Going further in the showroom, I met jewelry designer Nastassia Aleinikava, who makes beautiful pieces made of ebony wood and silver, very artistic and delicate. Surprisingly, Nastassia actually graduated with an eyewear collection but, unfortunately, her collection was not shown here in Berlin as she will present it for the first time this autumn in Prague, right after her graduation.
“I studied jewelry design in the University of Arts in Prague, and started my brand while in school back in 2010. But for my graduation, I chose to make an eyewear collection, so I want to work with these two products at the same time.”
Nastassia was the only one lucky to have started her jewelry brand whilst in university, but she said to me that this is not usual and though she has had the brand for five years now, she considers herself still at the very beginning of her career.
Overall, it was very refreshing to see many different approaches to fashion and original styles, especially coming from a country that we usually never really think of when it comes to fashion.
Many others are exhibiting at Czech Centre Berlin, and you can find the whole list here.
For those wanting to know more, meet the designers, and maybe even buy your next party outfit, the showroom stays open until the 11th of July.
Czech Centre Berlin
Wilhelmstraße 44 / Eingang Mohrenstraße