I have a very long list tucked away on my desktop Stickies where I copy and paste the names of new brands I need to look into further, shop from or ensure that we profile on Who What Wear UK. Recently that list has been stacking up with labels from a particular part of the world and with our month’s focus on global style it seemed appropriate to shine a light: it would appear that some very exciting fashion happenings are coming out of Ukraine right now.
“It’s been an incredible growth—the creativity in the region is booming,” Daria Shapovalova, the Ukranian fashion entrepreneur and street style favourite, tells me. “When I co-founded Kiev Fashion Week, the entire fashion industry in Ukraine was being established, and after 7 years we have a fashion market full of bright, young talents. It’s always amazing to select designers to represent in our showroom in Paris, More Dash, where we work with stores from more than 20 countries, such as Lane Crawford, Barney’s, Matchesfashion.com.”
What is it about these burgeoning talents that are hitting the spot? Many of the wider region’s most famous designers have been at the core of an agenda-setting streetwear scene (think of Gosha Rubchinskiy from Russia or Georgian-born Demna Gvasalia of Vetements), but that isn’t the only aesthetic leading the charge. “I am sure the world loves Ukrainian and Eastern-European designers because they know how to use colour, how to create feminine clothes and make a unique product that stands out. In the end, the product is what is the most important,” says Daria.
Along with my own research and some of Daria’s hot tips, I’ve pulled together a list of Ukranian fashion brands you need to get acquainted with. See and shop them below…