Berlin Fashion Week: Here you can do without big brands

AThere can also be a carnival in Berlin. Marina Hermanseder, an Austrian in exile on the Spree, invites you to her Fashion Week show in Alt-Treptow – and it will be a costume show, the best in Cologne. The Vienna native hasn’t held a concert in four years due to the pandemic. Thursday’s preliminary program will feature dancers, acrobats and clowns.

“I just did what I wanted—it had to make me happy and people happy,” Hermanseder says before the show. As a child, she wanted to become a zoo director, and it shows. The runway is like a circus arena: dresses are decorated with colorful teddy bears, bows and rhinestones. The dress is made from Lego, with red roses growing from the bricks on the shoulders. And then there are her corsets and leather dresses with buckles, which are also worn by Lady Gaga, Rihanna and FKA Twigs. Fashion week in Berlin? Berlin Carnival Week!

The unusual appearance is a relief – if only because it features an internationally successful fashion designer. Otherwise, the big names in Germany’s biggest fashion venue are holding back: Dorothea Schumacher prefers to appear at New York Fashion Week these days, Puma is also there with a big event, Boss sales are constantly growing even without parades, Michalski is currently followed by many more projects , and Odeeh is in the commissioning stage – the collection first hung in the showroom in Düsseldorf and now in Munich.

Incredible pleasure: show by designer Martina Hermanseder

At least Helmut Schlotterer, who recently celebrated the 50th anniversary of his Marc Cain brand in Bodelshausen, is holding on. He takes the situation with humor: “We Swabians are the last ones to turn off the lights in Berlin,” he says before his big show in the big square of the big Berlin arena.

Lack of big players leaves Berlin cold

Berliners remain indifferent due to the absence of major players. Christiane Arp, president of the German Fashion Council, attends many shows of small brands with iron discipline. Their support programs and the Berliner Salon give young talent a stage—hoping and hopeless talent flows in constantly from the city’s more than ten fashion schools. Economics Senator Franziska Giffey (SPD) said at the FAZ fashion reception on Wednesday evening that the Senate supports the fashion scene with four million euros a year. Designers can apply for funding of €25,000. You can afford a medium-sized fashion show with a small number of models if you have an inexpensive venue. Hence the hectic four-day week: for reasons of economy, many performances take place in distant places such as Spandau.

Swabia in Berlin: Mark Kane was presented at fashion week.

Four Ukrainian designers are also supported, for example Bobkova. Her round pendants remind her of “Ukrainian fruits,” says designer Kristina Bobkova. She works with her team in Kyiv: “We want to make art even during the war, and we have to work.” She shows an ode to home with orange and yellow graphic prints reminiscent of a bird’s eye view of the Ukrainian landscape. view.

Many small discoveries

The 14,000 steps a day are worth it because there are so many little discoveries. Dennis Chuen, for example, is not organizing an Instagram event, but rather an audiovisual experience. Guests wear headphones with screaming sounds, and in front of the real eye there is a lot of black, rivets and folds, thread motifs depicting cobwebs and owls. In a time when runway and everyday fashion are virtually indistinguishable from each other, this is a work of art. South African Chuen, who has been living in Berlin for some time, says, wearing headphones of course: “I want to offer more than just a show. Not what everyone else does.”

Malaika Reiss shows off her fashion in the store's gallery.

Here you can always enjoy experiments. The two designers themselves appear at the premiere of the back2back brand: Yolanda Zobel and Marcelo Alcaide create “bella figura” on the runway – in the old C&A department store in Neukölln, which is now used for the super cool “Interventions”. series, which also includes New York designer Shane Oliver (formerly Hood By Air).

Many of the young brands that emerged in the 1900s have died down. People are eagerly waiting for Malaika Raiss, who has also done well in the bridal fashion industry. She returns to her youth—and stands in her bright new showroom with Chuck, a cardigan and a Winona T-shirt. Her fashion also looks so beautiful and effortless. It may not always be a carnival.

Source: Frantfurter Allgemeine

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