The second day of Kiev Fashion Days confirmed its protagonists’ talent at mastering mature yet cheeky designs; the golden thread seemed to be a conscious desire to move away from bling and obvious signifiers of luxury, towards subversive understatement. The creations sent down the runway on the second day seemed marked by sartorial bi-polarity, like fur and PVC, or a cross of red-carpet chic gone for a jog, while cropped skirts in fox fur seemed to suggest unspoken wilderness in the wearer, designer and perhaps, in an entire generation. Fit for feminist, on-the-go and on-the-rise women worldwide. Here are four head-turners of that day:
When you meet the designer, it is hard to imagine what creations will come out of the shy, doll-like young woman. Nevertheless, her collection was modern and intriguing. A master of flounce, she offered swirling skirts paired with matching, thigh-long sweaters, bright-red and blue velour day dresses, and a clever modernization of ultra classical shapes. Think classical Hollywood chic turned on its head with wide zip and unexpected checkered prints – modern and fearless, just like today’s Ukrainian women.
Barely of legal drinking age, Anna’s design maturity is outstanding. She layered subtle detailing reminiscent of the country’s history on sombre, stripped down silhouettes: traditional macramé tablecloth was morphed into headpieces, elongate silhouettes were brightened by chunky fox fur detachable collars and hemlines, so accurate when shown in the middle of a snowstorm. Filigree cut-outs suggested traditional patterns, as did oversized petals. Fit for playful yet no-nonsense femininity.
Of course, having Ukrainian super model Alla Kostromichova (whose side-act include Givenchy, Dior and Hermès) open and close your show helps. But the quality of a show ultimately comes from talent alone. She constructed the collection of a bold marriage of black and lamé. Classical black cuts like shift dresses, suits, and pea coats were quite literally fused with silver or aquamarine lamé: half a collar on a jacket, half a skirt, a clutch or a chunky headband offered osé pieces, wearable ‘round the clock.
Efimtchuk chose to play on a simple yet potent contrast: ample black dresses with neon trainers. The collection evolved into more masterful oversized design, including wide tops and even wider trousers, a silhouette allowed the sole embellishment of a narrow, British spread collar. The austere structure evoked early-day Japanese designers, and was contrasted by the bright pink shoes – as if to suggest that despite recession, local youth is dying to go dancing.