Fashion / Fashion News

All the highlights from Berlin Fashion Week 2024

The kapital is next: Berlin Fashion Week 2024 has commenced with a flurry of activity on-ground. RUSSH guest editor Kim Russell is amongst some of the fabled attendees who will descend upon the German capital for a week of haute sights. Labels like GMBH, Maria Chany and LUEDER comprise a portion of the emergent designers who will be showing during the 1st-4th of July.

Ahead of the week-long affair, we've rounded up a deck of everything not to miss. From avant-garde showings and designers in the prolific Berlin circuit, these are the best highlights from the runway.

Maxilimilian Gedra

As the collection name suggests, 'Stalactite' is the thorny, fractural lovechild of Maximilian Gedra. The protrusive, highly sculptural designs are a haute collection of black and white. Caped shoulders feature pointed ends large enough to take one's eye out. Headpeaces are intricate, mottled to obscure and frame models' eyes and faces. There are nods to Mugler Spring 1997 in the antenna'd eyewear, but the throughline is one that is inherent in its modernity. Pupa, and winged insects before flight come to mind, and Gedra's manipulation of form is one that resists convention.

 

Milk of Lime

Worn and precious, fragile and torn, Milk of Lime's consummate line of work reinvests in the neglected. Milk of Lime draws on the symbiosis between nature and conscious craft. The label operates out of Southwest Germany in proximity to its manufacturers and artisans.  The tighter the web, the more control over the production can be meted by ethical means. From the burial grounds of an old crematorium, the Berlin Contemporary winners Julia Ballardt and Nico Verhaegen presented their 'Current' collection. The thematisation of weather is a rustic one, and the label conjured up materials such as wool, chiffon and mesh in contrast with tautly tailored pieces.

Clothing shades resemble anything from a wolf's pelt to the moss and lichen tones of sheeny undergarments shown on models. In one look, floor-length silk is paired with a graphic tee shirt, an apt summation of the duo's working ethos. High and lowbrow coalesce in a single silhouette.

Namilia

Perhaps it was always going to make an impact: Namilia's I LOVE OZEMPIC look is the symmetrical extension of the label's own bratty, 'Good Girl Gone Bad' image. 600 ravers, queer icons and guests crowded into the Potsdamer Platz subway station to witness Namilia's line-up of 90's diva pageantry. There were itty-bitty pieces made in collaboration with Ed Hardy, cushiony club attire, and the signature Hardy rhinestoned caps and dresses, stoned to the gods. Graphic takes an inherently femme turn here, and the clothes become transformative. Archive and vintage garments are resewn into couture gowns. Streetwear is handcrusted with beading and sequin work.

In a critique against celebrity culture, Namilia asks - What happens to the diva when the limelight fades? As the procession continues in a swirl of deadstock and slogan messaging, we're not sure we know where the answer lies, but it's been a hell of a ride.

 

Anonymous Club

The show of the New York-based collective Anonymous Club, led by Shayne Oliver was part of the Intervention program. Oliver's vision is a pastiche of his eclectic, personal style and the archival sensibilities of Club Kid nightlife. Against a dark, half-dimmed landscape, models assumed a clinical stance. Eyewear made a dramatic appearance with cutaway sleep masks. Cushiony fronts featured largely in sequence with wearable blankets and draped sports polos. Streetwear converges with medical, off-white loungewear, and a more warped sport's match comes to mind. Slumber, as shown, can be dramatic.

 

Claudia Skoda

West Berlin is calling. Since the 1970s, Claudia Skoda has been an integral addition of the West Berlin punk movement, hailing from the artistic commune 'Fabrikneu'. Against a black and white retrospective, models stormed the aisle in kitschy, exquisitely assembled woolly constructions. The knitwear prodigy  presented her summer showcase at the slate-grey Tempodrum. Threading wool into all aspects of Skoda designs saw models in slouchy merino dresses, oversized sweaters and caped garments with sleeves trailing in yards behind on the floor. All of her creations stray from conventional knitting craftsmanship, utilising recycled Lurex, elastane and wool. On the soles, models opted for croc-remniscient shoewear, and slip-on flip flops in pastel.

 

 

GMBH

What would one wear to battle in the modern age? As the name suggests, the 'Resistance Through Rituals' collection by GMBH is filtered through a combat-ready lens. Strength was the pulsating throughline, evidenced in boxing-style leathers, jersey tops rucked half-way up and boots with planked shafts flanking either end. Models descended down the misted terrace of Tempodrom in Axel Arigato sneakerware which highlighted elements of chainmail and metal. Cropping and cutouts on the clothing deliberately draw the eye to the unfettered physique on presentation before us. The collaboration continues to borrow from the idea of resistance, highlighted in the stone-slate colour palettes remniscient of armoury. From lapel to hem, the tactility of this power is on full display.

 

 

BALLETSHOFER

BALLETSHOFER brews streetwear with the clean, taut lines of traditional tailoring. For a flyaway look, models donned earbuds of wire headphones on the runway. The German-based brand presented a collection in sharp black, white and greys at the Martin-Gropius Bau in the heart of Berlin. At heart, the seamlessness of old and new technique prove that modernity in apparel can be imbued in clothing with a playful lightness. The collection is a portrait of the moving world, slipping from past into present.

 

HADERLUMP

Against the Hangar 6 of Tempelhof Airport, 'AERO' by Julius Weissenborn and Johan Erhardt took flight. The Berlin Contemporary Winner and creators of HADERLUMP presented a display of aviation pride. The collection hailed pieces like bomber jackets, leather caps, patchwork uniforms in denim and materials of recycled parachute fabrics. Looks reflective of 20th century aviators, namely Amelia Earhart were honoured in 'AERO', with functional detailing and flight jackets. Silhouettes funnelled in, with narrow waistlines and wide shoulders shrouded in black, tans and blues, emblematic of pilot colours. Models wended their way through the industrial chrome of Hangar 6 to Pan-Pot's 'Rosinenbomber' track, a new age anthem chronicling Berlin's innnovation at large.

 

Olivia Ballard

Olivia Ballard's collection toed the line between the public and private division of life. The label is a constituent of form, drapery and colour in symbiosis with still-life. 'Le Lit' presents this phase of reverie through the bedside, when we settle down and drift into a lucid dream in the lull of rest.
In addition to the 27-year-old designer's presented work in response to Berlin nightlife, Ballard's showing is a presentation of restraint through her own ideals of the feminine body. Tops are artfully crumpled to evoke the texture of bedding and linen, and when we recall Ballard detailing, mattress padding, cushion, and seamy inserts come to mind. The dream within the dream, Ballard's collection takes a full-axis infusion of colour with tartan, olive-green and greys. By the end of the runway presentation, we must decide for ourselves which part has been imagined and which has been a fixture of our reality.

 

 

BOBKOVA

Ukrainian designer Kristina Bobkova founded her label at the age of 23. The designer creates from a touchpoint of relevance, 'regardless of time and situation'. Here, an asymmetrical dress is refashioned from a men's shirt. The brand philosophy draws its influence from quiet confidence as a declaration of quality and clean lines. The BOBKOVA silhouette is a reframing of smart casual-wear with punchy colour. Blazers, lapel shirt-dresses and waistcoats make an appearance in the runway presentation, which shines from the streetlamps of the night.

 

 

MARINA HOERMANSEDER

A sheeny-red dress in the shapewear of a beating heart. A moulded nude illusion follows in the same silhouette, fitted to the folds of the model's body. Everything Marina Hoermanseder sends down is lacquered and very intentional. The French-Austrian designer founded her womenswear label in 2013, following a meteoric rise in becoming one of the most revolutionary contemporaries. Her collection revives traditional disciplines of leather wet pressing and collaborations with local orthopaedic surgeons. The interplay of texture and form are joyous. Details like straps buckles adorn glossy shapewear, with referential nods to breastplates from Ford’s spring/summer 2020 showcase. Hoermanseder's collection is a lushly vibrant chamber for the camp and the artfully human.

 

 

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