In March I received an invitation to FORM + FASHION featuring designers Xsenia & Olya. My quick response was an eager YES. These emerging artists have been creating a buzz in the industry for the last few years and I was excited to see what they were bringing to the table for fall in particular. A few days after the event there was also an opportunity for me to sit with the brand's business manager, Anastasia Seleznev, who works closely with the team from initial concept to final collection. Most of that interview will be the foundation for a future article, but it did open a window for me on the designers' unusual path to creating the collections I saw that evening.
Xsenia Runa and Olya Shishkina met while studying fashion design at Central St. Martins in London. Their collaboration since graduation has resulted in a unique line of garments created using cutting edge technology that is also easy to wear. Let's face it, today's woman wants to look amazing, yet be comfortable while doing it. In talking with Seleznev, what was most interesting was the hands-on process used to inspire the digital prints. Both collections were inspired by movement, but for Spring/Summer '13 it related to the physical world. They filled a bathtub with water, used their hands to generate small waves and photographed the fluid surface patterns created . For Fall/Winter '13 the focus was more conceptual - the movement of time. Images of clocks were layered into a unique collage which was then scanned into the computer. Images were digitally manipulated to hone a final concept and then used to create each season's original prints - a trademark of the brand that has propelled them into the public eye.
|Anastasia - Xsenia - Olya|
The evening's show opened with a warm welcome by emcee Devon Brooks and then it was on to the main event. Xsenia & Olya offered us 2-shows-in-one. First was a look at their current collection available in stores now. Then came a peak into what we could expect for fall. It's hard to sit through a runway show knowing it will be 6 months before you can add that favourite piece to your closet. This format lets you satisfy your craving for something new with the current season as well as whet your appetite for pieces you will get to add in the future with a preview of the next season.