„Mados kūrimas – malonioji mano darbo dalis. O štai vadovavimas savo mados prekių ženklui yra pilnas iššūkių, ašarų ir prakaito“, – pasakoja žinoma jaunos kartos Estijos dizainerė ÄLI KARGOJA, prekių ženklo AUGUST įkūrėja. Jos naujausi darbai pristatomi Bomberio e-showroome, o čia yra jos pačios specialiai man ir jums papasakota istorija. Šįkart pokalbis in English, nes Äli dar neišmoko lietuviškai, o ir šiaip kalbant apie globalius dalykus anglų kalba labai tinka.
Gavusi puikų mados išsilavinimą Paryžiuje, stažavusis žinomuose mados namuose Europoje ir JAV, ji grįžo į gimtąjį Taliną, kaip pati sako, iš praktiškumo. Įkurti savo ženklą namie, Estijoje, pasirodo, yra kur kas lengviau ir pigiau nei Paryžiuje, kuriame vis dėlto norėtų netrukus apsigyventi ir kurį vadina antraisiais namais. Apie Niujorką arba panašų itin dinamišką didmiestį negali būti jokios kalbos, nes Äli net ir didžiausiuose miestuose ieško ramaus laiko sau, kad galėtų netrukdoma kurti savo, atrodo, paprastą, bet labai nepaprastą madą. Ok ok, dabar apie viską iš eilės.
BOMBERIS: Äli, your designs are simple, minimalist, clean, yet very powerful and easy-to-recognize. How did you arrive at this kind of aesthetics? What or who has been doing influence upon your artistic development so far?
ÄLI: I have been an admirer of minimalistic, pure aesthetics for a long time. It’s hard to say how I arrived to appreciate this style. It is just something so naturally easy to the eye, simple and beautiful. I am very grateful to my teachers at Studio Bercot design school in Paris who greatly helped me to develop minimalistic aesthetics as a designer. They helped me to understand what endless possibilities this simple style hides inside itself.
BOMBERIS: Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania all have a strong minimalist presence in their fashion along with simplicity of cuts, oversized silhouettes, wide palette of darker shades and black, but much white on the other hand. Can you imply where does this come from? Is this our temperament, our Nordic climate, our complicated history or something else?
ÄLI: I think it comes from our modest nature. Our complicated history may have had a role in molding that shyness.
BOMBERIS: We do not know much of contemporary Estonian fashion. If you were to present it, what adjectives would you use? Give us a short overview of what Tallinn fashion scene is all about.
ÄLI: Estonian fashion has taken its toll by Soviet times. For a long time any kind of self- expression that had not pleased the regime was ill-advised. People were modest and looked very similar when it came to style. All that has delayed the local fashion scene a great deal. There is no distinguished style in Estonian contemporary fashion. It’s all over the place. I would call it a mixture of lavish Slavic style and more modest Scandinavian influences.
BOMBERIS: Tell more about your current SS2017 collection as well as coming FW2017-18 collection that you present at Bomberis’ e-showroom. What are the main inspirations, key words, your personal insights and global processes you have attempted to communicate through your latest works?
ÄLI: “August” SS2017 collection seeks to create an elegant gender-fluid aesthetics between feminine and masculine wardrobe elements. Comfortable everyday essentials with a modern twist of details are combining Nordic minimal silhouettes with workwear, uniform components.
“August” fifth collection which is dedicated to FW2017-18 combines oversized shapes, the tomboy charm and elements of 90s silhouettes to create an effortless ensemble for a woman who appreciates comfortable everyday classics with an edge. The signature fabrics of the 90s like velour in a sporty and sustainable key infuse the designs with a relaxed coolness.
BOMBERIS: Your own story is impressive: a lawyer who have decided to follow the dream and become a fashion designer. Having in mind fashion can be very tough at times, have you ever regretted that choice? Honestly, what challenges being a fashion designer brings along?
ÄLI: Despite tough moments time to time, I have never regretted the choice. Being a fashion designer is the lovely part, running a fashion brand is on the other hand full of challenges, tears and sweat. The main challenge is the right management of money flow. If you don’t have the funds, there will be no next collection. You need to stay down to earth as a designer, see what sells, listen to customer feedback, learn from your mistakes, improve the designs, details and fabrics collection to collection.
BOMBERIS: You studied at very well-known Studio Bercot in Paris, had internships at Nicolas Andreas Taralis in Paris and Maison Martin Margiela in NYC. Name several most significant things you have learned in each place.
ÄLI: Studying in Paris was truly an eye-opening experience. These three years really made me as a designer. I was taught how to play around with minimal aesthetics, push the boundaries yet keeping it pure and beautiful. Experiences at MMM and Nicolas Andreas Taralis were no less important for me. Prior to these experiences I had a passion for beautiful clothes, but that was about it. I couldn’t t imagine the work amount that goes into creating a collection, starting from research until the final stitches. The long hours at the studios, the sweat and the tears didn’t scare away my enthusiasm of creating something of my own. Moving back to Estonia after my studies and gaining experience at fashion houses was not a change but a plan all along. I just wanted to make sure what I am getting into.
BOMBERIS: What motivated you to come back to Estonia and start your own brand or had this always been an initial plan? How do you see August in five years from now? How do you see your own development as an artist and your brand’s development as business?
ÄLI: Moving to Estonia to build a brand was actually a practical decision. I had the necessary network here and creating a business was really simple in Estonia. The production cost prices are not comparable with prices in France, for example. I still have tight ties to Paris though, and I see myself living there in the near future. After my hometown Tallinn, it is definitely my favorite city and my second home.
BOMBERIS: We have many talented young designers and creative folks who are reading Bomberis, and they would appreciate your advice on working out the success story the way you did. What are the main things one should do in order to be successful in fashion design or anywhere else?
ÄLI: Have a strong vision and stay determined. There will be bumps in the ride that will make you consider to quit and get a day job like normal people. You have to keep believing in what you do. It is also important to build a good team around you – people who understand the business and the challenges that are involved and who believe in the potential of your brand as much as you do.
BOMBERIS: Bomberis is blog about big cities and their dwellers, their style and lifestyle choices. For you, what makes a megapolis? You have lived in several largest cities of the world – how did it feel?
ÄLI: I like versatility – I can enjoy big city life, but I do need my peace and tranquility equally. The big cities I have lived so far are NYC and Paris, and they are very different. Paris, although a big city, has a much calmer tempo to it, and that suits me well. NYC was great, but I would never see myself settling down there. The energy is super vibrant and crazy, I am a sensitive person, and I know the fast tempo, the massive crowds would eventually affect me perhaps not in the best way.
BOMBERIS: Finally, your own style – what is it all about? Are you only wearing your own works? What you prefer in your style decisions, why and what does it communicate about you?
ÄLI: I am lucky enough to wear my own designs, and “August” aesthetics obviously reflects a lot my own wardrobe choices. I avoid fast fashion and prefer choosing less but well. High quality items come with a price, I don’t mind spending more money on items that have a story to them and that last. My style is quite timeless, I don’t follow fashion trends. I like to keep it elegant and minimal with a discrete twist in construction, good fit, natural materials – all that “August” embodies as well.
BOMBERIS: These are truly inspiring thoughts. Thank you for sharing them.
Naujausią AUGUST kolekciją galite pamatyti virtualiame Bomberio showroome.