Folk customs, craft traditions or other social phenomena: Ukrainian design often combines contemporary design with references to its cultural heritage. In the second part of Ukrainian designers we won’t let out of sight, we showcase some of these.
In the editorial team of Hype&Hyper, we follow a lot of talented Ukrainian designers, artists and brands with unique visions, and we have always tried to give them a platform to showcase their work. In light of the current situation, we feel it’s important not to lose sight of them and support them as much as possible! In our newly launched series, we’ve gathered together these characters and brands that are dear to us.
Dima Ievenko launched the IENKI IENKI brand in 2016 to create leisurewear pieces that are innovative in design and quality alike. The brand is best known for its puffy jackets, but its range also includes long skirts and headscarf-like hats that evoke folk traditions. Their collections often draw inspiration from motifs from the far north, or for example, their latest Shearling collection is inspired by the keptar, a garment worn by a Ukrainian ethnocultural group for centuries. According to the latest news, IENKI IENKI has teamed up with the National Antarctic Scientific Center of Ukraine to create new expedition clothing for the Vernadsky Research Base team members.
“Today in Kyiv, we woke up to the sound of explosions,” the brand wrote on its social media platforms. “But we are not afraid. We will not give up,” they continue.
Photos: Ania Brudna
Stylist and costume designer Sonya Soltes has worked in the fashion and film industry with several players in the creative scene, including fashion brands such as KSENIASCHNAIDER and Have A Rest. She launched her own conceptual brand three years ago under the name Lutiki. In the beginning, her product range consisted of various garments and some jewelry, for which Sonya often turned to film references for inspiration. However, with each new collection, the number of clothes has decreased, and now the designer focuses exclusively on jewelry. One of its iconic pieces is a gold-plated bracelet resembling a scrunchie, or the so-called Scrunchie bracelet, which returns in different versions in all Lutiki collections.
“Oranta (one of the most important sacral symbols of Ukraine—the Ed.): an indestructible wall, a cover and a testimony to our thousand-year history. Let us pray and support our fellow human beings. Let us fight for the future,” Sonya Soltes shared her thoughts on her Instagram page.
Victoria Yakusha founded her architecture studio, Yakusha Design, in 2006, with a philosophy the founder refers to as living design or living minimalism: her interior designs materialize as minimalist and sensual spaces that connect deeply to nature. As part of the studio’s work, Victoria Yakusha finally launched her FAINA furniture and lighting collection in 2014, with the mission to preserve and promote Ukraine’s unique craftsmanship and cultural heritage. Following the philosophy of living design, the FAINA collection introduces new furniture and design pieces twice a year. Such as the clay-based ZTISTA chairs and tables, the feminine Domna armchair, the PLYN sofa and the vases made with the ancient Ukrainian technique called gutnytstvo, all of which we have previously featured in Hype&Hyper.
In response to the current situation, the following lines can be read on the brand’s Instagram page:
“Our Ukraine. Her beauty is her open soul, sincere and authentic. Today, we, Ukrainians, are again reminded that the quest for freedom is a perilous journey. But rooted in our land, we find strength. In our home, freedom—is of the greatest value. In our hearts—free spirit roams, untamed. Thanks to every one of you, who stands with Ukraine now and shares on what is happening here.”