The Ukrainian designers who stole the show at London Fashion Week

Three Ukrainian fashion designers were able to showcase their Autumn-Winter collections at this season’s London Fashion Week, despite the ongoing Russian invasion of their country.

With the support of the British Fashion Council, Ukrainian fashion labels TAMAR KEBURIA, J’amemme and GASANOVA showed off their latest collections in front an international audience in London last week. The show took place at the Old Selfridges Hotel, where invited guests were treated to neon lights and an open bar.

Perhaps what is most impressive is the fact that these designers have been able to put together collections against a backdrop of war in their home country. The audience, of which Vada was part of, was also made up of Ukrainians who had flown in from across the world to support the designers.

“The clothes we wear have the power to tell the world who we are and what we stand for,” said Lucy Frazer, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, in a press statement about the British-Ukrainian fashion collaboration. “The work of these designers is a testament to their creativity and resilience in unimaginable circumstances, as the two year mark of Russia’s horrific, illegal invasion approaches. I am incredibly proud that London Fashion Week can provide a platform to help showcase Ukrainian strength and style to the world.”

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TAMAR KEBURIA

(Photo credit: Chris Yates)

The collection Reflections pays tribute to the strength and resilience shown by Ukrainian women during the Russian invasion. The designer Tamriko Keburia was twice displaced by war, consequently bringing her own experiences as a refugee to the runway. In this collection, models dressed in black walked down the runway with mirrors attached their suitcases facing the audience. Keburia invited audience members to reflect on their own lives in the context of a refugee’s journey.

J’AMEMME

(Photo credit: Chris Yates)

The brand’s designer Julie Yarmoliuk, wanted to bring together the worlds of art and nature for the Autumn-Winter J’amemme collection. Named Le solstice d’hiver and inspired by the Ukrainian illustrator Okhrim Sudomora, the collection attempts to recreate the authentic shapes and textures found in the artist’s work. The contrasting shade palette of burgundy, blush and black, peppered with sequin sparkles, nodded to the coldness of autumn and winter seasons. Those familiar with the brand will note the lightness and geometry of the lines within the collection, as well as its textures, which are recognisable of the J’amemme label.

GASANOVA

(Photo credit: Chris Yates)

Celebrating family traditions, namely cooking spicy dishes by a crackling fire, the collection WINTER SPICE laid emphasis on comfort and warmth. Elvira Gasanova, Founder and Creative Director of the brand, sought to thread the rich and aromatic world of spices throughout the collection. The colour palette of deep burgundy, earthy brown, serene green and elegant blue reflected this vision, whilst shades of gold added a note of sophistication to the garments.

Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Support Ukrainian Fashion Initiative was set up as a means of helping emerging Ukrainian fashion designers. As a result of the initiative, 69 Ukrainian fashion brands have had the opportunity to show their collections created during the war on the international fashion scene.

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About Hadley Stewart

Hadley Stewart is Features Editor at Vada Magazine.