Üppiger Pelz, Folklorestickereien und ganz viel Bling Bling – denkt man an Mode aus Russland, dann tauchen im Kopf erst einmal allerlei Klischees auf. Zu Unrecht, denn die russische Modewelt erlebt gerade eine Revolution: Fashion “made in Russia” ist progressiv, stilbewusst und angesagt wie nie zuvor! Das beweisen junge Revoluzzer, wie der Shootingstar Gosha Rubchinskiy, der für seinen minimalistischen und authentischen “Ostblock-Style” regelrecht gehypt wird. Vielleicht etwas leiser, dafür umso poetischer macht auch dieses russische Label modische Schlagzeilen: Little Pushkin spielt mit dem Charme unbeschwerter Kindertage und versprüht stets einen Hauch Sowjet-Nostalgie …
“I understood that children are the best people on earth”
Wir haben Ganna Dyuzhnyk, die Gründerin des ersten modernen russischen Kindermodelabels, auf der Pitti Bimbo in Florenz getroffen: Im Interview hat uns Ganna verraten, wer genau hinter dem Namen Little Pushkin steckt, wie die Mode aus Russland in UdSSR-Zeiten ausgesehen hat und wie sie es sich zur Aufgabe gemacht hat, das Ansehen ihrer Heimat zu verbessern …
MILAN Magazine: You describe Little Pushkin as a label from Moscow but with an international spirit: nevertheless, is there something typical Russian which characterises your design?
Ganna Dyuzhnyk: Every human, consciously or not, carries that special code of the place where he or she was born. We, grown up, can live wherever we want, can reckon ourselves as citizens of the world, but nevertheless we can’t recast our past and become different people in terms of our basic foundation. So you’ll see typical Russian characteristics in everything of Little Pushkin. But the thing is that our “Russian” is very internationalized and corresponds to the nowadays world.
In our moodboards about 80% of references are from the Sovietic period and Post-Sovietic Russian period: literature, art, cinema; also famous people, such as Gagarin, Valentina Tereshkova, hieratic rock singer Viktor Tsoy, artists and poets. But our strong point is that we do our best to make this Russian Code as all-embracing, modern and clear to the people of all nationalities. It’s very important for us to show the world through our clothes that apart from the political side there is another layer in Russia – cultural, and it has no borders or limits.
MM: The world of fashion is usually divided into kidswear and adults’ clothing – Little Pushkin is all about merging the traditional baby-parent border. How does that express itself in your collections?
GD: Very good question. We produce such clothes that adults dream to wear. It’s a common thing when mums ask us if we have the same item but for adults. We don’t use kidswear trends because they drag behind the adults’ fashion for several years, so we are oriented only to the adult catwalk. It’s expressed in the fits, textile choices and in the philosophy of the collections. Of course we do think that our clothes will be worn by children and that it has to be comfortable to them, but we also think about its contemporaneity, actuality and progressivity. We do our best to combine adults’ fashion with the kidswear fashion world.
MM: “Carpe Diem” is your motto this winter. What is the idea behind this collection?
GD: “Carpe Diem” is the slogan in which we put the philosophy of today. Our “today” is connected with “yesterday” and “tomorrow”. Yesterday – is our past, our parents and parents of the parents. Tomorrow – is our kids. This inextricable connection of generations has inspired us in the new collection and was the main starting point in the lookbook shooting.
And it’s not only the life experience that children borrow from adults, but it’s more about the inspiration that we, parents, receive from our children. Speaking about the inspiration we mean all that complicated variety of experience. Not only happiness, but also difficult moments. We grow thank to our children. But this growth is not always smooth and pleasant, but it’s that very force that leads us to the future.
MM: When you hear Little Pushkin you immediately think of the famous Russian poet. Was Alexander Pushkin an inspiration for the name of your brand?
GD: No, here everything is simple. I called my son Pushkin when he was small and had very curly hair. But with the course of time people notice us as poetic brand, so, yes, may be nolens volens we base ourselves on the Pushkin heritage. Regarding to the “Russian” question. Pushkin was a very progressive poet for that time. He, in the manner of speaking, has invented the modern Russian Language. So it can be said that we lay claim to being the first modern kidswear brand in Russia.
MM: You never studied fashion design. Why did you decide to launch a childrenswear label?
GD: It’s an accident. When my son was born, the whole children’s world opened to me and I understood that children are the best people on Earth. I’ve wanted to make something special and cool for them. Production of adults’ wear is boring. Let the professionals do it.
MM: What did you like to wear as a child and does it influence you while creating new ideas for your own brand?
GD: I remember that, when I was born, in the USSR, there was a deficit on the one side and on the other side people took more care about their clothes. There was no great choice, so people wore more or less similar clothes, but I can’t say that it was bad. Because there were the quality standards. People were offered already tested and ready-to-wear variants. My mother has done her best to find the best clothes for me. She sewed and knitted a lot for me. I barely remember these clothes: a creamy dress with a giant pixy stool on it, knitted red pants with piping and a summer sun dress with small ships.
Later, in the period of Perestroika and the destruction of the USSR, we made such garments as skirts of washed denim and “bat-shaped” sweaters together with my mum. I think my love for clothes has been formed in the childhood. I always was one of the best dressed girls in the school.
MM: Of course, as the founder of a kidswear label you have a great passion for beautiful clothes. Can you tell us what you love except fashion?
GD: Oh, that’s a wonderful question. I love cinematography and perfumery. These are my main passions. In the times of studying and earlier I used to love literature, but unfortunately now I can’t find that very courage in the modern literature that has inspired me earlier. So, now only perfumes and cinema. I have more than 800 fragrances in my collection, and more than 200 DVDs on the shelves. My favourite film directors are Bergman, Tarkovsky, Kubrik and Jarmush. But I’m not only the art house fan, I love Terminator 2 and the Fifth Element. There isn’t anything better than a good mainstream.
MM: If Little Pushkin was a perfume, what would it smell like?
GD: This is a very unexpected question, you are kidding me, right? How have you found out about the fragrance? Because now we are working on the perfume Little Pushkin. It’s a long story, and I don’t think that we’ll finish earlier than in two years. We work with Firmenich. As I love perfumery and collect fragrances, for me it’s a very important thing to make a perfume. I’d love to make something new in this segment. Perfumery for kids exists on an initial level. Something was made by Zara, also there was something at Guerlain. There are different reasons for that, the main one is the WHO restrictions.
So, we’ll come back to this theme when we are ready with our fragrance. We are planning to make it for both kids and adults. Meanwhile I can say that if Little Pushkin was a fragrance it would smell like wormwood, heath, cool wind, warm sun, the delicate skin of a child and a sweet bun with jam. We’ll see if we are able to make our dreams come true.
MM: Thank you very much for the interview, Ganna.
Mode aus Russland zählt längst zur Fashion-Avantgarde
Und der neue Star heißt: Little Pushkin. Das Moskauer Label hat uns jedenfalls positiv überrascht und unsere Vorstellungen von der Mode aus Russland auf den Kopf gestellt. Wer sich ein Bild von der aktuellen Winterkollektion “Carpe Diem” machen möchte, kann dies auf der Website der Marke tun: Hier findet man neben der Kindermode, die zum größten Teil Unisex ist, auch eine Baby-Linie mit lustig bedruckten Basics aus Bio-Baumwolle.
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