The fashion world has taken much inspiration from Russia over the years, but it's not really known as a fashion week destination. Yet, the annual fashion week in Moscow has been a mainstay of Eastern Europe for 15 years, partnering with Mercedes-Benz in 2011. With the meteoric rise of Gosha Rubchinskiy, Russia is again on the fashion map, which made the spring 2017 collections shown here at the Central Manezh exhibition hall last week worth the trek. Here, five designers who may be well on their way to follow in Rubchinskiy's footsteps.
Dasha GauserGauser, who is celebrating her eponymous label's 10th year, was thinking about going places this season. Literally. Dresses were emblazoned with huge lettering, spelling out "Russia," "China," "Mongolia," and other looks featured street maps and "SVO" (Moscow's airport) luggage tags. It was a fun collection that native Russians – and foreigners – will want to inspect closer next spring.
Yasya MinochkinaThe influence of the street is permeating the runways of the young new brands who showed here last week. However, there is one outlier – Ukranian designer Yasya Minochkina, whose aesthetic is on the other end of the spectrum. It's unabashedly feminine – there was florals and sheer gauzy fabrics throughout her spring collection – but the silhouettes are clearly made for a modern, chic woman.
Ksenia SerayaThe sweet collection was toughened up with details coming directly from the street and athleisure culture. Sheer hoodies layered over short rompers and extra-long sleeves on knits and dresses were a highlight.
Sorry I'm NotSorry I'm Not is the streetwear brand to watch. It's Hood By Air meets Vetements, and exactly what every kid in Moscow is coveting right now. Streetwear staples, like the bomber, were styled with corsets and men's suit jackets. It did sometimes veer into a space that seemed too referential – but there were still strong ideas that played well on the runway.
Saint TokyoSaint Tokyo was the show to look forward to all week and for good reason – the designers had their friends play a free concert right on the runway. But that did not steal away from the clothes. There were interesting necklines, and a new way to style a skirt – tied and fastened at the top and unbuttoned the rest of the way down to create a cape-like shape.