In addition to the popular Vyshyvanka, there are many designers who are developing Ukrainian clothes. Last year, New York-based global fashion brand strategist Jen Sidari and Kyiv-based marketing director Alina Bayramova worked with USAID’s competitive economy program to invite Ukrainian design talent to New York Fashion Week.
In the fall of 2022, the number of participants was 6, two more than the previous season.
While the fashion crowd moves to Milan, the Ukrainian designer’s collection remains in the Archetype showroom, available to buyers and editors. Things like fringed yellow coats, comfortable knitwear, jackets with recycled denim pockets, corset dresses, floral dresses, and yellow and green work boots look much more uncertain after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. It radiates hope and faith for the near future.
At the same time as tears were being shed in the exhibition hall, a new sense of duty and pride was prevalent. In New York, Sidari and Bayramova highlighted the importance of supporting Ukrainian brands in crisis. These sentiments are reflected in an Instagram post from the Ukrainian capital of Kachorivska, one of New York’s top 4,444 brands. I urge the global community to continue to communicate with Ukraine at all possible levels. This is a necessary step to raise awareness of war, procure Ukrainian goods, support Ukrainian volunteers and the Ukrainian military, and help provide information at all levels.
Below are six Ukrainian brands acknowledged by the USAID Competitive Economy Program.
In 2010, at the age of 19, Frolov entered the Kyiv National Institute of Technology and started the Florov company while working as an outside stylist. While later teaching at his university, he completed his PhD without giving up on his brand. Ivan Frolov describes his line of bedazzled and body-revealing designs as “Couture-to-wear” and uses Frolov as a platform for self-expression and activism, especially related to gender equality and LGBTQ+ issues.
Anastasiya Rozova was born in Belarus, studied fashion design at Vichevsky State Institute of Technology and graduated in 2015. She joined Chereshnivska the following year and became her co-owner in 2017. The company aims to manufacture half of its products from recycled materials by 2024. The Fall 2022 collection features works made from military parachute silk.
91LAB | RITO
A graduate of Kyiv National University of Economics, Tatyana Abramova is the CEO and founder of two brands: Rito (founded in 1991) and subsidiary 91Lab (founded in 2018). The latter is more subtle but more modest. One of the highlights of the Fall 2022 collection is an ivory cardigan with flowing fringes and tassels.
Alina Kachorovska, the third-generation co-owner and CEO of Kacho Group, founded the company in 1957 as an accessories manufacturer. Kachorovska, the company’s own brand, debuted in 2015 and is known for simple yet bold designs that play with colour and texture.
Elena Burenina worked as a designer for a number of years before enrolling at Central Saint Martins in 2009. Her designs are clean-lined and minimal, with unexpected details such as a structured coat with delicate fringe or fabric hands emerging from sleeves.
The brand was founded in 2010 by Julie Paskal, who has a strong affinity for tulle, hearts, and flowers. It is known for its airy, feminine aesthetic, which is often achieved through a laser cutting technique. The designer, a graduate of Kyiv National University of Construction and Architecture, was invited to exhibit at Pitti W in 2014 and was a finalist for the 2014 LVMH Prize. Paskal, a yogini, founded Aerobika Athleisure two years ago.