When Mercedes-Benz and ELLE call, the fashion crowd follows: at this season’s exclusive BERLINER MODE SALON event, fashion pros and 11 She’s Mercedes guests enjoyed an exceptional show by up-and-coming design talent Julia Seemann.
The location: a suave and sophisticated dream infused with a Parisian flair that quickly dispels Berlin’s icy winter. The assembled expert audience: focused, attentive and sporting the city’s understated chic. The show: a must-see Fashion Week event for all true sartorial connoisseurs. Behind the scenes, Swiss designer Julia Seemann is prepping her models for a parcours bursting with wearable eye-candy – after looks snapped up by Rihanna, silkscreen design experiments and underground-meets-haute-couture creations, the crowd is eager to see what’s next from this Zurich-based wunderkind, who has rightly earned her spot in the fashion media limelight. Impressions of the show – and the designer herself – in our short interview:
Art + culture + music = design. On location and just as perfectly styled: 11 guests invited by She’s Mercedes, intrigued by the whole experience. The impending show promises to venture into darker, more dramatic realms, according to Seemann herself: Her new collection pays homage to the Hamburg-based all-girl band Xmal Deutschland who, back in the early 1980s, conquered the British indie charts with their edgy and angular dark wave sound. “Xmal Deutschland are one of my favourite bands,” explains Julia Seemann. “So, I contacted their former lead singer – and she gave me her blessing.” The latter, Anja Huwe, now shares the front row at Berlin’s Kronprinzenpalais with, among others, model Franziska Knuppe, singer Anne-Catrin Märzke, actress Dorka Gryllus and YouTube star Sami Slimani.
Gothic, flowing oversize silhouettes and plenty of leather. The show starts with a bang – and the harsh, monotonous live sounds of Berlin duo Schwefelgelb. Punky models stomp their way through the audience, exuding strength, sexiness and a touch of dominance. Their culture-clash outfits bristle with contrasting combinations that almost seem impossible – yet imbue Seemann’s sensual and contemporary styles with lashings of feminine power. Huge glen plaid sports jackets are followed by flowing, frilly dresses, statement patent leather overknees and even a reimagined biker outfit. Always in play and focus: cover designs by Vaughan Oliver, whose artwork continues to be revered by London’s music and design scene. Above the hem and below the line, the collection soon gels into a coherent blend of radically wearable underground elegance that lets the designer’s formal expertise shine – even when she delves deep into the nether reaches of subcultural references.
From polished marble to herringbone parquet. While the charmingly shy designer thanks the gathered audience with a lightning quick appearance after the show, the She’s Mercedes guests get ready for a stop at Kaufhaus Jandorf, the main location of Berlin Fashion Week. At the venue’s stylish Mercedes-Benz Lounge, they share their thoughts on Seemann’s varied show. “It’s really remarkable what kind of show such a young designer has managed to produce”, says Justina Honsel. Designer and shop owner Olivia Dahlem enjoys soaking up the creative inspiration: Although she takes a very different approach, she loves to see “what’s hip right now”. Meanwhile, Julia Seemann is already busy prepping for Paris and London – to share her new collection with the rest of the fashion world.