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Mercedes Benz Fashion Week: Julia Seemann

Clear contrasts: The Julia Seemann runway show at DER BERLINER MODE SALON.

Upon invitation from Mercedes-Benz and ELLE, the Swiss rookie designer presents her collection on January 19th.

Photos: Markus Nass & Getty Images

Statement steps on soft-polished marble.

Looks Rihanna snapped up straight from the runway, silkscreen design experiments or underground-meets-haute-couture creations: Julia Seemann, a new-on-the-scene Swiss design talent who honed her masterful craft in London, deserves the full focus of Berlin’s fashion connoisseurs. On January 19th, she shared her latest inspirations with the world at the runway show of her new collection, presented at DER BERLINER MODE SALON and hosted by Mercedes-Benz and ELLE.

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week: Julia Seemann.

Foto: Markus Nass

The talented designer with an eye for sharp styles has benefited from the brand’s “International Designer Exchange Program“, set up to promote excellent emerging fashion talents. Now, Mercedes-Benz and ELLE have invited the Zurich-based culture clash aficionado, previously an understudy of, among others, the London-based Vivienne Westwood and Meadham Kirchhoff, to prove that she deserves this trust and support: accompanied by harsh, monotonous beats, Seemann’s punk-style models stomp through the audience. Their look: strong, sexy, dominant. And often bristling with contrasting combinations that almost seem impossible – yet imbue Seemann’s sensual and contemporary styles with lashings of feminine power.

Impressions of the show – and the designer herself – in our short interview:

Video.

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week: Julia Seemann.

Foto: Markus Nass

Art + culture + music = design.

After art and painting, her latest collection borrows from yet another cultural technique to add a certain bracing bite: it pays homage to Hamburg-based all-girl band Xmal Deutschland. Back in the early 1980s, they managed to conquer the British indie charts with their German lyrics and edgy, angular dark wave sound. “This collection is very personal,” the designer reveals. “Since Xmal Deutschland are one of my favourite bands, I decided to contact their former lead singer – and she gave me her blessing.” The latter, Anja Huwe, now shares the front row in 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 patent leather.

They are treated to a fast-paced, extremely well-choreographed mix of patterns and materials, contrasted by the uncompromising live sound of Berlin techno duo Schwefelgelb: think huge, glen plaid sports jackets; flowing, frilly dresses; statement patent leather overknees; and even a reimagined biker outfit.

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week: Julia Seemann.

Foto: Markus Nass

Always in play and focus: cover designs by Vaughan Oliver, whose severe, stringent artwork for seminal record label 4AD – and the band celebrated in Seemann’s collection – 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.

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week: Julia Seemann.

Foto: Markus Nass

All about experience.

“My time at Vivienne Westwood and Meadham Kirchhoff proved extremely exciting and instructive. Although the two labels are very different – and differently sized – the actual processes behind the scenes are often quite similar,” the designer reveals. And this ambitious, challenging training certainly paid off at Julia Seemann’s crowning Fashion Week presentation: The result was a perfect blend of homage, craft and sprinklings of charming idiosyncrasy. After the show, the shy talent popped out for a lightning-quick bow – she’s already busy planning her upcoming agenda: stops in Paris and London to share her new collection with the rest of the fashion world.

Image Gallery.

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