Fashion brands

The best Ukrainian fashion brands to know and support

It has been six months since the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Ukraine fights for freedom and unity, defends the values ​​of democracy and resists Russian aggression by all means. Every Ukrainian citizen adjusted his life, work and business to help the country and financially support its struggle for freedom.

At the same time, business owners are trying to stay afloat and create jobs to fill Ukraine’s tax budget as much as possible, even under constant bombardment and alarm sirens. The fashion industry is no exception.

Despite the fact that a significant part of garment factories are located in war-affected regions, Ukrainian designers are trying to reconfigure their businesses and relocate their equipment to other regions. Designers are donating to the military, creating special collections dedicated to Ukraine and supporting the country’s creative scene in these difficult times.

In time for Ukraine’s Independence Day approaching on August 24th, we’re rounding up our favorite Ukrainian brands worthy of your following and support.

Better

Better is an upcycling-focused brand founded by Julie Pelipas, stylist and former fashion director of vogue Ukraine. All items are unique and collections are usually quite small. Each piece is reworked, sourced locally from Ukraine’s thriving vintage scene.

During the war, Pelipas and his team transformed the brand’s website into a platform to help Ukraine’s creative industry find jobs and shelter. Through the platform, you can hire designers, photographers, videographers, graphic artists, artists and other creatives, who are now scattered throughout Ukraine, Europe and beyond, as well as give money for their needs. Clothing is not currently available on the site, but keep an eye out. A native of occupied Mariupol, Pelipas herself is actively involved in educational activities and informs her wide audience about what is happening in Ukraine.

Ruslan Baginsky

The hats of world-renowned headwear and accessory designer Ruslan Baginskiy are worn by all the major celebrities. He turned his brand’s Instagram page into an educational channel about Ukraine and released a special drop of two blue and yellow baseball caps. The national color of Ukraine has become “a symbol of freedom, courage, bravery and determination”. All production of the brand is located in Ukraine and continues to work and support 80 employees.

Baginskiy has already raised more than 1 million UAH (Ukrainian currency hyrvnia). All funds from the sale of this drop will be transferred to the Sergiy Prytula Fund, which helps the Armed Forces of Ukraine. “Be brave like Ukraine,” Baginskiy says.

KSENIASCHNAIDER

KSENIASCHNAIDER was founded by Ksenia and Anton Schnaider in 2011. The brand is based on the use of recycled materials, especially denim. In 2016, they released half-denims – jeans that immediately became an Instagram and street style sensation. Each reworked item is individually assembled and is one of a kind.

Since the start of the war, the 30-person team has been forced to leave Kyiv and suspend production. On the brand’s website, you can support them with cards of 5, 50 and 500 euros. These cards will be transformed into gift certificates after the war. Their website also provides information on how to help the Ukrainian army and children.

Anton Belinsky

Anton Belinskiy is a well-known avant-garde designer who was shortlisted for the LVMH award this year. Belinskiy is inspired by sportswear, the club scene and Ukrainian traditions.

Since the beginning of the war, his workshop has re-specialized in the manufacture of thermal underwear, balaclavas and other clothing necessary for the Ukrainian army. Belinsky also dropped a purple floral long sleeve with a photo of President Volodymyr Zelensky and his wife Olena holding their daughter, happy and smiling. The proceeds from the sale of the long sleeve are intended to help Ukraine.

In addition to supporting the country’s defense efforts, Belinskiy collaborated with 032c to launch the Free Ukraine t-shirt which sold out within an hour.

Bevza

Our own visual editor Tetiana Khvorostiana’s favorite designer, Svitlana Bevza, has been a pioneer in the Ukrainian fashion industry for over a decade. A few weeks before the war, her fall-winter 2022 collection debuted at New York Fashion Week, and the famous designer is expected to present her new collection on the New York catwalk once again in September.

The most important symbols of Ukrainian culture and tradition can be found in Bevza’s collections, such as jewelry inspired by the wheat fields of Ukraine, hoods dedicated to Olha who reigned over Kyivan Rus, and the remarkable knitwear of the brand inspired by Ukrainian craft traditions and focused on feminine strength and willpower.

O(FourFour)

O(FourFour) is a Kyiv-based sustainable swimwear brand inspired by natural shapes and objects. It uses regenerated ECONYL, an ocean material recycled into plastic waste.

One of its latest collections created during the large-scale war is VODODIL (or “the watershed”, the translation of the Ukrainian word, вододіл), a drop inspired by Ukrainian water – rivers like Bug, Ingul, Dnipro , Oril, Tisa, Vorskla, Prut and Synevyr. The water zone of Ukraine is picturesque and deep in every possible way, and the brand wanted to show it to the world.

Library

Bibliotheque is a women’s clothing brand created by Nika Malyikhina. The brand offers eco-leather dresses, woolen coats and suits. The clothes are made from natural fabrics and are sewn in small batches. The brand has a distinctive feminine and elegant aesthetic.

Malyikhina has organized a studio and exhibition space in Kyiv, where you can also buy things from other local designers and designers. The brand team stayed in Kyiv and you can go there by appointment as well as order online. 30% of the profits go to the needs of the Ukrainian army.

Zinka’s bags

Young bag designer Zamiatina Olha founded Zinka’s Bags just over a year ago, striving to express herself and embody her love for bags. The designer sews all items independently and gradually develops the brand. She recently launched the first collection of recycled handbags made from shirts. 50% of the brand’s profits go to the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

Broq

Broq is a jewelry brand created by Anna Kharabuha in Kyiv. The designer creates stunning jewelry entirely by hand, using silver and gold. Each unique piece is carefully crafted and designed to be highly portable. The goal was to create minimal pieces, “not the shiny sheen of novelty, but the scratches that history gives” – according to Kharabuha – making them truly unique. Broq is inspired by the power that comes with understanding uncertainty and constant change, the “cosmos – chaotic and beautiful”.

shur shur

Shur Shur is a Ukrainian hosiery brand founded with the aim of reviving the tradition of wearing everyday stockings: in all weathers, for all occasions, at all ages and in all styles. The brand was created in 2018 by Anei Savchuk. It now offers selected pieces at a special price, and the money raised is donated to @spunbond.fond, which in turn buys devices for children’s hospitals.

Basny rug

Basny Rugs was created by musician Volodymyr Benedychuk, who moved from Kyiv to the Carpathian Mountains and was inspired by local “hutsult” traditions. He stayed in the village of Yavoriv, ​​which is the center of carpet production in the region. Benedychuk redesigned the idea of ​​traditional Carpathian aesthetics and modern art by using traditional Hutsul technology in the production.

Savvina Knitwear

Artist Yaroslava Savvina discovered knitting as a stress-relieving activity during the global pandemic in 2020, and immediately caught the attention of local fashionistas. The hobby has become a business and she creates sweaters, skirts, shorts and more in soft jersey. Most of them have inscriptions with names of musicians and bands like Sex Pistols, Coil, The Smiths, and different symbols and signs.

Ochis

This Kyiv-based eyewear brand deeply believes in the richness of Ukrainian nature and its strong connection to the Earth. According to its founders, Max Havrylenko and Akim Karpach, the glasses are made from fully sustainable materials such as coffee and flower petals that grow in Ukrainian fields, such as sunflowers, marigolds and blueberries. Not only are they nice to look at, but they’re also comfortable to wear.

Unmere

Kyiv-based Unmere founder Margarita Protasevych says the brand is a tool that helps create individual identity with clothes made from the finest materials such as silk, wool, Japanese denim, metal and seashells. The garments created by Protasevych are ready to be mixed and matched, and allow the wearer to experience the creative process.

Ali Saulidi

Ali Saulidi is a footwear and accessories designer who launched his brand in 2010. He produces handmade footwear that adheres to minimalism, constructivism and functionalism. Before the war, he had a studio in Kyiv with a manufacturing showroom and a laboratory for technological experiments. After the invasion, he moved it to western Ukraine and put all his resources into developing and manufacturing tactical footwear for defenders of Ukraine.

His shop is currently unavailable, but you can support him with a donation and continue to follow his activity.

PIECEOFSHI®T

PIECEOFSHIRT is a local brand from the Ukrainian capital that sells counterfeit t-shirts. Originally, PIECEOFSHIRT started in 2017 with a store that sold vintage T-shirts of all kinds. After the war began, he began releasing t-shirts that feature reworked logos of Aphex Twin and Stone Island – printed with “Stolen Island” (aka Crimea) and Україна (“Ukraine”).

PIECEOFSHIRT also donates half of its funds raised from sales to the volunteer organization Kyiv Angels which helps meet humanitarian needs in Donetsk, Mykolaiv and Kharkiv regions.