One designer unquestionably dominated this month's Mercedes-Benz Fashion Days Kiev event. Anton Belinskiy, a 27 year old Ukrainian, could be spotted just about everywhere at the spring/summer 2015 collections.
Even before the event got underway, his distinctive and colorful hand print dress was sported by a model front and center on posters for the platform. On the first night of the shows he won the Mercedes-Benz Fashion prize, which came with a purse of 3,000 euros -- the equivalent of a year’s salary for most people working in Kiev. And throughout the four day affair his latest collection was mined by Ukrainian it-girls wanting to wear something cool to other fashion shows. Not to mention the fact that Belinskiy was seen supporting his fellow designers at their shows after he had gotten his own collection out of the way at the start of the first day.
One of the few designers to show outside the official venue, Belinskiy -- who is quick with a smile and has a keen desire to learn from his peers -- already has proven himself to have innate showmanship skills. He chose to show his spring/summer 2015 collection at the Museum of Technology outside of the city center. Its odd assortment of machinery, celebrating high tech gadgets of the past, made a stark contrast to the designer’s bright primary-colored creations.
This season the designer was inspired by a famous Russian film from the late 90s directed by Valeriy Todorovskiy called “The Land of the Deaf.” On the runway this translated into strong color block designs in roomy shapes often outfitted with an abundance of fringe –like ribbons used to tie up sleeves, link tops and bottoms or pull together side slits on skirts.
The other powerful motif of the designer’s collection was the images of different brightly colored appliqué or printed hands spelling out in sign-language the phrases “you are beautiful” and “you are loved” in another node to the classic film, whose soundtrack played as a backdrop to this memorable show.
Belinskiy only started his signature label 4 years ago and it will be interesting to see how he takes these already instantly recognizable sartorial motifs forward in future collections. It’s not easy for any brand to come up with a new and original way to identify itself, but this designer got the formula right this season.