We caught up with Polish fashion designer Anna to find out more about her fashion label Anniss and what to expect from her during London Fashion Week this September.
What made you want to take the leap from being an artist to become a fashion designer?
These two disciplines are very close. Being fashion designer also means to be an artist and being artist means that you have to design everything, everyday, everywhere. All your life is a kind of project – art project. A real high fashion is an art. Being a fashion designer does not prevent being an artist. I still do performance art.
I was always interested in fashion. As a young girl I was watching a lot fashion magazines, TV programmes etc. I liked to invent different stylizations and I had always problem with shopping. I never couldn’t find satisfied clothes in the shops, but I was dealing with that somehow. I always needed creations in my life because I was boring very quickly and I still do. Than I was studying a sculpture at the Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow and I discover good sense in 3dimentional. Than came performance art – which is also 3D J But the moment I started to be a fashion designer was my 31st Birthday – my mother bought me a Sewing Machine – that was the starting point. Finally I discover my real passion and complement in my creativity.
You have been involved in a lot of performance arts, how has this influenced your designs?
I can say that it still has very big influence on my fashion design. As I mentioned I still do a lot of performances. My whole life revolves around performance art – my husband Arti Grabowski is a recognized performance artist. We are travelling a lot on many performance art festivals around the world. For example next day after the show on LFW we are going directly to Vancouver on LIVE Festival and right after to New York to Grace Exhibition Space to perform.
Returning to the influence of performance art on my fashion design I can say that almost every action I see inspire me a lot. Open attitude, determination, body language, gestures, poses, everything gives me a lot of ideas, impulses and projects images in my head which I transform into my fashion design. I don’t design nice, funny or polite things. I want that every outfit I design has these attitude, determination, strong gesture.
You studied in Poland and England, having had insight into both cultures, which has influenced your collection most?
I had insight and I still have into a lot of cultures because of our international life J. It is hard to say which culture influenced me the most. In my blood is Slavic culture which is the base for everything. All the cultures based on this give a special mix which still build my temperament.
You say you deconstruct and reconstruct classical styles, is this because of your fondness of classical designs or an attempt to try and reinvent the overdone ‘classical’ look?
I say about this because of both reasons. I’ve always loved classical styles because it gives many possibilities for creations, for new directions, for reinvent. And I’m still looking for the possibilities of deconstructions. Yes, and I think that the term overdone ‘classical’ look is the best characteristic of my works. There is many possibilities, many ways and I’m going through my path deconstruct and reconstruct in my own way for continuous reinventions the overdone classical look.
Looking at your designs it is obvious that you studied in the sculpture department, was portraying this in your designs conscious decision?It had just happened. I passed the way from sculpture to fashion design which became this what I really wanted to do in my life. Now I feel that it comes from my blood, my heart – it is really my passion.
How do you want a woman to feel in your designs?
Not only woman J In GREATEST HITS f/w 2011/12 collection I start to design also for men. It is very important that people feel comfortable in my designs – this is the physical side. But also very important for me is this mental side - mood, self-confidence, determination etc. My designs are for confident, resolute, brave people and I wish that wearing my designs they can strengthen this self-confidence.
You work with the colour black a lot, is this because it is so timeless?
I always loved blacks. Off course black is so timeless and has many beautiful possibilities of combinations but also important for me is the meaning of this colour. The person identifies with the black colour is disciplined, independent, endowed with strong will and their own convictions – these is most important in my ideology of design. This is Anniss J
What item of clothing and accessory do you think each woman should have?
I think that every woman should have: sunglasses (the best are big black aviators J – but it depends from the type of face), high heels classic shoes and classic jacket – these are the starting point for many stylizations and gives really many possibilities not only in classical way J.
I also think that very important are shoes – even I can say that are most important because are closing point and the culmination of a whole design. That‘s way I also start to design the shoes for my collections. Till now I made a few individual models of shoes for GREATEST HITS collection. Lately I start to co-operate with Cockney Company from Krakow. They specialize in hand made shoes. This will be shown at LFW in September.
What fashion icon do you want to see wearing your designs?
I don’t have any favourite. I wish that people appreciate my designs. It's nice to be aware that you are doing something that others enjoy, appreciate it and feel good with this. This encourages to further creative work.
What should we expect from your future collections?
More determination, unconventional but comfortable fit – for women and men. Many creations, many deconstructions, like you mentioned really overdone classical look – J It is process still under construction. I know what I will show at LWF and I can say it will be strong and powerful. Later… it’s surprise.
How does it feel to be showcasing at London Fashion Week in September?
Great! I can’t wait J I hope you’ll enjoy it.
For more information please visit www.anniss.eu