What does it mean to be an independent fashion designer and where does the name Annakiki come from?
My name is Anna so there is a bit of myself in Annakiki. My dream was always to express myself through fashion, to create a brand that would easily reach people’s imagination, and that would convey an idea of beauty and a positive attitude towards life.
How would you describe the Annakiki brand?
It is an independent brand and the DNA of it is contemporary and non-traditional.
Do you have a specific woman in mind when you create your designs?
I always look to a woman who has a personality and who likes to experiment and challenge herself.
UFOs, Looney Tunes characters and fur have all featured in your collections. Where do you find your inspiration?
Thanks to the cooperation of Looney Tunes, I went back to the 1980s, when I grew up, as those were the images that defined a generation. My goal was to bring them to life through Annakiki creations and it was like meeting an old friend!
You have participated in London, Paris and Milan Fashion Weeks. How do attitudes to fashion differ in each city?
I have done presentations in showrooms in Paris and London, never fashion shows. On the other hand I have been showing my collection in Milan for the last three seasons. These cities are all fashion capitals, but they are very different. London is full of innovation; Milan has a long history and exquisite handcrafted heritage; Paris is elegant and trendy.
What are your fashion week essentials?
To execute a fashion show impeccably – I am a perfectionist.
For your autumn/winter 2017/18 collection you used a lot of eco-fur. Is eco-friendly and ethically made clothing important to you?
Yes it is. For the AW18/19 collection presented in Milan I just used faux fur.
Which brands do you look up to?
I like Comme des Garçons, Yohji Yamamoto, Maison Margiela and John Galliano. Fashion is a rapidly changing and unpredictable industry, and trends are constantly changing. But these designers have always maintained their distinctive personalities, adhered to the spirit of self and kept a strong creative and innovative edge. I think this is very rare and valuable.
What can you tell us about your new collection?
The inspiration for the autumn/winter 2018/19 collection is a reflection of the current aesthetic fatigue and excess of fashion. In this age of rapid renewal, what is fashion? In this time of repeated flooding of fashion design, we have lost ourselves in aesthetic fatigue and excessive consumption. Both the modern pursuit of fashion and the rapid updating and popularity means ingenuity will be lost gradually. I want to transfer a code of aesthetic fatigue in a new design language by using mixed materials, fabric recombination and asymmetric design so garments can be presented in two different forms. I hope that every garment is worth being collected rather than being thrown away, and every garment deserves respect and to be inherited.
What’s next for the Annakiki brand?
Annakiki has a studio and press office in China, press offices in Milan and Los Angeles, and has good long-term relationships with well-known foreign buyers. In the future, we plan to establish stores in Milan and New York. We hope that more and more friends who like Annakiki can feel and experience our culture and clothes.