Meet Ola Ola - An Adventure in Fashion
Russian designer Olya Ginzburg describes her brand as artistic, ambitious, and emotional. As a former bar and gallery owner and current proprietor of an edgy concept shop in the historical center of St. Petersburg, Olya can be counted on for a fashion adventure. Indeed, her brand Ola Ola regularly flaunts the constraints of fashion, playing with mashups of silhouette, color, texture, and pattern to create an entirely new point of view.
What's your name?
Where are you from?
St. Petersburg, Russia.
Do you think true innovation in fashion is still possible?
I think yes. It is in unusual combinations and also in very interesting fabrics that are also being created now.
What role does the commercial aspect play for you? Does it limit your creativity?
Yes, it limits it a little but not dramatically. I like to find ways to express my ideas, at the same time keeping in mind that many people may wear my clothes.
What other art forms inspire your collections?
I have many friends who are artists working in different genres, from painting to performance. They inspire me so much. I also like to invite them to collaborate on my collections to create prints or embroideries.
Do you prefer to follow or subvert trends?
As for the trends I try not to follow any forecasts. I do not use the colors of the year, etc., but I think that if you are in the stream and doing what you should, you will be on trend.
Do you thrive off of spontaneity or careful planning?
I combine both. In order for the production to work well it is necessary to have a plan and clarity in the task formulation, but without spontaneity there is no ease.
How do you deal with creative blocks?
I postpone the task that causes the block and focus on other tasks, oOr I set up a brain storm with my creative team. I also ask the production team to make a lot of samples with all their ideas in order to have something to start from.
Do you prioritize aesthetics or functionality?
I think you cannot choose only one or the other. Clothing should be comfortable so that a person feels attractive. But I don’t sacrifice creativity either. My task is to create comfortable and vibrant things.
Which fashion designer do you have the most respect for?
My favorite designer is Dries van Noten.
Did you undergo a formal design education?
When I was 16, I wanted to enroll in fashion design at UAL but decided to learn languages first. Therefore, I graduated in philology. Then I was engaged in other activities, but about 6 years ago I took several courses at LCF (London College of Fashion). It was unforgettable.
Do you think collaborations between companies and designers are cash plays or real attempts at innovation?
I think of such collaborations as attempts at innovation. For me it’s a double force, and it’s always interesting to see what happens.
Do you gravitate more toward designing for men or women?
I am a designer of women's clothing, but maybe in the future we will add a line for men. We released several models of unisex shirts, and they all sold out and were bought by guys.
If you could travel anywhere tomorrow, where would you go?
My second favorite city (after St. Petersburg) is London, and I would like to go there. Because of the pandemic my trip there was cancelled.
What is your favorite film?
There are many, but I will name three: La Grande Bellezza, The Young Pope, and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.
What is your favorite thing to do outside of fashion?
Spending time with my family and friends.
What is your favorite food?
Cherry. In the fall, I begin to calculate how many months are left before it appears on the market again in the summer.
What's your favorite month or season?
I love Russian summer when it’s not too hot. In general I like the change of seasons. I would not want to live where there is no big difference between the seasons.
What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?
I hug my son.
If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
To get into someone’s head or have the ability to instantly learn foreign languages.
Check out Ola Ola's new collections here