Meet Varvara - Prints in Motion
Russian designer Anastasia Makarkina is the creative force behind Varvara, a luxury sportswear company that she describes as conveying a “Russian accent.” Fashion lovers turn to Varvara for its extraordinary collection of prints, which are some of the most innovative and romantic in the world.
What's your name?
Anastasia Makarkina, but I design under the alias Varvara.
Where are you from?
Describe your signature design style in five words.
Exquisite prints with Russian soul.
What's your biggest source of inspiration?
Russian nature and fairy tales.
Do you think true innovation in fashion is still possible?
Yes, and it's important to be a part of it! I'm constantly on the search for new textures and fabrics, and I use 3D modeling to tailor my collections to have the best fit possible. This new technology and innovation makes moving fashion forward easier than ever!
What role does the commercial aspect play for you? Does it limit your creativity?
Without sales there is no creativity, and no way to have a basis for inspiration. The commercial aspect doesn’t limit our creativity - it actually gives us direction.
What other art forms inspire your collections?
Last autumn's collection was partly influenced by Russian literature: the t-shirt with the Tolstoy print, for example. The Banksy exhibition also provided inspiration for many of our new prints.
Do you prefer to follow or subvert trends?
I like to take certain aspects of trends and use them when they feel right in my heart.
Do you thrive off of spontaneity or careful planning?
Careful planning is important for business, but it's important to reserve room for spontaneous decisions too.
How do you deal with creative blocks?
I value my creativity greatly, so I try to manage and control my creative outlets in order to avoid big blocks.
Are you a romantic person?
Do you prioritize aesthetics or functionality?
I personally prioritize beauty and taste - it’s the basis of everything.
How do you think the fashion industry is going to change as automation takes over?
We live in a fast-paced world. That means that we're only going to start making new collections more and more quickly, as well as making faster changes and having quicker solutions to things.
Which fashion designer(s) do you have the most respect for?
I’m a big fan of Dries Van Noten!
Are your designs connected with or inspired by your heritage?
Yes, absolutely - being able to represent my heritage through my designs gives me butterflies.
Do you work better alone or on a team?
On a team for sure. You can create alone all you'd like, but in the end, you need grounded people who can rationalize your designs so that they mold well to the customer's desires. Balance is super important, hence the need for a team.
If you could travel anywhere tomorrow, where would you go?
What is your favorite thing to do outside of fashion?
I work as marketing director. I love marketing!
What is your favorite food?
Anything with fish!
What's your favorite month or season?
Spring is my favorite - it’s the birth of everything.
Check out Varvara's new collections here