Living and working in a city like Berlin is inspiring in every way. As a designer, one focuses on different shapes and is sensitive to our everyday encounters. In the case of the Berlin-based label CRUBA, designer Mira von der Osten is not only inspired by the love she feels for the city, but is also committed to her region, obtaining her resources through local merchants. Recently, we had a little chat with her about her label and its latest A/W 2015 shot by Anna Rosa Krau.
In your own words, you have stated “CRUBA has been part of the great new Berlin journey, where creative industries have a pivotal role in the world’s need to build more wholesome urban environments.” What do you mean by wholesome environment, or how would you say CRUBA shows its part in this journey?
Wholesome environment in the sense of considering and supporting general well-being and common goods in order to create more vibrant local economies, which depend less on large corporations. We believe that supply chains are tethered to the region foster trust, help build value-based communities and bring people closer to themselves and each other. Cruba is designed and sampled here in Berlin-Mitte and we produce locally within close proximity of Berlin (our radius is up to 200 km). Each collection and piece stands for itself, yet builds upon one another. They’re pieces that can be worn from season to season as they are evolving. To consider from whom you purchase a garment is very relevant today. Every piece implies where and under which circumstances it was made. It has its own social and environmental impact, but more than that, buying locally is investing in your immediate community. Many of our customers deeply care for what kind of society they live in and thrive for and how they can be part of a local or regional community that also promotes healthy social relations. This is the journey we are excited to be part of here in Berlin.
What normally inspires you for a new collection and in particular the new collection of Fall/ Winter?
For the new season which we just showed in NY and Paris we took a microscopic look at nature and glamour. Here we were fascinated with the fact that glamour and the evolutionary development of it took a long time. For instance the sparkling blue shimmer on a black bug took millions, and I mean millions, of years to come into existence. Women today do not have the time to prepare and feel glamorous for a normal day. This longing for it was a great inspiration for this Fall’s collection.
In terms of my inspiration anything can get me started from a certain light creating a color palette, a certain rhythm, or an exhibition in a gallery. Fabrics themselves often unleash flows of inspiration and creativity. Here in Berlin one can also feel a ‘Weltschmerz’ – one of those great German words one cannot really translate. It describes a common longing or pain that is quite inspirational to me. You have to be in tune with everything to be alert to the smallest detail that can get you going.
Often we start with a color theme and choose fabrics with different surfaces. Since we have the luxury of having our sampling room here we can design early on three-dimensionally. This means we might sample a garment 3-5 times and at the end still throw it out. In this process you start having a relationship with this particular design and you might pick it up at a later point in time. Our design process is an organic one. We build new designs with respect to already existing creations.
Who do you see when designing?
The CRUBA woman has humor and enjoys fashion – there is enough in our world to worry about – fashion should not be one of them. Our customer is confident, has little time, and wants to be dressed for all occasions effortlessly, yet she is open to the artistic sensibility in design. She is alert to the details in the clothing and prides herself in creating a sustainable urban wardrobe.