Designer Profile – Ovna Ovich

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OVNA OVICH is a creative studio based in Auckland, New Zealand, which was founded, by Designer and Director Marina Davis in 2012.  Over the past couple of years the label has been demanding the well-deserved attention of the fashion world. Having, presented their second ever collection at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia (2014), and more recently being nominated as finalists in the ‘Ones to Watch’ category at the Ethical Fashion Forum’s Source Awards, which recognises excellence in sustainable fashion globally.

 What instantly struck a chord with me, when I was first learned of OVNA OVICH, was the label’s aim to create sustainable and ethically produced clothing.  As someone who blogs about fashion, (one of the world biggest consumerist industries), I often lament on the effect that the industry is having on our world and it’s people.  Wherever possible I look to support local designers, especially those who support local suppliers and makers, so when I hear that these values are at the core of a brand, it is music to my ears! We must support it!

 Designer, Marina Davis, takes great pride in OVNA OVICH’s dedication to producing sustainable collections. Materials and processes are carefully chosen in relation to their qualities and impact. Primarily using eco-friendly organic fibers, and choosing to work digitally with their textile prints as it reduces ink, fabric, electricity and water wastage.

OVNA OVICH’s second capsule collection, Construct, draws inspiration from the juxtaposition of an austere built environment and the human body.

 “I live in a body made up of malleable, curved lines. I live in a building made up of hard, straight lines.”

 Designer and director Marina Davis explains more about the collection:  “Our surface designs for Construct are based on concrete and freckles, each bearing resemblance to the other but of completely different origins. One is hard and ever lasting, the other soft and ephemeral.”

 The collection is truly beautiful, minimalistic in style and made up of simple but strong silhouettes, with the fabrics used adding to the sculptural aesthetic of the garments. Colours are mostly monochromatic, with black and charcoal primarily used alongside accents of nude and glass green shades. In adding to the labels sustainable values one of the key pieces, the ‘Otsek Dress’ is designed to be worn in various ways.

 Beautiful, Versatile and Inspiring,  OVNA OVICH is definitely a label to watch, support and get your hands on.

Scroll down for our interview with Designer, Marina Davis.

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Tell us a little bit about yourself and how OVNA OVICH came about?

I grew up on an isolated farm down the bottom of New Zealand, which gave me a huge appreciation for the natural environment. It also gave me plenty of uninterrupted time to develop my creative thinking. Dance being my first passion gave me an awareness of the visual arts and my Russian Mother’s penchant for the dramatic drew me to decoration. Every single step (and a lot of hard work) down my path has informed my desire and decision to start my own journey with Ovna Ovich.

What inspires your design and creative decisions?

Inspiration comes from thoughts about our world that I want to pursue. My main objective is to frame my work with an idea, that people could connect with on a deeper level, rather than only aesthetics. Creative decisions come from gut instincts, ones that will have a less negative impact on the environment and people and then sometimes a lot of humming and harring and coming back to things.

We know that one of the key elements of your brand is the importance of sustainable and ethical fashion. Can you explain to us why this is so important to you and the OVNA OVICH brand?

I would not be working within the fashion industry if I wasn’t trying to help change the short-sighted go to decisions. So really it is of the utmost importance to myself and the brand (and the world) to produce clothing that is more sustainable and ethical through its production processes to end result.

How would you describe your personal style?

Whatever I feel that I will be comfortable in, it could be anything depending on what I need to do that day/night. I guess you would call that eclectic.

What are 5 essentials in your wardrobe?

Jeans, t-shirt,  an ugly jumper, a crazy coat and something to go for a run in.

Who are some of the people that inspire you and why?

My partner as he has a very inquisitive and knowledgeable mind. Also, my generation as they start to poke and prod at the systems that have been created before them.

If you could design a garment for anyone in the world, who would it be?

My mum and friends.

What are the top 3 resources which you turn to for inspiration?

Books, documentaries and the endless world-wide web.

What is next for the label? Where do you see the brand going in the future?

With each collection we hope to evolve bit by bit. Looking at visiting potential Australian stockists in the near future and then further afield after that!

Do you have any advice for anyone who wants to start his or her own business in fashion?

Get as much know how and savings behind you before you start and be willing to dedicate most waking hours to it when you do.