Founded in 2011 by design duo and married couple Ksenia and Anton Schnaider, Kyiv-based brand KSENIASCHNAIDER has put Ukrainian fashion on the world map. Committed to sustainability, the label upcycles an estimated 500 pairs of jeans, or five tonnes of textile and denim per year, winning them a place in the Vogue Green Talent shortlist in 2019.
“I am proud that KSENIASCHNAIDER was one of the first brands to start upcycling at the industrial level, even before many turned to this method for marketing purposes,” Schnaider told The Calvert Journal. “We have built our own production facility that specialises in recycling old clothes and waste, and developed our own methods and quality standards,” she added. Sold in shops across the world, the label is planning to broaden their product line with shoes, accessories, and lifestyle items. Below, we look at a few highlights of the brand’s journey.
KSENIASCHNAIDER’s first moment of fame came in 2016, with the label’s demi-denims collection. Combining culottes and skinny jeans, the model caused a furore across the world, being featured in Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, and Elle, among other fashion magazines.
In 2018, KSENIASCHNAIDER took fake fur to a whole new — denim — level. Disassembling vintage jeans into threads, the label created a cool blue beast, ready to protect its clients from the cold, as well as becoming the first cruelty free alternative to the shuba (“fur coat” in Ukrainian and Russian).
With another new take on jeans, KSENIASCHNAIDER stepped into the global spotlight once more in 2019. Combining one skinny jean leg with a bell-bottomed jean leg, the label reinvented the trouser silhouette.
Using between 60 and 130 PET bottles per suitcase, in 2021, KSENIASCHNAIDER created chic and shiny suitcases with spring green and turquoise-coloured handles and strips. This was the brand’s first venture beyond clothing and they intend to expand their range of lifestyle products in the years to come.