Vasilisa Kozhemiako

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Vasilia Kozhemiako, a fashionista by choice, is an extremely talented designer with a flair for perfection. She loves the middle eastern traditions but believes in giving it a modern touch. Her creation – My Kaftan – is a true reflection of this belief. Perfectly weaved using a unique material, her kaftans are a statement of innovation in itself. Vasilisa loves simplicity and logic, so you’ll find her creations to be elegant and yet sensational. She is the face of a modern woman who stays true to her style.

1. Tell us something about your passion for designing kaftans and how it all began?

When I came to Dubai, I got impressed by Arabic women and what they wear – how they cover themselves and at the same time stay charming and feminine; how they mix modern and traditional styles in their stunning looks. I tried to find the outfits of similar style for myself – something like abaya or kaftan. However, I was not ready to wear a traditional abaya because I wasn’t used to it; and there was nothing “in the middle” in the market, which would be suitable for Europeans. This is how the idea of kaftans came out. I decided to create a thing which, actually, didn’t exist.

2.What’s special about the material that is being used to design your creations?

One of my great achievements in this project is that I managed to find an exceptional fabric at Premiere Vision exhibition in Paris. It is a high-end artificial silk, which, actually, is better and more expensive than a natural one. This material doesn’t shrink, beautifully drapes and shines, it can be ironed, and, which is the most important. It’s extremely soft to the touch and has a cooling effect. Besides, I’m using some other exclusive fabrics from the best European producers.

3.What do you think this region needs in terms of fashion?

I think that it needs more variety, new shapes, new colours… There is no limit to creativity in fashion, and we can always invent something new. As I say, I’m in love with the style of traditional abayas, but I would try to modernize them. This region needs a fresh perspective.

4.Are there any expansion plans?

Definitely, there are big plans for the future. Right now I’m focusing on GCC countries, but I’ve already received some requests from Africa, China, Russia and Europe. Kaftans should be well-known worldwide!

5.In this competitive industry, how do you craft your niche?

I’m building a brand with the unique concept: it’s a fusion between Oriental and Western styles; it’s only about kaftans. In my interpretation, kaftan becomes an accessory which can be used to create a stunning look – from casual to a fancy one. It doesn’t completely cover, it is designed to create a slender silhouette with an Oriental touch. Besides, I’m using high-end European materials and innovative technologies, e.g. laser cutting. Thus, I feel that I have my own niche which hasn’t been taken yet.

6. What inspires your creations?

The Middle East itself: Arabic fairytales, Oriental culture, stunning nature of the desert and everything what is around me in the United Arab Emirates. One more thing which inspires me a lot is Moucharabieh – an element of traditional Arabic architecture, enigmatic ornaments which I use for the laser cuts.

7.Something/someone that you truly believe in.

I believe that there’s nothing impossible and we all have endless possibilities to fulfill our wishes and achieve our goals. The most important is not to be afraid, move forward and… create!.