BUDAPEST SELECT – COLLECTIVE CATWALK SHOW
Abodi, Cukovy, Elysian, Kata Szegedi, MERO, THEFOUR and Zia budapest are showing their Fall Winter 2021/2022 Collections in a Digital Collective Fashion Show. In August 2018, the Hungarian Fashion & Design Agency (HFDA) committed to a three-year strategic agreement with the prestigious Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana (CNMI). Within this framework of the mentoring program for the fifth time, seven Hungarian brands will present their collections during Milano Fashion Week. The collaboration between HFDA and CNMI aims to give international visibility and acclaim to Hungarian designers with exceptional potential. Besides knowledge transfer and newcomer support, the Hungarian Fashion & Design Agency provides an important international network by creating and supporting professional opportunities for talented Hungarian brands under the agency’s umbrella brand entitled Budapest Select.
About Hungarian Fashion & Design Agency
The Hungarian Fashion & Design Agency was founded in 2018 as a subsidiary of the Hungarian Tourism Agency, with two key divisions: fashion and design. Some of its most important tasks are to enhance export, strengthen and develop the domestic manufacturing background, and cultivate the creative and professional knowledge that preserves tradition. Its emphasized aim is to execute an efficient professional coordination between national and international performers within the industry, which is essential for long-term success.
Born in Transylvania and raised in Budapest, part of a creative family, Dora Abodi showed early signs of interest in fashion and began to draw sketches in her grandfather’s studio at a young age. She graduated from French Mod’ International Art and Fashion Academy and obtained a Mastersin Fashion Design at Domus Academy Milan in 2013. She is finding her inspirations from her family and Transylvanian heritage, movies, travelling, popculture, literature.
Abodi loves to create beautiful things. Abodi is a combination of tradition and innovation and is deeply inspired by the designer’s Transylvanian roots and classic art inspirations. Abodi’s signature style can be defined as baroque futurism with a dark, magic mythological vibe derived from Transylvanian family and historic stories. Abodi’s icon is the TWIN UNISUS, a mystical and powerful creature, a winged unicorn. The Unisus is a unicorn with wings, a hybrid mythological animal. The unicorn symbolises something that is highly desirable but difficult to see, find and obtain, an extremely wild creature, beyond mere mythical imagination, being able to communicate with transcendental powers. The Pegasus is a mythical winged divine horse related to Greek Gods. Abodi’s Twin Unisus is the offspring of a Unicorn and a Pegasus, a super magical creature merging the ultimate beauty and power.
Each collection is a new chapter in the TWIN UNISUS EMPIRE and citizens of Abodi Universe are all part of the story: they can be whoever they want, an astronaut, a time traveller, queen or king of the most spectacular parties, teleportation expert, a dreamer, a galactic beauty, a mythologic animal, extraterrestial creature, an art lover, a movie star, pop idol or just a neo-romantic adventurer with an addiction to find the ultimate beauty. Through its unique creativity, contemporary style and creative evolution, the brand rapidly seduced demanding international fashion customers.
ABODI created a timeless and classy collection driven by the evaluation of the most important values and heritage of the brand. The ’between 4 walls’ state of mind is embodied in the leading patterns, the checks, reminiscent of the different rooms and internal spaces of living in different lockdown situations. The black symbolizes the endless nights spent dreaming surrealistic scenes or awake, the brown and camel refer to the nature and a kind of lure for simple and clean things. Cool lavender lilac and off white shades add a futuristic and modern twist. The royal purple is a reference to the ABODI’s Transylvanian heritage and the values of nobility, power, creativity, grandeur, mystery, independence and magic.
Carefully selected luxury fabrics, like wools, knit, vegan leather, moiré silk and vegan fur are treated with newly developed layering techniques, patchwork combinations, pleating in order to develop tailored looks balanced with feminine details and a modern, contemporary approach. The silhouettes are featuring power shoulder overcoats and blazers, puff shouldered dresses, oversize jackets, elegant and feminine garments with signature ’Cloud’ details. A new line of Made in Italy handbags with ABODI Twin Unisus mythos symbol, coordinated clogs-inspired sandals coming directly from the Swedish Calou and tip toe stilettos handcrafted in Budapest, beautiful enamel and golden layered buttons and pins handcrafted in Italy. Wearable expression of female power is the essence of the collection, dressing up for self-gratification and self-empowerment, travelling with full self-confidence armour.
Cukovy is a contemporary fashion brand born and made in Budapest, Hungary. The brand brings a cool and experimental attitude to urbanwear since 2014, while gathering inspiration from every corner of life where powerful women strive. Flexibility, function and environmental friendly attitude are the signature approach of Cukovy – to find the perfect combination for any occasion by changing any parts as a playful and sustainable gesture. Cukovy designs for the ageless metropolitan woman, someone who’s not afraid to show the middle finger, but brave enough to apologize. What you see is what you get.
The concept of function has developed rapidly since we all experienced a global pandemic. Practicality became a priority not only in our life, but also in CUKOVY’S upcoming collection with modular elements, detachable accessories and versatile design. Last season’s colours have evolved into a warmer shade, silhouettes shifted into a loose-fitted comfortable shape while still representing the longed inspiration of future nostalgia. Products are designed and made according to these values: sustainability, durability and playfulness. Everything is designed and made in Hungary supporting local craftsmen and suppliers. CUKOVY only works with high quality materials imported from Italy and premium goose down. The narrow product line includes puffer jackets, coats, vests and accessories, such as hats. With the puffers’ exchangeable elements, like sleeves and hoods, CUKOVY invites to play.
Boglárka Bódis graduated as an economist and worked in the Hungarian public administration in the field of international relations for ten years. In 2009 she started her designer studies at the KREA Contemporary Art School, where she graduated in 2013. In 2011 she won the final of an international designer competition launched by Triumph International. then the designer launched her womenswear brand Elysian in November 2012. The French word Elysian – meaning beautiful, peaceful, perfect – expresses the core values of the designer that she wants to represent in her designs.
The Elysian woman is fragile and strong at once, and she is aware of her femininity and proudly embraces it. A traveller who wants to discover the world. The brand is characterized by the use of delicate, weightless fabrics, refined elegance and feminine cuts. The designer creates two collections per year, that are presented in her atelier in Budapest where she offers made-to-measure service for her clients.
In 2018, the brand launched a new, ready-to-wear line based on the Elysian Bodysuit Concept. The main element of the concept is the bodysuit, which Boglárka Bódis considers as the corset of the 21st century combining the body shaping effect, design and comfort. Each piece of the Elysian Body Chic line can be combined with different garments like dresses, skirts and trousers of the Elysian Essential Collection. This way the brand Elysian offers complete outfits to its customers.
In 2019 the brand received the “Vote the One” award by Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana and Camera Buyer Italia. In the Spring of 2020, the designer unveiled the brand’s new add-on line: Miss Elysian. This line features monthly renewable capsule collections targeting the younger generation and new customers who would like to join the Elysian Women attitude.
Secret forest – Elysian’s upcoming fall/winter collection is inspired by the autumn forest and the change of colors in nature during autumn and winter season. Dresses with giant leaves printed on silk, pants and tops made of light wool fabrics, mohair knitted pieces, cashmere wool coats make the collection complete. Signature Elysian techniqueslike layering, hand pleating, the designer’s hand-drawn digital prints are present also in this season in this feminine but still modern collection. Color blocksin forest green, curry yellow, pastel grey and black, and high quality fabricslike silk organza,satin silk, light wool make the garments eye-catching.
Founded by Kata in 2009, Kata Szegedi is one of the most important Hungarian brands in the contemporary fashion scene. The independent, Budapest based label’s vision contains innovative, modern design for cosmopolitans who are selfassured and proud of their individual image; the ones who value the expression of originality in their day-to-day life.
Kata Szegedi came to spotlight before she graduated in 2009 at KREA Contemporary Arts Institute Budapest. That year she became the top young fashion designer at the Fashion Awards Hungary. In 2014 she won the Best Fashion Designer Award of Glamour Women of the Year. Kata Szegedi and Daniel Benus met in 2002 while studying at ‘Kisképző’ Secondary School of Fine and Applied Arts Budapest, where they became best friends. Daniel took an important role in the brand’s evolution from the beginning, since 2015 he became a full-time member.
The designer duo aims to create pieces full of passion, Objects of Desire. The love for contrasts is reflected throughout every single piece, experimenting a lot with silhouettes, shapes, textures and colours creates an eclectic, visual statement. Inspiration, drawn from contemporary art, youth culture and urban lifestyle, is combined with an emphasis on tailoring and the use of custom developed fabrics. The interesting marriage of streetwear influences, Hungarian sensibilities and global motifs present a playful and fresh attitude of the effortless 21th century women and men. The collections were featured in Helsinki, Berlin, Paris, Zagreb and Katowice Fashion Week; they have been worn by many celebrities and they appeared in many International magazines. The duo is on the right track to share their powerful and vibrant creations with a wider audience.
The Fall Winter 21/22 Collection of Kata Szegedi is an ode to craftsmanship filled with emotional memories, meaningful flashbacks from the past 10 years. The brand was founded in 2010 in Budapest, one of the main inspirations behind all the collections. The bittersweet and eclectic vibe of the city are undoubtedly a constant presence in every piece of the collection.
This season some of the most iconic and recognizable ideals from the past years were reinvented just as in our Spring Summer 2021 collection. Sculptural objects made from cashmere, wool, silk satin and organic cotton create a one of a kind layered texture that ends up with perfectly cut garments, blazers, pants and coats.
It is a new era for the brand, which focuses more on the development of fresh and unique textures and silhouettes. From this fall on a knitwear and a jewelry line have been added. The jewels are born from a collaboration with Balázs Kiss, an Hungarian designer who shares the Kata Szegedi’s vision when it comes to powerful looks and feelings. The breathtaking works of Frank Stella, Louise Bourgeois and the world of Thierry Mugler in the 80’s were a guiding light and an endless inspiration during the creation of all our moving sculptures.
“The MERO garment is a feeling that gives you the luxury of experiencing the woman with a thousand faces in you.” Péter Merő is a self-taught fashion designer, and thanks to his discipline and dedication, he is active both in the Hungarian and in the International market. As a ballett dancer, Péter lived in Berlin for 10 years, but he found his true calling during his years working at the Friedrichstadt-Palast theatre, where his passion was brought to life in the theatre’s sewing room, where he was able to see the tricks and trades of the profession first-hand: it was there that the dream of the brand started. The handmade couture pieces had a big impact on the brand that he later dreamed of with his twin sister, Merian Bianka Merő. The birth of the MERO brand dates back to 2014: the opening of its first showroom in Hungary.
The theatrical past has played a decisive role in the aesthetics of the brand. The designers have intentionally abandoned a trend-following approach, relying instead on their instincts, as they believe in long-lasting classic and timeless pieces with a touch of theatrical spices. In addition to the idealized female body, an important cornerstone of the brand is the timelessness of women’s values, authenticity and self-identity. The strength of details lies in the rich and high-quality workmanship of the brand. The MERO Woman is timeless, apparently mysterious, liberated and playful. A woman who has selfknowledge and confidence. She loves and respects her body, the same way she cares about her environment, and therefore her goal is not showing off, but self-expression.
A pillar of MERO’s services includes the Made to Measure, ”custom-made” pieces, which portrays not only the versatility of the brand but it’s also a hallmark of its high professional knowledge. The strengths of MERO can be found in the precise, high-quality craftsmanship and perfect cuts in its collection. Furthermore, a special emphasis is given to the waist area: the usage of belts has become a trademark of the brand. MERO creations have been worn by many celebrities, and they also appeared at the Oscar Gala, at the Berlinale, at the Cannes Film Festival and at the Los Angeles Film Festival.
The creation of the Arts & Crafts movement was the result of a 19th-century desire of style and its founders were among the first critics of the Industrial Revolution. Discouraged by the impersonal, mechanized management of society, they sought to return to a simpler, more complete way of living. Arts & Crafts existed in many variations and inspired similar groups of contemporary artists in Europe and North America, such as Art Nouveau.
The belief in the ability of art to transform society had a powerful impact on many of its successor movements. By following the principles of the movement, the brand aims to return to a more relaxed and exciting state of the fashion industry in this FW 2021 Collection. Breaking away from the current marketing-centric, consumptiondependent approach, the collection has been designed by adapting the creative, bold, free-mindedness of the 80s. Just as it was for the Art&Crafts movement, the designers believe they should slow down on overconsumption and add value to their creations.
THEFOUR is a lighthouse for self-expression, a kaleidoscope of human tradition, a mutation of heritage and invention. Anett and Marci, partners-in-crime since their university years, are the designers behind the Budapest based womenswear label. They could not be more different, but this is the driving force behind their brand. The pair, through a continuous dialogue, constructively channels their clashing energies into reaching one shared goal: designing clothing for maverick women.
THEFOUR creations are therefore giving astute visual answers to several of today’s pressing questions. This is how the individual pieces become relatable and carry empowering messages as they reflect on the currents of the Zeitgeist. This flux of ideas is, however, always balanced out with smart cuts and neat shapes. These keep the garments wearable, in spite of their artistic nature: they stand as singular and remarkable, yet sophisticated pieces for stylish, vivid women.
Memory – For the Autumn-Winter 21/22 collection, THEFOUR, driven by the realization that the past is capable of shaping the future, embark on investigating Memory. Memory is the faculty of the brain by which information is stored and retrieved – but the term also refers to an individual item of the past a person remembers. Bad memories may be reminders of trauma, while reminiscence may evoke nostalgia. Recalling past events and associated sentiments such as pain or joy is the key instrument of learning. Without memory, evolution is impossible: no discernable pattern may be recognized and future decisions lose their empirical justification.
Memory operates on both individual and collective levels, and forms the basis of digital technology as well. Intelligence, organic or artificial, requires stored and assessed information with the purpose of prompting action. In this capacity, memories serve as vital intermediaries between the past and the yet-to-come. THEFOUR’s Memory collection, therefore, explores the power of retrospection. In times of involuntary re-routing, it glances backwards in fashion, history, and the brand’s development, thus retrieved elements to be shown in a changed context, bearing new layers of meaning. The past teaches us what to avoid and what to carry on: this is how memories assist us in improving ourselves staying resilient. The transformative effect of memories entailed revisiting the messages on THEFOUR’s ever-recurring t-shirts and sweaters too: this is how MOTIVATED became STILL MOTIVATED and why EVOLVE appears.
In this vein, the collection’s aesthetics are reflecting things that are both memorable and continuously relevant. The shapes and cuts are inspired by the campy and futuristic approach of the ‘80s, the sexiness and nascent empowerment of women in the ‘90s as well as the ‘anything goes’ attitude of the millennium. The salient features of previous THEFOUR works return in the AW21 collection. The bold, seemingly randomized mix and match of fabrics is in fact the result of a carefully implemented pairing process: the edginess of the pattern design mirrors the blurring lines between past and future, street and casual, personal and communal, analogue and digital. Artificial materials, like softshell, are combined with natural fibers like cotton, silk and wool, with surprise occurrences of ethnic patterns such as jacquard cheongsam and African kente. Memory equally enables the use of selected deadstock materials like the paisley-patterned silk velvet, serving as a canvas for the designers’ characteristic statement overprints.
ZIA Budapest is the first Hungarian highstreetstyle brand, founded by Anett Csizmazia in 2017, it quickly became the favorite one of the fashion-conscious people in Hungary and it is developing rapidly. ZIA Budapest debuted at several Fashion Weeks – BCEFW, LJFW, MQVFW, her pieces are available in several national and European concept stores, and magazines often use her works as editorial material.
Three signature pieces burst ZIA Budapest into the Hungarian public awareness – Cruz, Barcelona, Kimono: they have appeared in every collection ever since then, evolving and inspired by the Anett’s travels, journeys and experiences. These are the three basic pieces of the brand that are an instant love for old and new customers as well. Designed, crafted and born in Budapest, ZIA Budapest is not just a brand, but also an identity, it represents girls who have real, exciting personalities, their own style and are able to laugh at themselves and the world around them. Not against, but together with the world.
The brand’s message is to strive to distance ourselves from the fast fashion market and buy value – and timeless design pieces that can be adorned with material and style for years in our wardrobes – classic, minimal yet average pieces are what ZIA Budapest offers at affordable prices. The brand easily combines contrasts with contemporary and classic features – which are elegantly balanced in an easyto-fit #highstreetstyle style. Stylish, unique, well-combined basic pieces appear in every collection, with whom ZIA Budapest wants to emphasize timelessness, showing that minimalist fashion can be both trendy and timeless.
City Legacy – We live in a cosmopolitan city, but our instincts would like to go back to a more natural, authentic world where we were not surrounded by a lot of things and everything was easier and clearer. ZIA Budapest is continuously building and monitoring itself. During our production process, we focus on making the world a nicer and better place. We make timeless and quality pieces, and these dresses will be the ornaments of your wardrobe forever. We believe that buying a ZIA designer piece is a good investment in sustainability and trend, and this way you can stop buying fast pieces forever. Sometimes, taking a step back can also mean taking two in the right direction.
CITY LEGACY collection is a trip back to our core. It is embracing our true love for clean, masculine, oversize, vintage lines with intricate feminine details.It’s being sustainable and conscious through timeless designs and ethical practices.
ALL IMAGES COURTESY OF BUDAPEST SELECT (Photographer IMAXTREE)