Kseniaschnaider, CEO and creative director
Ksenia Schnaider
Kseniaschnaider, CEO and creative director

Deep Dive

When asymmetrical jeans by KSENIASCHNAIDER, the Kyiv-based contemporary women’s brand, landed on the radar of fashion enthusiasts and critics in 2016, it was just a drop in the bucket to what was to come in the deconstructed denim category. The straight and wide-leg anomaly, however, is one example of how co-founder and designer Ksenia Schnaider is ahead of her time.

A risk-taker that bends industry-wide themes to her own aesthetic, Schnaider has become the go-to source for out-of-the-box ideas. Constructions that mimic the look of fish scales, wader boots and cowboy jeans are among her original concepts. Finishes like hand-drawn scribbles and sprayed neon pink flocking speak to the brand’s youthful fun-factor, while Schnaider’s precision-like approach to upcycled patchwork denim and blouses made from fabric swatches result in wearable art.

There are more ways to enjoy Schnaider’s designs. This year, the brand feted the opening of its first flagship in its hometown and created a sustainable suitcase with Have a Rest. KSENIASCHNAIDER also collaborated with Ukraine-based upcycling studio Better.us on ’90s-inspired denim and 4-piece sets comprise of custom-made flare jeans and three basic T-shirts.

What is the biggest misconception that consumers have about sustainable denim?

That it is overpriced.

What can the denim industry do to ensure a positive post-pandemic rebound?

Support local productions and designers.

Skinny jeans: Over or a new staple?

For me, skinny jeans are over.

How can denim retail improve?

We do not need denim sections, because designer denim should be sold together with high-end products.

How many pairs of jeans do you own?

More than 20.

Which jeans do you wear the most, and why?

My KSENIASCHNAIDER mom jeans. They have the perfect fit for everyday life.