Dress for success: Austrian womenswear label Charactre

“I have always been overwhelmed with the feeling of creation, starting from baking a cake to knitting scarves when I was little.”

Christina Nahler studied in Esmod and worked for Vivienne Westwood, learning everything precisely about the design and handcraft skills that are needed for creating fabulous fashion before teaming up with her business partner and entrepreneur Agnes Aistleitner in order to establish the Vienna based womenswear brand Charactre that is proud to be known for working with high quality materials and high quality finish in Europe. In our interview she tells us all about their target group of a generation of leading women who deserve a fresh mindset on how to dress for success and what makes a piece of clothing complete in her eyes. The collection is presented by model mairmaxbo photographed by Yannik Steer.

 

What sparked your interest in fashion?

The possibility to dress to be whoever I want to be has enlightened me since my very young years when I started to disguise in my parents clothes. Also, I have always been overwhelmed with the feeling of creation, starting from baking a cake to knitting scarves when I was little. When I trained in tailoring and illustration, I realized how much I enjoy to see how ideas come to life through my own hands, stitch by stitch, line to line.

On top, fashion is a vital link between the inner and the outside world.  It can be seen as the result of a filtering process of information, impressions and emotions. They have a raison d`être in the fashion world and I like how these thoughts translate into things you can wear.

 What are your favourite materials to work with?

Mostly I prefer to work with natural materials, like silk or wool of high quality.

They respond naturally in the process of making.

Really important to me is a fabric’s feel on my skin. And the way the garment reflects my movement…in fact this is what makes a piece of clothing complete in my eyes.

 

“Fashion is a vital link between the inner and the outside world.  It can be seen as the result of a filtering process of information, impressions and emotions.”

 

 How do you define an “artist” in today’s world?

I see the artist´s profound values and thoughts as a „big bang“ that drives him/her to create a personal universe.  This universe grows as it correlates with the outside world.

For me, an artist is characterized by the awareness of his/her distinctive perception of this correlation and the ability to make it tangible for the audience. And therefore to create yet another stimulus of correlation.

 

“I seek inspiration in the people I see on the streets.”

 

“We dress a new generation of businesswomen – confident and aware, with a sense of style and just the right amount of special.“ What has attracted you to design women businesswear in particular in the first place?

To be honest, it was my business partner Agnes who came up with the idea in the first place. I chose to look at it as a very new task- since the work I did previously was not guided by the aspect of wearability and sellability. I did a lot of research and the closer I looked at our target group, the more I felt that we are just at the beginning of the awakening of a generation of leading women who deserve a fresh mindset on how to dress for success. I want to be part of this molding process that holds endless opportunities.

Who is your muse, your inspiration?

I have to keep my answer very general:

No matter if I stroll down Brick Lane in London, ride the tram in Vienna, visit a craftsman’s workshop in Paris or a traditional ceremony in Prague… I seek inspiration in the people I see on the streets. It is definitely those anonymous encounters that provide me with a constant flow of ideas.

 

“Shoes have the power to make a look complete- but they can also break it apart.”

 

Your favorite fashion – accessoire?

My favourite accessories are shoes and rings. Shoes have the power to make a look complete- but they can also break it apart. They underline the way you walk and how you carry yourself through life.

Rings can be a subtle yet determined way of expressing yourself. People will always look at your hands at some point. I personally like to pair inherited pieces with designs of Vivienne Westwood or small artisan labels like Joanne Burke or Polly Collins.

 Favorite place?

My tiny hometown in the Tyrolian alps.

 Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

I see myself in a leading role of a generation of fashion designers who have redefined the idea of fashion and fashion business.

www.charactre.com
www.instagram.com/charactre

 

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