Issue 17
Olga Vilshenko
Russian-born designer Olga Vilshenko has already conquered the world’s
greatest capitals of Russia and England with her collections.
Now, she shares her aspirations for the future and the key to success with Playing Fashion.
hen in 2011 we met a young Instituto Marangoni graduate Olga Vilshenko for the first time, she was an upcoming ambitious talent, building up her career and becoming a star of London Fashion Week with her unique ethnical-inspired collection. Two years later, Olga talks about the experience she has gained and the lifestyle of a successful designer, whose dresses are loved by Florence Welch and Miroslava Duma.

THE VILSHENKO WOMAN loves fashion and she needs her wardrobe to suit every occasion of her busy life. Style comes naturally to her. I think that she has the same traits no matter which city (she is from), whether it is London or Moscow. She is strong and successful, yet feminine and sophisticated. She is a multi-tasker and she knows what she wants.

THE 3 MUST-HAVES FOR ME? I have a firm conviction that there is no woman who can do without a pair of classic black trousers and a white or cream blouse. For special occasions, there should be a perfect floor-length dress.

I LOVE THE MIDI BLACK DRESS with lace and chiffon sleeves. It is very flattering, and it’s a day-to-night piece. For this dress, we used three different fabrics – crepe, chiffon and lace under it so it feels very soft and sexy.

MY FAVOURITE FASHION DECADE is definitely the 70's – I would love to live in that fabulous and very feminine time!

MY ROLE MODEL is Raisa Gorbacheva, the first lady and wife of the first Russian President Mikhail Gorbachev. She was a very intelligent, kind and divinely beautiful woman with a great sense of style. She had to deal with a lot of troubles in her life, but she stayed strong and courageous. She is a great support to her husband.

ADVICE TO MY 18-YEAR OLD SELF? Keep your head up and don’t let people or circumstances misguide you. It is very important to let your heart lead the way.

MY LOVE FOR FOLKLORE and prints is not a coincidence. I really love nature and being in the countryside. My perfect day off would be at my country house, with my family around me. I really enjoy gardening, and growing my own tomatoes, cucumbers and other veggies in my garden – it is very healthy and good for the kids. I also enjoy working with flowers – this summer my special pride is beautiful dark red roses in my garden.

THE GREATEST ACCOMPLISHMENT for me as a woman is my family. As a designer, I hope my greatest accomplishment is yet to come – this way I can keep myself motivated. I separate my professional life from my family life.

LARGE BUSINESS REORGANISATION has been the main aim of the brand lately – we have done a lot to enhance our structure, revised our strategy and arranged new production facilities. We have 2 global headquarters in London and Moscow, so we can better cater to the needs of different markets. It’s been a tough job to implement the changes, but I am very happy we did it.

IN FIVE YEARS I would like to open the brand’s flagship stores in London and in Moscow, which would also house our own line of shoes and accessories.

Photography by Nicole Nodland;Styling by Darren knight / Ballsaal; Make-up by Angela Davis Deacon / Sue Allat; Hair by Bianca Tuovi / clm; Model: Kyra Green / IMG; Photographer’s assistants: Tom Griffith and Michaela Letano.
All pieces by Vilshenko Fall-Winter 2013/2014.
Words by Lidiya Kritenko
“The Vilshenko woman loves fashion and she needs her
wardrobe to suit every occasion of her busy life,” says Russian designer
Olga Vilshenko. We chose our favorite pieces from her Fall/Winter 2013-14 collection.
Designer Olga Vilshenko photographed in Moscow by Cody Rasmussen. Make-up by Anna Zakhozhaya; Sitting Editor: Svetlana Muller.

Be ready to roll with these intense beauties.