A Sneak Peek Behind the Scenes of the Hundert’s Fashion Edition
What would our fashion edition be without letting a little glitz and glamour fall on the Berlin startup scene? To that end, we teamed up with the Hundert, the city’s leading startup print magazine, whose latest edition connects two focal points for creative ideas in Berlin — fashion and tech.
Katarzyna Ołdziejewska is project manager for the Hundert, and the Startups Meet Fashion edition — its fourth — was described by its editor-in-chief Jan Thomas as her “masterpiece.” She gave Silicon Allee an insight into the magazine, as well as some of the best unseen photos.
SA: Why did you pick fashion as a topic for this edition of the Hundert?
KO: Our concept is to present the most important players in the Berlin startup scene in different contexts. In our previous issues, we have presented 100 young (up to four years old) Berlin-based companies, and we asked 100 international entrepreneurs living in Berlin to give us their tips on the Berlin startup ecosystem.
But we are aware that the startup scene is not isolated, so we decided to explore other creative branches in Berlin that we had not yet covered in the Hundert.
Keeping this in mind the decision was actually very easy. It had to be fashion. Both scenes, fashion and startups, are shaping Berlin as a city. They are helping to build its culture, determine its pulse and attract particular people. But at the same time the industries are very different and in some ways they could not seem further apart. So it was very exciting to create a platform for them to meet, on the pages of our magazine.
SA: Having been at the heart of putting this edition together, you have been working very closely with the city’s fashion industry. What were your first-hand impressions?
KO: At the very beginning we just had this crazy concept: No contacts in the fashion industry, no experience in how fashion labels work, and no idea if they would co-operate with us. The startup community knew all about us already — however, we were total strangers to the fashion industry.
Luckily our idea appealed to the fashion specialists we presented it to. The most important one was Anita Tillman, owner and CEO of Premium Exhibitions, and having her and 13 other key players of the Berlin fashion scene as jury members was a very important factor in winning the trust of the industry.
So in the end, the labels were very open and helpful in fulfilling the idea for this issue, and we managed to do the 100 photo shoots!
We hope ‘Startups Meet Fashion’ is just the beginning of further collaboration between those two industries and can serve as an inspiration for further projects and exchange. Berlin is an appealing ecosystem and offers a breeding ground for new ideas, so we’re really looking forward to hearing about future collaborations between fashion labels and startups.
SA: What trends did you see in Berlin fashion? What’s hot and what’s not?
KO: It was exciting for us to be so close to the fashion labels, especially during the photo shoots. We brought together 100 Berlin -ased startups with 100 Berlin fashion labels for this issue of the magazine. All of the collections and items shown in the magazine passed through our office. At times the space was so packed with clothes we did not have any room to work. All that means we have seen a lot of different styles and outfits in the past few weeks.
But this still hasn’t made us fashion experts — we needed our jury to help us select the most important players in the Berlin fashion scene.
Something we have learned from dressing ‘ordinary’ people and not models was that fashion can look good on anybody! Even conservative entrepreneurs can pull of an extravagant piece of well-made and carefully-selected clothing. We were happy to see how open the entrepreneurs were to trying out something new and playing around with different styles.
For us it is not so much about following trends but rather creating a style that represents who you are. In the end it’s all about styling the items in a way that makes you as a person feel most confident in your own skin.
Get your free copy of The Hundert: Number 4, ‘Startups Meet Fashion’, here.