Joana and Regina from the burgeoning Berlin fashion label Joana Christina tell us what the quintessence of their work is, why IT bags are still a thing and how they try to leave a sustainable footprint in the world of fashion. Joana Christina gained attention last year with their diverse selection of handbags as well as their newly added knitwear collection. But it all started with the Mountain Bikini, which she also provided for our editorial with TITLE’s favourite girl band CYBER. Click here to watch the CYBER editorial again.
Who is Joana Christina?
Joana Christina was started by Joana in early 2020 as a project to rework and upcycle fabric remnants.
With a big focus on bags we are now slowly exploring and adding different product categories.
Regina joined in the end of 2020 and brought knowledge and the love for knitwear with her.
What is your background ? Tell us more about how you got into fashion design.
We both studied fashion design in Berlin, where we met in the application process.
We grew up around creative mothers and got into sewing early on, that might be the starting point.
The earliest idea for the brand developed during Joanas graduate collection.
The Mountain Bikini top, which was part of the graduate collection gained attention over instagram and she offered made to order versions of it.
Where do you get your inspiration for your designs?
Before the pandemic made us adapt our daily life, the ideas were collected especially while traveling. Since march we have rediscovered our close environment. Everyday things suddenly bring ideas for being creative, that feels good!
What does sustainability mean to you and your brand?
Creating a change within the fashion industry is one of the reasons why this brand exists.
We first experimented with different bag styles in rectangular shapes to use up most of the fabric without having to cut anything off. With creating the bags we want to give forgotten fabrics and materials a second chance and purpose while keeping the impact and waste as low as possible. We both have experienced how fast and commercial fashion works and we now want to contribute to a change in the industry by making sustainability and individuality our motto for creative working. We believe that sustainability, transparency and waste reduction is the future and will bring a great change within the industry and the way we consume and treat products.
Can you imagine IT bags coming back?
We believe IT bags have never been gone. It definitely is something relevant, as long as it has the purpose that you invest in something that will last you a long time.
How are your products made?
The products are all handmade by us in Berlin and Franconia, due to our different locations. All woven fabrics are sewn with sewing machines, the knits are being made row by row on a hand knitting machine.
Who should wear the Joana Christina pieces? Who is your target group?
We count everyone to our target group. Our products should contribute to a sustainable and thoughtful consumption. We hope that our customers will connect to the pieces with a certain sentiment, to extend the product life cycle. Some of our bags are rare and only exist 1-2 times.
If you could choose one person to wear one of your bags or knits, who would it be?
Our biggest fan is probably Joanas grandmother. She is really into all of our products, as soon as a visit is possible again she will be surprised.
What are the plans for Joana Christina in the new year?
For spring and summer we are adding more clothing items to our products variety.
Our focus on bags will stay and we have lots of ideas to play around with shapes and the surface.
The mountain bikini will be back with some other exciting items.
Do young creatives in Germany get support of any kind, in case of self-employment?
Berlin has also the title of “foundation capital”. As founder of a company, Berlin and the surrounding area Brandenburg is the best location in Germany in order to receive support from the government.
We are still running this brand next to our day jobs but we can’t wait to focus full time on our ideas and products.
It’s probably not the best time to start your own business. How do you encourage yourself and your team?
We are motivated to do more by the positive feedback and all of the messages that reach us.
Seeing that people like what we create makes us incredibly happy. There are many things that can’t happen right now due to restrictions. But with everything being online we are lucky to have a platform to reach out to our customers
Foto : Joana Christina
Model: Leonie / Yannick / Camille (in order of appearance)