Designer quickie: VAIN. - Lakatwalk - a fashion and lifestyle blog.

Designer quickie: VAIN.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Photographer: Mare Milin for    Elle Croatia

I had a pleasure to interview Ivan Badanjak, part of the VAIN designer team together with Timy Šarec. Ivan  is part of a truly a hard working, business focused , tech savvy and creative duo. He shared with me his vision for this young and perspective fashion brand. Read the interview below to find out more! 

What is the meaning of your brand name – VAIN?
VAIN is the anagram of my name – Ivan. Before I had a brand I was signing my designs with my first name however when I started to collaborate with Timy we decided to play with a logo which can describe my creative work to date.

How did you decide to launch a brand together? How do you get along and collaborate creatively?
Three years ago we founded Studio Ploha in which we collaborate creatively in the area of fashion, video and web design. We are working on the idea of founding a fashion brand together for a long time now, it just took some time for idea to mature and develop. VAIN fashion brand is the result of our creative maturity. We are working together on all areas of brand development and business from creation to realization and final product.

Photographer: Mladen Šarić | Models: Helena Babić and Tamara Pernar | Make up: Saša Joković

How would you describe the ‘ideal’ VAIN women?
A VAIN woman is a modern woman who uses clothing to accentuate her beauty.

 In one of the interviews you said that VAIN is the result of a long-term planning, how big of a risk is to launch a brand new fashion brand in struggling economy on such a small market as Croatia is?
We cannot influence on the economic situation. We felt ready and decided that we are mature enough to take this next step. Good ideas do not wait for good economic circumstances, you are ready for them or you are not. Croatian economic situation we try to offset with hard work, professionalism, persistence and creativity.

What is the price range you have set for your brand?
We define the price of our pieces based on the investment into good quality fabrics and quality of making. We think that we have set the realistic prices considering Croatian economic environment as we are currently focused on domestic market. We plan to expand our product offering to shoes and accessories as well but this will depend heavily on finances.

 Photographer: Mladen Šarić | Models: Helena Babić and Tamara Pernar | Make up: Saša Joković
Do you particularly admire any of the Croatian or international fashion designers?
Absolutely! There is many of them. We are equally inspired and fascinated by costume designers and fashion designers. When working creatively it is equally important to be original as it is to be up to date with latest industry trends even though the goal is to always try to come up with something new and fresh.

On last season’s Cro-a-Porter fashion event you have shown your first, quite successful collection which got positive reviews from fashion media. Do you plan to continue to do seasonal collection and show season ahead fashion shows or maybe like some international designer design pieces which can be worn across seasons?
Currently we are working on a new collection which we will show on Fall edition of Cro-a-Porter. Fashion shows are part of fashion industry tradition which we love so we will continue to show seasonal collections but in the future we would like to make our shows available to wider audience by live streaming them online. In between seasons we plan to launch capsule pre-season collections featured by smaller campaigns.

 Photographer: Mladen Šarić | Models: Helena Babić and Tamara Pernar | Make up: Saša Joković

Now when Croatia became an EU Country, how fast do you plan to start selling on international markets and what is your sales and marketing strategy for it?
Our strategy is to first build a good base for our brand on local market. We want to create national recognizable fashion brand as a priority. In the next three years we plan to redirect part of the profit and invest it into showing on international fashion fairs in fashion capitals in order to present our brand to other, bigger markets. In parallel we plan to continue to develop strong logistic and production so we could source our expansion properly and professionally.

Based on your work so far you seem to be taking your brand building in a more professional and planned way then some of your more experienced colleagues especially when it comes to investing in marketing, PR and online platforms for promoting your brand.
Building a unique, recognizable and modern fashion brand is our imperative. Working in Studio Ploha, building our clients brand we gained a certain experience which enabled us to get the clear vision for direction, look, feel and direction for our own brand.

We present VAIN as modern European brand which successfully balances in between commercial and creative out of the box product. Carefully planned promotion is the most important tool for successful brand positioning on which we collaborate with top industry professionals.

What is your near future and long term plan for the brand development?
Our daily work has become extremely dynamic so our plans are being executed in a very short time period. One of our goals is opening our official selling location in boutique store ROBA in Zagreb. This is a big challenge and an opportunity for us as we will get to communicate directly with our clients and get their feedback. 

 Photographer: Mladen Šarić | Models: Helena Babić and Tamara Pernar | Make up: Saša Joković

Also, we are preparing Fall/Winter 13’ collection which keeps us creatively obsessed for weeks now. In near future we plan to also design men’s collection, start presenting our brand to international markets and expand our product portfolio to accessories, shoes, jewelry and perfumes.

Photographer: Mladen Šarić | Models: Helena Babić and Tamara Pernar | Make up: Saša Joković

Follow VAIN on Facebook, Youtube, blog , Instagram and web.

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