We dare you not to fall in love with this lingerie brand. In fact, if Sheer’s staff and friends had got their way, we would have been running a little low on Anekdot stock before we even launched. Take a look at it here.
Anekdot’s pieces are gorgeous as well as beautifully handmade and, as a result, of a superb quality. But by using only surplus fabric from larger brands that would have otherwise been discarded, Anekdot is also a real superstar of sustainability.
The label’s founder Sofie's solid background in fashion, with training in Florence and London, and her influences gathered across Europe combine beautifully in her work. She spoke to us from her studio in Berlin.
We’re such fans of Anekdot’s incredible line of lingerie. When did the idea for the label first come about?
The idea first came in about autumn 2014, on a flight back to London, after a few days visiting Berlin. I was filled with a tingling sense of freedom, inspired by brave, creative spirits who follow their passion and work with their artistry. It seemed so clear and my ideas, visions, beliefs combined with previous skills and experiences quickly came together as mind maps, drafts, sketches. I was filled with excitement and Anekdot started to take shape.
Did you always know you would build a brand with sustainability at its heart, or was it a by-product? Is it difficult to stay true to that principle?
When I relocated from Florence to London and became more aware of the issue of waste, my interest for the sustainability aspect increased and I became utterly committed to using pre-consumer surplus fabric. I never planned to fully run my own label, I thought there are already so many great designers out there and didn't feel the need to run ‘just another label making beautiful things’. It felt too selfish.
I question current business models, consumerism and want to work towards a renewed understanding of fashion and beauty. I believe in an industry that values people, the environment, creativity and profit in equal measure. Garments are not supposed to be mass produced like cold objects - I want to change the status of garments. That's why Anekdot was born!
It is challenging and time consuming, but I see new opportunities in every difficulty and constantly improving the process by remaining honest, transparent and aware of places to make change.
Anekdot is about anecdotes, and hints at a researched curiosity, unexpected surprise and personalised stories that connects to people, not consumers.
Is surplus fabric a big issue in general?
The textile industry is one of the largest areas that generates pre-consumer waste. It is estimated that we make 400 billion square metres of textiles annually, and 60 billion square metres is cutting room floor waste. New materials are discarded because they are too small for conventional production or don’t fit in the new collections. Anekdot is turning them into new goods, and offer an alternative to the current consumptive, stylistically sterile buying options.
What is your favourite fabric to work with?
My current favourite is the leftover fabric from Speedo. It has a fantastic supportive quality and the deep black doesn’t lose its intensity over time. I use it in so many different ways, from swimwear to elegant seamless underwear designs. I am forever thankful to [award-winning fashion designers] Orsola de Castro and Filippo Ricci for forwarding it to me.
You used to work for larger fashion houses. How has it been building your own business from scratch?
It is never easy to start a new company, and since I’m trying to challenge and innovate accepted business models, I'm not taking the easiest road. It is a constant, steep learning curve and I gain new experiences and skills every day, that go way beyond designing. I must do the things I think I cannot do. What really motivates me is the amazing comments and feedback from customers and followers, especially via Instagram and on the markets. In the end clothes aren’t going to change the world, but the women who wear them will.
With all that hard work, you must enjoy some well-earned downtime. What’s your favourite way to relax and have fun? Will you share your current favourite places in Berlin?
I'm not a big planner, what I find most relaxing is to be spontaneous, drop all musts and feel what I like to do at that exact moment. My favourite places depend on the season. In summer I spend all my free time outside in the nature, and Tempelhofer Feld, Maybachufer and Hasenheide are some of my favourite spots. I read something inspiring, go for a run, picnic with friends or just purely enjoy the sun. At this time of the year when it's getting cold I love to discover new places, candle lit bars, small music venues, dive into another culture and meet people with interesting backgrounds and ideas. I really enjoy learning, improving and experiencing something new. Agora Collective is one of my favourite places with great initiatives.
We're so pleased to be offering the Anekdot collection and can't wait to expand it soon. Click here to shop now!