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Lithuanian design identity: traditions made contemporary


Recently, Lithuanian design has gained momentum and new interest not only in Lithuania but also in Europe and the rest of the world. Previously little-known clothing, accessory, jewellery and product designers from a small Eastern European country are now broadening their scope of work from the Baltic Sea to the edges of the Pacific Ocean.

Most importantly, in Lithuania the majority of information is not only about well-known designers from other countries but there’s a growing interest in the local designers. The new Art-Cart collection presents Lithuanian designers working in the field of fashion, including new and inventive teams at LOOM fashion design open studio and TADAM! Design. The collection focuses on the distinctiveness of Lithuanian design features and contemporary trends.

LOOM fashion design open studio duo – Vidmina Stasiulytė and Julija Frodina, create fashion products where tradition and modernity, simplicity and details interweave. The young designers’ collection is characterized by simplicity, naturalness, quiet elegance and sensuality. Interaction between tradition and modernity also exists in products made by PRIM PRIM design studio, where contemporary design trends are combined with archaic forms and content. Their design project “Remember the handkerchief” (“Prisimink nosinę”) has a double meaning – it is a fabric accessory and a special symbol in the Lithuanian language.

Nostalgic Lithuanian sweets and contemporary design merges in TADAM! Design’s conceptual jewellery kitchen. Here, traditional Lithuanian sweets, barankos, take on a new meaning – they become original and eye-catching jewellery pieces. Material nostalgia is also felt in the works by a unique handbag maker Aušra Sedlevičiūtė. The designer creates rich texture patterns from simple, smooth fabrics, mainly using black colour fabrics that are so close and familiar to everyone.

Lithuanian design identity is beginning to slowly emerge in the young creators’ work. In contrast to previous generation designers, who were torn between German, Italian and Scandinavian design trends, contemporary Lithuanian designers can be praised for their unique design feature. This unique design feature is Lithuanian identity and traditions in relation to history and culture (Lithuanian alphabet, barankos, natural fabrics). If we had to summarize Lithuanian design in three words then we would choose: emotion, warmth and irony.

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