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“Creative Narva” – Renaissance of Fashion in Narva”

In 2018, Narva city witnessed an unprecedented revival, breathing new life into its rich cultural tapestry through the “Creative Narva: United Workshops of Fashion.” This pioneering initiative, aimed at budding fashion designers, stylists, sewing specialists, photographers, and videographers, offered a unique platform to forge their own internationally competitive fashion brands. Under the guidance of global fashion luminaries like Christian Stenberg, Ülle Pohjanheimo, Peeter Alujan, and Alice Lefons, participants were given the tools to craft brands that not only resonated on a global stage but also reflected their individual creative visions.

The essence of “Creative Narva” was to unite talent and creativity, fostering a collaborative environment where ideas could flourish. The series culminated in a competition, with the winning team earning a study trip to Milan – the beating heart of European fashion. This not only provided exposure but also invaluable insights into the global fashion industry.

The project transcended the creation of fashion; it was about rekindling Narva’s historical textile legacy through contemporary expression. Organized by figures like Karl Kristian Steinberg, Anu Lõhmus, and Jana Pavlenkova, and led by Darja Saar, “Creative Narva” sought to cement the city’s place as a burgeoning fashion hub.

The climax of the initiative was a fashion show on Sunday, January 13, at the Free Stage in Narva, showcasing the finalist collections of the Creative Narva competition. The event was a testament to Narva’s renewed status as Estonia’s textile and fashion capital, drawing massive interest. The competition saw over 100 participants, with 69 finalists across 17 teams presenting a diverse range of collections from swimsuits to festive wear. The Tartu brand KUUL design clinched the top spot, embarking on a study trip to Milan, followed by LIKE LOOK and Formés, highlighting the immense talent pool within Narva.

The jury, including esteemed designer Ülle Pohjanheimo, faced a tough decision, underscoring the high caliber of all entries. The event also celebrated special prize winners, such as LIKE LOOK receiving a nod from the Tallinn Creative Incubator and B´MOR Design winning the Creative Narva popular vote on Facebook.

This monumental project was made possible with the support of sponsors and partners like the EAS European Regional Development Fund, Tallinn Creative Incubator, Tallinn Design House, Ida-Virumaa Vocational Education Center, Narva Gate, and the Swedish Embassy, among others. Their contributions were pivotal in bringing this vision to life, showcasing Narva’s potential as a fashion industry beacon.

“Creative Narva 2018” was more than a competition; it was a movement that bridged Narva’s rich textile heritage with the modern fashion landscape. As the city continues to evolve, the legacy of “Creative Narva” will undoubtedly inspire future generations of designers, reinforcing Narva’s position on the map of creative industries.

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