Home Fashion Fashion designer Tuğba Atasoy’s denim and crystal fusion

Fashion designer Tuğba Atasoy’s denim and crystal fusion

Fashion designer Tuğba Atasoy’s denim and crystal fusion

About a year ago, I had the opportunity to interview fashion designer Tuğba Atasoy. Since founding her textile brand in 2011, she has been crafting both couture and ready-to-wear collections, while also offering design consultancy and styling services. Her designs, characterized by their feminine, cool, elegant and rebellious aesthetics, captivated me. Wearing her creations on special occasions felt like a stroke of luck, thanks to their remarkable patterns and her strong commitment to empowering women through apprenticeships, promoting sustainability in her brand, and utilizing superior fabrics.

Atasoy, born in 1986, is a graduate of the Fashion Textile and Design Department at Yeditepe University. Meticulous in her work and mastery, she even graduated at the top of her class. “I actually come from a family involved in shipping, a Black Sea family,” she explained.

“In our family tradition, children typically join the family business after completing their education. However, I didn’t choose this path. Toward the end of my high school years, I felt drawn to design. With my drawing skills and curiosity, I decided to pursue an education in fashion design,” she recounted during our initial meeting. This time, we convened to learn about the journey of her spring-summer collection and explore her new collection.

Atasoy ventured into using denim in her designs for the first time. Earthy tones like beiges and caramels dominate her latest collection. Reflecting on her experience with denim, Atasoy explains: “This is my first time working with denim. In the previous season, I experimented by incorporating denim into a dress for the first time. Working with denim in this collection posed challenges. It is a fabric that requires meticulous handling, and it took several attempts to perfect the pieces. Despite the difficulties, I have decided to make denim a staple in my future collections. Personally, I love wearing denim in my daily life. Its sustainability, particularly with more eco-friendly washing processes, is noteworthy. It is primarily cotton, making it durable and practical for long-term wear. Denim pieces, in my opinion, epitomize timeless elegance, aligning well with the classic aesthetic of my brand.”

As I inquire about the role of women’s employment and their contribution to the collection through handicrafts, she speaks passionately. “My mother’s involvement and the apprenticeships we shared crafting flower appliques are significant contributors to this collection,” she reveals. The support provided to women through employment is something she finds profoundly beautiful. With a smile brimming with pride evident in her voice, she emphasizes the craftsmanship evident throughout the entirely handmade pieces in the collection.

Tuğba Atasoy, who founded the textile brand in 2011, creates both couture and ready-to-wear collections. (Courtesy of Tuğba Atasoy)
Tuğba Atasoy, who founded the textile brand in 2011, creates both couture and ready-to-wear collections. (Courtesy of Tuğba Atasoy)

As we proceed through the collection, we encounter a captivating blend of femininity and masculinity. The juxtaposition of very feminine pieces with those bearing a more masculine aesthetic creates an unexpected harmony and beauty. Atasoy elaborates on this intriguing contrast, noting: “Even within masculine attire, there is an inherent grace and femininity that women exude. It inevitably shines through. Yet, with these masculine pieces, we aim to infuse a different and unexpected feminine balance.”

Explaining her exploration into men’s fashion, she shares how the collection served as a natural transition into her future plans. The inclusion of men’s jackets and shirts was not an abrupt decision but rather a response to the growing demand spurred by the satisfaction of men who started wearing her designs.

Reflecting on the evolving nature of fashion and its departure from traditional gender norms, Atasoy embraces a philosophy of clothing transcending gender boundaries. “We are in an era where clothes are no longer confined by gender,” she remarks. “It’s about finding shapes that complement our bodies and allow us to express ourselves comfortably.” While some pieces in the collection were developed from men’s patterns, they seamlessly transition into versatile designs suitable for both men and women, embodying the ethos of inclusivity and versatility in modern fashion.

Atasoy is deeply rooted in her Black Sea origins. You can always see a piece of these roots in every collection. So is there one in this collection too? “The Black Sea is actually in my soul. The deep dark blue of the Black Sea is in the collection. Suede jackets are the jackets my father wore in his youth. Handicrafts are already the works my family knows and loves very well. Naturally, there is a reflection of the culture I grew up in in the collection,” she says.

Sustainability is always at the forefront of Atasoy’s collections. The designer explains: “I still love wearing jackets inherited from my father, crafted by skilled tailors with high-quality fabric. Wearing my mother’s silk shirts brings me great joy. I believe I express myself best when adorned in pieces passed down from the women of my family who came before me. Dressing is a form of expression, and the uniqueness of our attire reflects our individuality.”

Continuing, she emphasizes how wearing family heirlooms often sparks inquiries due to their originality. “Whenever I wear an old family piece, more people inquire about its origin because its originality captures attention. This philosophy aligns with the sustainability movement gaining traction in the fashion industry. Quality garments endure through generations; each handmade piece holds intrinsic value, fostering stronger connections with the wearer and extending its lifespan,” she concluded.

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