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Everyone may be talking about the boisterousness of the Athenian art scene, but its fashion landscape is enjoying a similar regeneration. Rather than international creatives coming into the city, the Athenian fashion scene is harnessing the existing production and design talent to create local-first fashion. If you’re in Greece and want to be a part of the flourishing creative economy, these are the Athens-based fashion brands to buy.
A collective that offers a fashion-art hybrid, Serapis has amassed a loyal and international following for their beautiful photographs of tankers printed onto silk. Throughout, collections are inspired by idiosyncratic ship details and maritime traditions – a recent collection references the ancient and spiritual handwash held by ship owners every Easter; a symbolic cleansing of sins. Against the unruly, wild and boisterous life at sea, the designs are elegant and ephemeral, conjuring the spirit and feeling of a nautical life as well as reflecting its inherent aesthetics.
Founded in 2014 by George Soumpasis, Mary Giatra-Ritsou and Tasos Papageorgiou, MeThen started as a line of graphic t-shirts and sweatshirts and evolved into a full collection in 2016. Now with Stefanie Biggel as head designer and Stavros Bilionis as art director, the Athenian brand brings the strong architectural, cultural and natural influences of Greece to realisation in modern, refined design – often with a playful twist. MeThen is also dedicated to fostering local industry, and sources fabric from the local cotton factories around Athens.
Harnessing the power and atmosphere of surf culture and the sea, Mohxa sprung from the Athenian coastal town of Paleo Faliro in the early 2010s. Founded by Jason Pachos and George Papachatzopoulos, the brand has translated the seductive energy of the beach – and the myriad of cultural references that come with it – into shirts, t-shirts and accessories. Working with local manufactures from the start, the first Mohxa collection was built around vintage fabrics or ‘dead stock’ left over from the Greek textile industry. Having built a positive emblem of Greek style out of the economic strife, today Mohxa is a bastion for championing good vibes and better fashion.
Fusing traditional influences with a modern aesthetic, Noilence is an Athens-based jewellery brand by Ioanna Andritsou that renders design ideas in strong, geometric forms. Each piece of jewellery is an exercise in balance and harmony: necklaces are imagined with strong central focusses and delicate chains; memorable earrings play with texture and form; rings are sculptural and bracelets, though minimal, are designed to transform an outfit.
Opened in Plaka in 1971, Ioanna Kourbela’s family business started as a handmade knitwear brand. When in 2003 Ioanna Kourbela took the creative helm and produced her eponymous label, the heritage of Greek craftsmanship ensured she quickly developed a distinct aesthetic. Staying true to her roots, the brand today continues to produce avant-garde and covetable knitwear inspired by the captivating Greek light and geometry. A label committed to sustainability, all the designs are created from locally sourced fabrics, adding an extra layer of desirability to this celebrated brand.
A Greek streetwear brand with a fiery attitude, Sneak Aces mixes premium quality with everyday, low-key aesthetics to seductive effect. Founded by Nikos Paraskevakis, the label prides itself on raising the bar for streetwear standards in Greece and competing with the American titans – a commitment that’s reflected in the level and quality of the designs. While his love for the aesthetic was born out of snowboarding and extreme sports, today the label offers a full range of hoodies, sweats, tracksuits and accessories.
Conceived and created in Athens, It’s A Shirt is dedicated to making one thing well: the shirt. At the heart of this brand is a commitment to slow fashion, and while it offers a mix of colours and textures, they are all created with a timeless aesthetic to ensure they’re worn again and again. A unisex brand, It’s A Shirt is a perfect remedy to decadent fast-fashion brands that prioritise fleeting trends and speak to a limited customer base. If you’re looking for a smart, long-term Greek fashion investment this is a great place to start.
Founded by Stella Panagopoulou and Valisia Gotsi in 2017, 2WO+1NE=TWO is an Athens-based clothing brand built around ideas of rootlessness and travelling. The label draws inspiration from across the world, basing collections around different cities and the cultural life they contain, while maintaining a consistent aesthetic throughout. Designs work in sculptural forms, re-imagining staples such as the black dress or an oversized blazer in deconstructed and architectural formats to create a modern and distinct aesthetic that’s perfect for enlivening and distorting the everyday.