Comradettes by Eldina Begic

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Comradettes by Eldina Begic

This is timely, given the UK public sector workers' strike today: London-based designer Eldina Begic has unveiled a collection of women's clothes inspired by socialist workwear.

Comradettes by Eldina Begic

Begic drew on her upbringing in former communist Yugoslavia to design the garments, which include denim overalls, dungarees and belted tunics.

Comradettes by Eldina Begic

Called Comradettes, the collection is on show at Londonewcastle Depot in north London until 26 June.

Comradettes by Eldina Begic

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Comradettes by Eldina Begic

The following information is from Londonewcastle Depot:


Comradettes is a clothing project inspired by socialist work culture. Created by artist and designer Eldina Begic, its aim is to shift the perception of manual workers and production in society. Comradettes encourages people to take pride in utility clothing, questioning our aspirations and value systems. Drawing on Constructivist ideas, Begic describes her clothing as “Productivist worksuits”.

Comradettes by Eldina Begic

Comradettes rejects the fashion industry’s appropriation of workwear, such as denim jeans, as a form of luxury.  Instead, workwear is presented as a means towards a sense of solidarity and community, challenging the endless expression of individuality through one’s clothes.

Comradettes by Eldina Begic

Comradettes celebrates the attitude of the uniform, and reprises the idea that clothing can reflect an ideology.

Comradettes by Eldina Begic

While traditionally workwear has been designed for men – with women’s workwear being simply a scaled-down version – Comradettes is specifically designed for women.

Comradettes by Eldina Begic

Comradettes launches on 22 June with an exhibition of the clothing in an ex-industrial hangar, the Londonewcastle Depot, in London. All the clothes are tailored, and will be available to purchase.

Comradettes by Eldina Begic

Eldina Begic was born in Sarajevo in 1976. Known as a conceptual artist in her homeland, she moved to London in 2000. She studied art at Saint Martins and design at the Royal College of Art, and has worked for a number of high profile clients in the design industry.

Comradettes by Eldina Begic

Comradettes began as a research project investigating worker’s clothing in Eastern Europe and South America, and draws heavily on her memories of growing up in Communist former Yugoslavia.

Comradettes by Eldina Begic

Londonewcastle Depot is an exhibition space created by property brand Londonewcastle in a former warehouse between Hoxton and Islington as a platform for creatives, artists, and local talent to display their work and further their practice. The space is donated to users who might not otherwise have the opportunity to show their work and forms part of the ongoing local cultural discourse.

Comradettes by Eldina Begic

Comradettes Exhibition 23–26 June 2011, 11.00–18.00
The Londonewcastle Depot 1–3 Wenlock Road
London N1 7SL

  • http://maxasylum.com Max

    This is what the proles would wear in 1984

  • http://twitter.com/jasonwd @jasonwd

    She has a full site up now at http://www.comradettes.com

  • James

    Can the clothes be worn all day or do they need a fifteen minute break every hour?

  • fernando esperanto

    Well, hard to know where to begin with this one…

    No doubt very expensive 'socalist style' clothes being promoted at a property development by londonewcastle – one of the most rapacious north london developers of recent years, who despite their much hyped 'design' ethos have yet to produce anything other than the usual humdrum barratt -style fodder. All leaves a rather bad taste in the mouth.

    She's got one thing right though: it certainly does question our values and aspirations – though I suspect not in the way she intends.

    • zee

      Interesting point, thanks for giving a bit of context.
      I think that indeed, regardless of the intention – which is slightly too 'formal' for my taste, it's very refreshing to finally see a fashion designer who creates with a political statement. It seems the designs could have been pushed a bit further (they remain a little on the 'historicizing' side), it's great to think again about gender, practicality, and workwear.