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Schmidttakahashi is a Berlin based label that specializes in upcycled and restyled, redesigned clothing. As the name suggest, there is a decided Asian aesthetic to the collection of women’s wear.  Reanimation / Wiederbelebungsmassnahmen, is the name of their project, to value, track and communicate the history and heritage of each item that goes into their recycled design collection.  With a belief that garments carry with them a heritage, a history, and multiple stories absorbed through the wearing, schmidttakashi undertake a laborious process of collecting discarded and used clothing in their custom made containers. Each collected item is carefully washed and ironed, then assigned an identification number, identifying the former owner, without breaching their privacy of course, the color, material and style is catalogued, and archival photographs taken.  All the information from the archiving and photographing of each donated item is then saved in a small RFID transponder, basically a simple digital number chip, which can be read with an RFID reader; simple technology available on most smart phones as an application download.  RFID tags are quite robust, and can easily withstand washing, so each uniquely numbered item has the relevant RFID tag sewn into it, which can be access at anytime to learn its history, as well as to track its new life.

Working with each unique clothing donation schmidttakahashi strips each item down, only to reassemble it in a different configuration, to create new clothes.  Their approach in individualistic, immediate and intuitive, often resulting in combinations such as a trench coat with a down jacket, completely retranslating outerwear in the process.  Designs are rarely predetermined; each style is a process of evolution and a hybrid aesthetic, often forming the most unexpected combinations.  The brand revels in their unconventional cuts, proportions, fabric and garment combinations, sometimes resulting in such unexpected partnering, as a classical men’s checkered jacket, with a woman’s fur coat, or a silk shirt transformed into a summer dress and belted with a heavy knit belt taken from a sweater.  Despite the diversity of the mixed materials and styles, schmidttakahashi pay particular attention to the final harmony of the design, and line each one with pure silk.

The label comprises of Eugenie Schmidt, born in Tajikistan and educated in Berlin, as well as the renowned Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp, Belgium, and Mariko Takahashi, born and educated in Tokyo and Berlin.  This unique partnership combines to crate a wonderfully eclectic and avant-garde aesthetic through their designs, incorporating complex layered combinations for a harmonious whole.

Website: www.schmidttakahashi.de