Anna Stervinou spent her childhood surrounded by flowers in a small Breton nursery before studying at the Ecole Estienne, while Kike Gutierrez was studying communications in the Basque country. Anna then crossed the Channel and started at the Camberwell College of Art in London, where she learnt to deconstruct almost everything she had been taught in Paris. By this time, Kike had also arrived in London, where his first job was playing criminals in line-ups for Scotland Yard.
Kike and Anna finally met in Saigon, where he was creative director at Saatchi and Saatchi. They developed and created the ‘Nanou’ project, a first collection of Vietnamese clothing. They then moved to West Africa where a Ghanaian collection was born. It was finally in Brazil that Kore Kamino was born, with the original idea of designing clothing and accessory collections depending on, and inspired by, the country in which they were living.
Participating countries: Vietnam, Brazil, Ghana, Nepal and France (Brittany)
Three questions for Anna Servinon, founder of Kore Kamino
Three words to define your brand:
Travel+ stories= Fashion
How is your approach truly fair trade?
Well, in the same way that we are passionate about the human stories and the people behind these stories, we are committed to providing fair working conditions for the workers who manufacture our collections.
Three quarters of our products are made by a social enterprise of the Anti-Traffic Alliance program, which is a partner of Afesip in Vietnam. The twenty or so employees that work there- former victims of sexual trafficking or women in difficulty- are trained and paid by the program.
Our partners in the craft and social projects include Mekong Quilts, an income-generating program of the Vietnamese NGO Mekong Plus, the weaving community of Ban Na Choe village, Sakon Nakhon in the north-east of Thailand and the independent family embroiderers of Kathmandu in Nepal.
When it isn’t possible for any of the above communities to produce our pieces, we use small family businesses of tailors and silk screen printers. We oversee their working conditions through good personal relations, being close by and frequent on-site visits; we systematically refuse to work with those who do not offer transparency.
In combining social construction, craft collaboration and family businesses, Kore Kamino offers a responsible and positive approach to fashion.
The latest achievement of which you are proud?
Our Nepalese collection, ‘La Fille en Rouge’ (the Girl in Red), whose inspiration comes from a wonderful discovery made in Kathmandu, when we fell upon a book about a father and a goddess…
Scott Berry, an American writer and father to Maya and Anna, saw the birth and growing friendship between his two girls and a young Nepalese living goddess in Kathmandu in the 1980’s.
Intrigued by this unlikely friendship, due to the prevailing religious and social codes of Nepal at the time, we went in search of the protagonists of this story.
We found them 20 years later; the grizzled writer, the goddess become mortal and the two young international women. They agreed to share their story, and so was born ‘La Fille en Rouge’, a magical and mystical collection, a hymn to meeting others and to tolerance.