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Ottolinger AW17 credit- Photography Lillie Eiger
Photography Lillie Eiger

The irreverent duo taking a well-placed hatchet to uninspired design

AgesChrista 35, Cosima 35
LocationBerlin, Germany

Search and destroy could easily have been the motto for Berlin-based design duo Ottolinger, aka Christa Bösch and Cosima Gadient. The two have taken lighters, packing tape and acid to their deconstructed garments, conjuring something completely new from what was there before. Where do their destructive tendencies come from? “Probably the innocence of being a kid and a teenager, just doing things without questioning them too much,” says Gadient. “We try to always keep some of that. Go by your instincts and ideas and feel comfortable with it. Don’t let your critical mind interrupt the outpouring.”

They’ve shown in both New York and Paris, but as the de facto mecca for creative youth, Berlin feels like a suitable home for Ottolinger. “Berlin is a very good place for us right now, it gives us a lot of freedom to create and focus on our work,” says Gadient. “It’s one of those places where we feel like we can do whatever we want.” Whatever they want has so far translated into skewering the idea of creating commercially minded clothing. Instead, their focus on one-off DIY pieces has brought them a growing cult fanbase eager to see what Ottolinger will take a hatchet to next.

Trey Taylor