Take 5 with... Vichy from NYRA Design!
This week we are proud to introduce NYRA Design and the female power-house behind the brand: Vichy! Read about her brand, her mission, the eco- and social responsibilities of a designer, and… her love for Berlin!
Please introduce yourself, where are you from, what’s your background and why did you choose Berlin as a base for yourself and your business?
My name is Vichy, 27 born and raised in Aachen, but both my parents are from Cambodia. After graduation I studied Fashion & Textile design in Maastricht but quickly moved to Berlin and finished both my bachelor and master degree in fashion design there. I felt Berlin has more to offer for creatives than any other German city. I moved there in 2013 because I wanted to connect with likeminded creatives, get inspired by the diversity and variety of the city and its cultural offer. Berlin is a creative hub for many disciplines – that’s why it’s so interesting and never boring to live in Berlin.
What's important to you, and how do these values affect your professional choices?
When I decided to study fashion design I didn’t know much about sustainability or up-cycling. But from study year to study year I felt like the fashion industry is was constantly taking the wrong turn, and a lot of these values in fashion didn’t match with my own. That’s why I was in constant conflict with myself, asking if I was working in the right industry. I value good and thoughtful designs and love to challenge myself with different sustainable design techniques such as zero waste pattern cutting or up-cycling. As a designer it’s your responsibility not to waste any more resources than needed. And one should always asks themselves when creating products, what's the benefit, or the value of my created product and how can I design even better products?
Tell us about Nyra Design - what’s your mission and vision?
The idea about Nyra Design started with my mum. It also explains the brand name Nyra, because it is the name of my mother. She was the one who taught me in my early years how to sew, create and make. And I think it is because of her, that I have this affinity and passion for textiles and tactile experiences.
Now living in a digital and artificial world, people are less interested in old craftsmanship techniques and creating products by hand, because of its inefficiency. We recognise a small crafts movement and DIY trend in society, but still the knowledge of craftsmanship is fading away. So at Nyra Design made it our mission to merge old design techniques with new technology, preserving craftsmanship and translating textile knowledge and tactile experiences for future generations. Our mission is to share creative crafts stories and give back and support other creative communities.
How would you describe the general eco-awareness in Germany and what do you personally do on daily basis to live more consciously?
I would say that the eco-awareness in Germany is growing. I think everyone has heard about this thing called sustainability by now, but there isn’t yet much effort to really change things. Also for me I think it’s difficult and challenging and I sometimes catch myself buying a cup of coffee and forgot my reusable cup at home. On the other side I start creating reusable products myself, such as the cotton pads, which reduce an immense amount of waste everyday. Hopefully, I can inspire others with my products to live a more sustainable life and to support local makers and creators.
Who are your personal heroes and why?
My parents are my personal heroes, because they never gave up and always fought and worked for the things we have and own today. I really admire their bravery and thanks to their hard work and effort I am in this position today to inspire, motivate and help others.