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Tea Silk in Rechenberg's collection

The Beijing-based label "Rechenberg" presented their latest collection just in time for spring! NEEMIC had the chance to attend the intimate fashion show in their beautiful courtyard studio.

Here's what Rechenberg had to say about their collection:

 „Our inspiration came from paper and everything that has to do with  it. We liked the way that raw paper shows a rough structure with veiny and crackled surfaces.   We attended a workshop where they do handmade paper and decided to transform the ideas onto our fabrics. This meant using all shades of white, crackled, transparent fabrics and developing our own prints on aquarelle paper or made with a Japanese marbling technique. The collection can de described as light, floating and airyLike in former collections simple but yet elegant cuts are dominating, same as the usage of silk, partly with beautiful screen prints, sometimes leather is used (especially typical for our clothes as trimming or piping). In this spring collection we have also one beautiful white piece made of Washi (japanes paper fabric) paper.“

Founder Kathrin von Rechenberg has been living and working in Beijing since 2000. It was her Chinese husband and her interest for Tea Silk which lead her to the capital. In this latest collection, she and her design protégée,  Sarah E. Weber, have further refined the application of this exclusive silk variant, using it for almost half of the collection.

Tea silk is all but forgotten in present-day China. The Chinese name is "香云纱 xiāng yún shā", literally "fragrant cloud organdy". Its tradition derives from Guangdong Province and dates from the Ming Dynasty (14th to 17th century AD). A complicated dyeing process makes the tea silk unique and precious. Kathrin von Rechenberg works with two small producers in the Pearl River Delta, where the tea silk processing is still carried out by hand in the traditional way. The silk fabric is dyed 30-40 times with organic plant ingredients and laid flat in the open air to dry between each dye. Covering it with river sand gives it its characteristic dark sheen. Just before finishing it is washed in tea. This natural and traditional fabric, which is completely ecologically processed reflects water, sand, sun and the rhythm of the seasons. Tea silk is a living, breathing fabric, it’s luster, like that of the pearl, increases with time. The uneven shading makes the fabric unique.

We were very inspired by the sustainable tea silk which Rechenberg used so stunningly in their latest collection. Accompanying music by flutist Bruce Gremo and guzheng (Chinese zither) player Yu Miao also tickled our senses.  

Rechenberg's unique designs can be tried on and purchased in their courtyard showroom or exclusive boutiques such as S.T.A.R.S in Beijing's Gulou Drum Tower area. 

Posted by Rojda on April 16th, 2014

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