One of indieBerlin’s favourite fashion designers is Jade Helene – who with her two labels, Jade Helene and Level Eight, has been turning heads in Berlin for the last few years.
She’s just moved out of her shop on Max-Beer-Strasse in Mitte and shifting to Tor Strasse – the new shop opens in February – and meanwhile she’s working out of her studio in Neukölln. So we thought, what better time to ask her a few questions, and the same time tell you where you can find the lady and her creations these days.
indieBerlin: Tell us about yourself.
Jade Helene: I am from Cape Town in South africa, lived in a few places around the world but currently residing in Berlin. 29 years old.
I could play dress up for hours, and put myself in any character
indieBerlin: What triggered your passion for passion?
Jade Helene:I had a very creative father, he was totally cool and a great artist, thats for sure where I get my drawing abilities from. My mother also was working in the fashion industry around my age and travelled Europe, it sometimes seems like I’m reliving parts of her twenties. I always envisioned outfits in my head before it was put to paper, and I could play dress up for hours, and put myself in any character.
…its about darkness evolving into nostalgia, sometimes romance, love or sex. Its a weird one, but its a mix of feelings I have had over the past months
indieBerlin: What are your sources for inspiration generally, and/or for your new collection specifically.
Jade Helene: Honestly it could be anything, in any moment. I mix and play with my own personal feelings, style and emotions. The new collection is called Shadow Rose, and its about darkness evolving into nostalgia, sometimes romance, love or sex. its a weird one, but its a mix of feelings I have had over the past months. Inspiration is in us and all around us, isnt it?
indieBerlin: How would you describe your unique style?
Jade Helene: Its constantly changing, depending on my mood, depending on the dress. it really could be anything there is no right and no wrong, whatever makes you feel great just rock it and dont apologise. otherwise you can’t use the word unique right?
Lost memories and untold stories
indieBerlin: How would you describe your new collection?
Jade Helene: A mixture of a lot of thoughts. Lost memories and untold stories.
indieBerlin: Which would you say is the best piece in your current collection?
Jade Helene: The black and white striped aurora suit
Aurora is the name of the goddess of sunrise whose tears turned into morning dew, and in disney I guess it would be sleeping beauty 🙂
All connecting with my emotions and thoughts for Shadow rose.
indieBerlin: Do you work nationally or Internationally? And if internationally what difficulties do you find exist for doing that?
Jade Helene: Internationally, I produce in both Berlin and South Africa and collect fabrics from all around the world, as well as my inspiration.
Never rule out a dream that seems unreachable, I can swear by this
indieBerlin: How do you find the experience of working as a fashion designer in Berlin- in terms of it being a centre of creativity, in terms of the emerging artists and fashion designers?
Jade Helene: It’s like no other city, as a creative person you can really play with all the attributes berlin has to offer, you can get pretty lost in translation, but in a powerful playground kind of way. Although there is A LOT of freelance designers, photographers and stylists – it never feels like you are competing. Everyone is pretty open to collaborate, no matter what your status.
indieBerlin: What advice would you give fashion lovers?
Jade Helene: Just be yourself and believe in yourself, I know its a typical cliche saying but it’s the truth. Never rule out a dream that seems unreachable, I can swear by this. Magic happens in unexpected places and also in people.
indieberlin: What projects do you have planned for the future
Jade Helene: To continue creating, doing more shows, more events and keeping my shop Level Eight Berlin alive.
indieBerlin: How can people find you-online and in the real world?
Jade Helene: My shop: Level Eight berlin……………
facebook: Jade Helene Designs
Instagram: Jade Helene Designs and Level Eight Berlin
indieBerlin: What trends do you currently see in the fashion industry?
Jade Helene: I don’t really follow trends, but if i had to pinpoint it to something I would say I am seeing more and more people celebrating there individuality and coming into there own style without help.
indieBerlin: How do you stay up to date?
Jade Helene: I have no idea because I am totally swamped with a million things 24/7, im a constant worker and creator, finding time to sleep is hard enough. Adrenaline and stress is a powerful game.
Noel Maurice is one of the founders of indieberlin. Originally from the UK via a childhood in Johannesburg, he has been resident in Berlin since 1991. Describing himself as a ‘recovering musician’, he is the author of The Berlin Diaires, a trilogy detailing the East Berlin art and squat scene of the early 90s, available on Amazon and through this site.