Natallia Antanovich wanted to dress in a way that expressed her modern, feminine style, while also being a testament to her environmental awareness and desire to live sustainably on this planet. After struggling to source a wardrobe that was both high-quality and 100 percent natural (and gorgeous, of course!), she decided it was time to start her own clothing line. Econica was born.
“I remember always being well-dressed in tailored, comfortable clothes by my wonderful mom, who herself is an outstanding seamstress. She passed on her gift, and her standards of elegance and comfort, to me when I was a teenager back in Denmark,” Natallia recalls fondly. “Soon after making a few outfits for myself and my kids, I started getting lots of requests from friends and family to the point where I would be hard at work on these the entire weekend…I realized what a great idea opening an online shop would be.”
Natallia’s first experience with garment construction came well before the Econica seed was ever planted–she made her own prom dress. “…I worked tirelessly and meticulously to ensure that it had perfectly finished seams and a flawless fit. I was so proud of myself! Unfortunately, it was a hideous hue of vibrant lilac with sinfully large bows on the shoulders.”
Thankfully, she’s moved on from poufy shoulder bows and is now creating decidedly feminine women’s clothing that is both body-conscious and graceful. She’s a one-woman operation; designing, making patterns and sewing everything from scratch. Quality is still paramount and she shepherds each piece from start to finish.
She keeps a sketchbook with her at all times in case something should happen to inspire her. Those sketches eventually become fully realized patterns, at which point she makes a prototype that she personally test-drives. “It’s important to me that my designs make women look and feel beautiful, while being conscious of their clothes’ eco-friendly origins.”
Econica pieces are available in an incredible array of juicy colors (including this year’s trendy orchid) and rich, dark neutrals. Using eco-friendly fabrics in her work is Natallia’s biggest priority: sustainably-sourced organic hemp, cotton, bamboo and even super soft French terry. “It always boggled my mind how we could sacrifice our own health and the health of our planet for our wardrobe”, she says. “I knew I needed to find a compromise.”
Econica is sustainable by virtue of being classic–Natallia strives to provide women with comfortable clothing and lingerie they’ll wear for years; staples and wardrobe-builders that will never go out of style. The look is one of effortless elegance: the dress you throw on with strappy sandals for Sunday brunch, the cowl neck tunic that you wear with EVERYTHING because you can dress it up or down. “I adore ’60s style fashion with ultra feminine complex designs. I aim for a look that is classic, with clean lines and subtle feminine grace. I love to watch old Doris Day movies and always admire how impeccably she is dressed.”
“Being part of the creative process every step of the way is fascinating, but I do see Econica growing to something bigger. Not just a brand, but a concept, and ideal. I am finally launching my brand new Econica Boutique this month, which I hope will be the start to make my dream a reality.”
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All photos courtesy of Econica