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Artist of the Week — Corinna Ketterling

May 10, 2010 by · 3 comments

Natalia Nikolaeva’s interview with the designer Corinna Ketterling
Translation by Nevena Borisova


Are you open to change?

Change always give you motivation to respond and develop. According to Darwin, this reaction helps species to survive. This response to change leads the individual to a rising sense of satisfaction.

I actually love the stream of change and I want to swim in it, so I see change as something positive. Most of all, I think that changes in society are a source of ideas and inspiration.


Do you have a motto in life? What would be your fashion motto?

My motto in life could be: “Try to accept things as they are. In addition to this, it can be said that you must not get angry about things that other people do, but try enjoy what they do.

Your position in life is often very decisive and inappropriate positions lead to unrealistic expectations. This can be very frustrating for some people. Above all, this is a pure waste of energy.

My fashion motto could be: “Be who you are, bring what you want!”


What does creation of fashion accessories give you?

I believe that everyone has specific goals or even a destiny. Sometimes it is difficult to discover what they are; many people fail to discover them throughout their lives. I don’t exactly know why, but I know that what I do is my destiny.


What fashion type are you? What would be your perfect customer?

I love Armani. Otherwise I am an individualist with the motto “do it yourself”, and I am always ready for experiments. I love the markets for second hand goods, I make combinations myself, put together clothes from there and refashion them.

I can be a big perfectionist; however. If I must be honest, I’m pretty tacky. :-S
However, the reason for this is reflected both by the fact that I don’t look at myself too seriously, and that I live in Berlin.

My perfect customer is a woman with confidence, who loves quality and exceptional products and who purposefully differs from the majority of other people.


What have been or what is your most fashion-crazy idea?

I can’t say that here because it has not yet been patented, but I can assure you that this will be revolutionary in terms of bags …. remember the name “C6”.

But anyway… a recent modern man’s bag with shape of a holster is also a very interesting idea.


When do you feel really free?

For me freedom is associated with nature, especially with the sea. But I am also confident in people’s own freedom which can be achieved at any moment if you have enough courage and do not let yourself to be limited by imaginary boundaries.


What kind of art do you like the most?

I am very open. Broadly speaking, I am more interested in the forms of Jugendstil example, rather than contemporary art.

Flick’s collection annoyed me, and I was stunned by the exhibition of Lalique jewelry. I love change, and as it regards my bags, they are influenced by Russian Constructivism. There are many types of arts, which are great and deserve to be seen, but for me nature remains the greatest creator of art, which enchants me the most and grants more and more surprises.


Does any logo guide you to create new things?

My motto is “A rapier between quality and price and between design and practicality.” Most often this is a compromise, on the other hand I’m a big supporter of perfect solutions rather than compromises. In short, I could say that I am seeking perfection.


Which color combination do you prefer when you create a bathroom? Why?

The colors of the “C6” – Black, white and red – that is also the primary colors in Russian Construktivism in red. However, red is the only true color of the three. Black is the absence of color, white is the aggregate effect of all colors and these colors can always be combined very well with everything – that is essential.

Red is a color like no other which combines both strong and opposite feelings, such as love and aggression. It has incredible strength and signals impact – this is also a color which traditionally reflects positively on family.


Who is your muse at the moment? How do you remain open to new ideas?

My muses are VITA [1] and Welt [2]. I observe how people are dressed – of course, mostly when I’m traveling. Although people in Berlin (with their ruthless individualism) sometimes give me many new ideas. Italians have a great flair for fashion and at the same time are innovators – Kreuzberg [3] or Mitte [4] can be very useful for design and other ideas. Berliners are able to invent things from their grandmothers` dresses that seem incredible to other people.


What is the one fashion collection you will never forget?

With the exception of some designer collections, which were very important to me, certainly I will never forget my first “C6” collection effort and all the effort it was related with, but also I haven’t forgotten the experienced adventure and pleasure.


What is your vision for women’s fashion? And men’s?

My modern man is free from convention when he wants to be. With a bold sense of ease, as women have conquered all male fashion elements, so must the modern man act…But without skirts…at least unless his legs are shaved.


My type of modern woman takes advantage of fashion without being its slave. According to my understanding Madonna is much more modern than Victoria Beckham. Fashion to me means freedom and self-assertion, and freedom might even mean sneakers and a sport suit.


How did you think of the name of your fashion brand?

It’s interesting that you ask. At the moment I live in Florence, and what happened is one muggy summer day, I was on the road in my car. Passing through the slow-moving traffic on the crossroad to the “Ponte Delle Vittoria,” I read the license plate of the car in front of me: “C6” … …. And I thought: “Ci Sei “……. This is an interesting play upon words …

Because “Ci Sei” means in Italian: “You get there, but it can also mean” Did you catch the meaning? ”


When did you found the brand “C6”? And how would you describe your way of working?

C6” was first established back in 2002 in Italy as a fashion brand. In 2006 the brand was relaunched in Berlin with its present price and commodity.. The first idea was to be competitive in Italy because of the market situation. Before that, I have never dealt with the theories of economics..


My way of working is based on demand analysis and market surveys. Ideas mostly affect the details or advanced options. Shape, and also shapelessness too. I come up with ideas for my bags out of cardboard and pass them on to production in Italian factories. Examination of materials is also very important, especially in the case of quick and individual orders.


Is the art of creation deeply rooted in the art of life?

Yes, in all cases. Fashion directly reflects the spirit of time and life. That’s why fashion doesn’t belong to free art – fashion should serve.


What is your favorite accessory from your current collection?

My favorite accessory is a Red Mandala. This is the best bag I have ever had. It had been a long time before I created it and I love it with all my heart. Although the black version suits everything and the white one has the most refined look …… I like the red one best out of all of them.


Would you complete the following sentences, please?:

The most important tool for a designer …. is their head.
My rituals at work ……….. are, among others, to ask my cat to come down from the drawing table.
The biggest enemy of ideology …….. is rigidity and control.
Designers and artists ……… have different tasks.


What do you dream about?

Of a skyscraper of “C6” at the central station in Berlin, overlooking the Spree and kindergarten on the ground floor and with a sauna and swimming pool on the roof. Of people being happy with “C6” and who enjoy working in it as an international company. Of parents who eat on the ground floor together with their children during a lunch break and of undertakings that will require a management team so employees can freely express their opinions and are treated with respect so that they have no cause for complaints.


Where might someone find your work?

We are re-structuring the company’s plan again, and parting ways with several partners.

We still have our internet store (which is without postage and has a two-year warranty) and soon we will be presented with our own storefront on Potsdamer Platz in the Marriot hotel’s gift shop.

In the future we will stick to a plan for direct sales and and within expensive hotels.


Born in Berlin, the designer Corinna Ketterling launches her own brand C6?! in Italy, 2002. Since 2006 the label has been renewed in its current aspect.

Formerly, Corinna acquired international experience and professional practice in famous fashion houses and has even been taught by the French designer Christian Lacroix.

In the products and accessories of C6?! you can find a wide variety of different national influences.

1 It comes from the German word „Vitalität“ – vitality, liveliness
2 it comes from the German word „Welt“ – world (universe)
3 Kreuzberg – a district in Berlin
4 Mitte – the central part of Berlin

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