Photo by Ilias Tsepas
Structure and texture are central in Romina's work and she is known for her innovative pattern cutting techniques and a Bauhaus aesthetic, inspired by her love of architecture, nature, costume and the human anatomy. Her garments are highly seductive with an inspired mix of sensual fabrics and strict lines, redefining geometry and shape. The silhouettes are partly fluid, partly structured with fine detail that aspire to a timeless quality. At a first glance her work may seem futuristic but if you look at it carefully there are always echoes from the past. The designer also creates her own original prints and has a zero waste approach when it comes to design using her surplus fabrics to create mosaic style textile art and one-off garments. She describes her design philosophy as technical discipline combined with creative freedom.
Romina was born in Athens, Greece in the summer of 1977. Her love for everything art was evident from an early age. Once she turned 18 she moved to London in order to study Art & Design which was then followed by Fashion. She is a Central Saint Martins Alumni and worked at leading British designers and brands before launching her namesake line in 2005 at London Fashion Week. Besides London her collections were presented at fashion weeks: PRET-A-PORTER Paris, WHITE Milan, AFW Russia and AFW Athens. Romina Karamanea has been featured in numerous international publications including British Vogue, Marie Claire, L'Officiel, Madame Figaro, Elle, The Metro, LA Times, Vision, Ozon, Surface, Grazia, Dazed and WWD while her collections were carried at progressive boutiques such as B store, Marchine - A, 127 Brick Lane (London) Gallerie De Vie (Hong Kong), Studio Avra (Athens). In 2010 Italian designer Donatella Versace and the Sunday Times Style Magazine fashion writer Colin McDowell short-listed Romina for the prestigious Fashion Fringe Award whilst in the same year she was also short-listed for the British Innovation Award for being one of the few designers in London using sustainable methods in her production processes. Romina's work was featured in the100 New Fashion Designers book written by Hywel Davies, Programme Director for Fashion at Central Saint Martins. This led to a creative collaboration with on-line platform ShowStudio a brainchild of the internationally acclaimed fashion photographer Nick Knight. Late fashion journalist Hilary Alexander has mentioned Romina Karamanea in Daily Telegraph as one of the most talented young designers in London, while fashion editor Late Isabella Blow gave praise, mentored Romina and wore her designs. Romina's designs have also been spotted on Sister Bliss (Faithless), Viktoria Modesta, Kelis, Susanna Lau (Susie Bubble), Shingai Shoniwa (Noisettes), Jodie Harsh, Amelle Berrabah (Sugababes), Alexandra Burke, Jessica Hart, Kay Tse and many more. During her London years the designer has taught at the Architectural Association School (AA), the Morley College and Central Saint Martins while also receiving a Lifelong Learning Certification for teaching from City & Guilds. After 20 years of living and working in London Romina Karamanea decided to relocate to her hometown Athens and in 2016 formed RK Fashion School an educational institution focused on fashion related disciplines such as design, construction, business and styling.