These Berlin Designers Are Making Dick Bikinis To Hold Your Boobs
Is it just us, or has every cool internet girl been rocking a sparkly, dick-shaped bikini top these day? YesJulz was spotted donning one recently, and Princess Nokia also went dicks out on the tatas not too long ago.
The designers behind the “dickinis” are two Berlin cool kids. Their brand Namilia has a penchant for turning the faces of your fave celebs — or not so fave president — into fashion.
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We talked to Nan and Emilia about how sexual imagery has made their brand a fave with celebs and Instagram girls, what makes an American tourist stand out in Berlin, and if they think Trump will attack them for making a patch that shows him getting a golden shower.
Lots of your items feature Trump. You guys are based in Berlin, is this designed with the American consumer in mind?
The collection we did on Trump was last year right before the elections. Even though we were working from Berlin, I think you could feel the tension around the world. Trump becoming the president wasn’t just something that affected the US, but rather showed a global political direction that was worrying us.
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Where are you both from?
I am originally from Munich and Emilia is from Dusseldorf. We met in Berlin during our BA studies at the University of the Arts Berlin.
People have hypothesized that fashion will get crazier under Trump, do you guys see this happening?
The Trump administration stands for much more conservative and nationalist ideas in society which we believe lots of other young people cannot identify with. Women’s rights, gay rights and a general open-mindedness towards other cultures, ideas and beliefs which have been fought for in the last decades are being questioned and threatened again. That’s why we think there will be a lot more designers and artists wanting to express themselves more boldly and louder to fight for the things they believe in.
How is fashion different in Berlin than in New York?
Berlin is becoming more and more international, but you can still feel a very German background.
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I think the biggest difference is that fashion is being celebrated a lot more in New York. It is more accepted that people use clothing to express themselves to be daring and bold with your choice of fashion. In Berlin clothing is a lot more minimal, dark, serious and functional. It is not very common to spend a lot on your wardrobe and fashion, especially if it is going into a more expressive, colorful and girly direction — it’s often seen as superficial. Everyone is trying to come across as cool and nonchalant as possible. This is also one of the main themes we are exploring in our next collection.
What’s a stereotypical “American” fashion item that makes us look like total tourists?
Trucker caps, wife-beaters, and a really bad sunburn.
So your first collection was called “My pussy, my choice” and your current collection involves a dick-shaped bikini, why do you use so much sexual imagery in your designs?
Our dickini has really become one of our signature pieces that we bring back in every collection in a new way. We want to challenge the idea that sexual imagery is something cheap or taboo. If you take a look back at 90s or early 00s fashion, sex and erotica in fashion was a lot more accepted and celebrated. Our brand NAMILIA really celebrates sexual freedom and we see it as a new way of empowerment to use your own sexuality as a weapon in a very aggressive and intimidating way.
Do you think it helps people find your brand, including such novelty items?
With each collection we really try to come up with new pieces of clothing that haven’t existed before. I think in our post-modern world it is all about remixing and referencing existing trends, but we do try to be more inventive and hardcore when we mash up different garments to create new pieces.
So you have a new piece with Paris Hilton’s photo on it, you’ve also done pieces with Zayn and Obama’s photos. How does that work? Do you have to get consent before using their image on your pieces?
When we use images of iconic celebrities, we always turn them into artwork or collages, a very pop art approach like Andy Warhol. Right now we’re still so small we haven’t gotten in trouble for it, but let’s see what we will do in the future…
What about when you’re defiling someone’s image, like the patches where you’ve photoshopped Trump’s head onto someone getting showered with pee?
I think there are enough other artists and designers out there which are also using Trump’s image to create provocative pieces. Of course, we went really hardcore, but until now the feedback has been very positive.
How do you think Instagram has changed fashion?
The whole world has connected a lot more. I don’t think we would be as successful as we are without Instagram. It allows you to work on a global level and to reach your audience everywhere. Our studio is in Berlin, but most of our fans are in the US, Australia, and Asia.
Do you think people are more likely to buy something like the dickini because it’ll make for cool Instagram photos?
I would say that our pieces are definitely statement pieces that you would only wear if you want to be the center of attention. There are already enough brands out there who cover a day-to-day style.