‘Frolov’ is a ‘couture-to-wear’ fashion brand at the heart of Kyiv, where it was founded back in 2015 by designer Ivan Frolov. Through the collections, the design team explores and communicates messages the brand feels important to raise including transsexuals’ culture, BDSM ethics, aesthetics, fetishism and the LGBTQ+ movement.
Born in Kyiv in 1993, Ivan Frolov aspired to be a fashion designer for as long as he can remember. As a kid, he used to draw sketches and and created his first dress when he was just fourteen. In fact, one of his first fashion memories is a runway show of John Galliano he saw on television and that was the moment he knew he had found his passion and career path. After graduating from high school he studied fashion at Kyiv National University of Technology and Design while simultaneously working as a stylist to earn money for the production of new collections.
In 2015 , he launched “couture-to-wear” brand, Frolov, with the help of his friends. The design aesthetic involves corsetry, luxurious fabrics and intricate embellishments although he customises the looks per the individual measurements of each client. And, he often uses elastic mesh which helps to create a perfect fit for any body type. “Sometimes people pronounce Frolov as for love – and there is no mistake. Cause the first thing we create as a brand is a love, and everything we do is with love. That’s why the anatomical heart is our logo, and we put it out on each of our pieces,” explains Ivan on the fashion brand’s official website. The brand ethos is visible in the collections which communicates messages the brand feels important to raise, including transsexuals’ culture, BDSM ethics and aesthetics, fetishism, and the LGBTQ+ movement. As the designer says, “Frolov is for people who love to express themselves in their own unique way, who love to experiment, who empower their sexuality and treat their looks not just as a piece of clothes, but as a powerful statement.”
While growing his fashion brand, Ivan continued his studies and got a PhD in Arts while also lecturing Theory Of Fashion Industry at a Kyiv University. There was no looking back. After winning “Look into the future” in 2014, Frolov began showcasing at Ukrainian Fashion Week and quickly got an A-list following that includes Beyoncé, Dua Lipa, Doja Cat, Gwen Stefani, Coco Rocha, Rita Ora and many others. The brand was in the news for the “Firework” minidress designed for Beyoncé which was written about in International media. The crystal-and-gold hand embroidered pink minidress with coordinated leggings, which she wore on stage at Dubai.
Buoyed by success, the Ukranian fashion brand expanded its offerings to include women’s couture-to-wear, a unisex line and a bridal line. However, the past year has been tumultuous due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. “We’re experts in constructing corsets and bras and evening gowns. Instead, when our production lines started again, we were making uniforms, bulletproof vests and rocket and grenade holders. I had many offers to help me move abroad. But, in the end, I knew I had to remain in Kyiv. For me, personally, to be a Ukrainian fashion brand meant I had to stay in Ukraine….” Ivan Frolov told The New York Times. Regardless, the war continues to shape the lives of Ukrainian designers, who have come out stronger. Frolov recently showcased at Paris Fashion Week through the support of USAID Competitive Economy Program in Ukraine and before that, at London Fashion Week with the support of The British Fashion Council.
To customise each look as per the buyers’ individual measurement.
Through the collections, the design team spotlights topics they feel is important including transsexuals’ culture, BDSM ethics, aesthetics, fetishism and the LGBTQ+ movement.
The Ukranian fashion brand designs women’s couture-to-wear, a unisex line and a bridal line.
Founder designer Ivan Frolov
Frolov became the first Ukrainian brand to become Swarovski® ingredient branding partner. Ivan was included in the Ukrainian list of ‘Top 30 Under 30 Awards’ in 2020. He is also one of the ambassadors of the ‘HeForShe’ movement in Ukraine.