It seems appropriate that Snezhana Paderina’s given name translates to “Snow White.” She cuts a sleek figure with her raven hair and ivory complexion, as do her creations. As a sophomore at New York’s Parsons School of Design, the 25-year-old can now be found toiling away in a design studio—a far cry from her native St. Petersburg, Russia, where she specialized in protecting computer systems from cyber attacks. Now, Paderina is parlaying her knack for science and technology into transforming the way designers think about the creative and production processes and is already gaining a reputation for her elegantly minimalist aesthetic.
Earlier this semester, Paderina was one of 15 Parsons students selected to participate in the annual Fusion Fashion Show, which pitted the students against their FIT counterparts. Her contribution: a collection of floor skimming dresses with 3D-printed nylon panels and accents. Paderina has tinkered with accessories as well: her towering “Fashion Waves” platform pump, an architectural marvel which calls to mind ocean currents, was produced during a course led by 3D fashion pioneer Francis Bitonti (of whom Dita von Teese is a fan).
Another recent experiment: Hollow plastic pendants that resemble a faceted stone, if one were to remove the gem’s faces, that dangle almost weightlessly from a silver chain body harness. Hers are the sort of details that can transform a (deceptively) simple-at-first-glance garment into a conversation piece, but if it sounds like a precise science, it’s not: “The shapes are always a bit of a surprise,” says Paderina, on the number sequences she plugs into the 3D modeling system to create her unique forms. “But I’m inspired by nature as much as by architecture and technology, so it’s nice to let things unfold.” Her next challenge? A design competition sponsored by Vogue Magazine to correspond with the Met Costume Institute’s exhibit “Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology” this August.
Get an insight into Paderina’s inspiration on Instagram @snezhanag and check out her work at snezhana.nyc
Photo credits: Cinzia Brandi, Snezhana Paderina and Djiun Wang.