Hilda Henri Interview: Fall Winter 2014-2015

Hilda Henri is a gorgeous new children’s brand made in Austria that reminds me a bit of the movie Sound of Music. I can see a modern Von Trapp Family wearing these authentic Austrian made clothing made from milled loden, an Alpine farming fabric in pure new wool, that is normally used for traditional costumes.

hilda henri boys wool coat fall winter 2014

Hilda Herni Kids Finely Crafted Clothing

HILDA HENRI was founded in 2013 by fashion designer Verena Wondrak and features boys and girls finely-crafted jackets, coats and capes for sizes 1 to 12 years. Verena’s designs are inspired by old handcraft traditions, magical places in nature, enchanted buildings and the magic of childhood.

“I create clothing for children, not for little adults,” explains Verena. “The fashion of Hilda.Henri is cheeky, sometimes high-spirited, nevertheless strongly rooted. The individual pieces guarantee freedom of movement and are intended as favorite pieces that can grow with the child over the years.”

hilda henri mini me red coat fall winter 2014

The focus of the collections of HILDA.HENRI is milled loden, a felted fabric produced from boiled wool, refined with heat, water, and exercise. Milled loden is ideal for children’s clothing as it’s light, breathable, water-repellent, temperature-balancing, warming and cooling, and adapts to the wearer’s body shape.

Hilda.Henri Interview with Verena Wondrak at Playtime New York

At Playtime New York I had the opportunity to preview the Hilda.Henri Fall Winter 2014 Snow Mountain Fairy Collection where Verena found her inspiration in Russian folklore, the last nomads of the north and Czech fairy tales.

“I am particularly proud of my new coats! For the boys, I used a very traditional Austrian fabric ‘Kalmuk’, which was formerly very appreciated for its robustness by rafters, coachmen, and forest workers. However, I use it in my very own way: I have turned the fabric upside down! The typical ‘Wachau’ pattern adorns now the inner life of the garments. For the girls, I can make exclusive Jacquard. Special details like puff sleeves and buttons with subtle laser designs give the models an additional touch of couture. I’ve also included a number of mommy and me items in the collection,” Verena explains.

“After having a baby in 2010 I started designing for her. My favorite fabric is Walk or Walkloden in German, a felted fabric similar to boiled wool. All of my friends were interested in the clothes I designed for my daughter. So I said ok, what I want to do is create my own collection for children made with this special fabric. I started my first Hilda.Henri collection in 2013.

I’m using a very special material which is usually used in traditional costumes. I take this traditional fabric and breathe new life into it with my new designs and fresh colors. The material is perfect for children’s clothing as it breathes and warms you but it also cools.

Some of my favorite pieces in the Fall-Winter 2014 collection are my Maria Dress in a mustard color. The design is very special with buttons on the back with little laser motif flowers and wool borders.

For the boys, my favorite is this Louis coat. Usually, this robust fabric is used by foresters and shippers. So I made this into a “cool coat for the cool boys” in a different way.

I also love this Jacquard pattern that I created. First, it is knitted, then it is washed only with water and without chemical additives, and it’s all created in Austria.

For Autumn Winter it’s the first time that I have matching items tailored to both mother and child. You can see for example this dress with the mustard and sand combination and this red coat with the fringes on the edge.”