Hanna Wolf (30) – Fashion Designer
The vibrant and trendy neighborhood called Glockenbach in Munich, Germany, is often compared to Berlin, London or New York - except that its cleaner, it has less graffiti and more efficient garbage collection. The area is home to scores of cafés, bars, restaurants, and stores, all competing for customers.
New to the area is KILENZ, Hanna Wolf’s atelier, and a hidden gem.
Having her own store that also serves as her creative home is the highlight of Wolf’s career. “Here, I can showcase both my product and myself”, she says. The lovingly renovated atelier in what used to be a shoemaker’s workshop has a stylish dollhouse feel that reflects Wolf’s aesthetic: elegant, minimalist, free from anything superfluous. When you step into the store, you will be greeted by her latest collection on your left, with rows of wooden shoe lasts hanging high above. Hanna Wolf shares the store and atelier with friend and shoemaker Lotte Post.
"Softer notes are more memorable.“
An encounter with Wolf is sure to brighten your spirits – and not just for fashion reasons. She has a winning charm, almost elfin beauty, and is quietly confident, skilled and well versed in her field. How can you make a name for yourself in the fashion world with such an unassuming air?
Being low-key doesn’t stop you making an impact. It might take longer, but the effect doesn’t wear off. I think people who get to know me are won over enough to come back. And that has more of an effect than just shouting the loudest!“
Wolf’s style? “Effortlessly casual, never trying too hard, but nonetheless natural and elegant. Her look is subtle and never over the top. “Softer notes are more memorable… I create fashion that makes a statement without trying,” she says, summarizing her approach, while unwittingly describing herself - she too makes a statement, without even trying.
It can take up to six months to produce a wedding dress and Hanna Wolf usually maintains a close dialog with her clients. “It’s a bit like going to the hairdresser,” she laughs. And what makes clients difficult? Her answer is unequivocal: “When they don’t know what they want.
"Sustainability is extremely important to me, as is the question of where things come from. I try to find fairly manufactured materials without hazardous substances – but that still exhibit the character that I need.“
Wolf on the other hand, always knew what she wanted. “Almost too much, even today,” she grins. As far back at the 11th grade, Wolf decided to train as a tailor instead of studying for her university entrance exam. “I knew exactly where I wanted to be!” This is an important attribute, as surviving in the fashion business is a challenge. “You need a lot of discipline and single-mindedness. There’s no one there to tell you what you need to do. It’s hard, but nice too.”
The 30-year-old fashion designer grew up around one of Germany’s first organic stores – a lifestyle that shaped her character. Hanna Wolf is extremely conscious about everything around her. “Sustainability is extremely important to me, as is the question of where things come from. I try to find fairly manufactured materials without hazardous substances – but that still exhibit the character that I need. White organic cotton is easy to get hold of, but I pay close attention to surfaces and textures and need special materials, which makes the selection fairly small.”
In general, Hanna Wolf attaches great importance to how things are produced and is able to recognize quality immediately: “I automatically reach for the most expensive products, as excellent craftsmanship is reflected in the price. These days, I tend to buy fewer things but in better quality.”
Hanna Wolf favors BIRKENSTOCKs, usually the MADRID style.
“I’m on my feet all day and like wearing open-toe shoes. BIRKENSTOCKs have proven their resilience and have a simple and rustic character. I like them.” They also go well with her aesthetic, “because they add a certain casual feel to the look on account of their unique materials and surfaces.”
What do you need to be well dressed? “A few high-quality items such as a good pair of jeans and a good pair of shoes,” she says, “essentials that go with everything and are easy to mix and match. And you can happily spend a bit more on them – because that’s what makes the difference.”