Studio Visit: Fräulein Kink

Kink it up a notch.

Bedroom bondage, that once niche category of (shall we say, questionable) roadside sex shops, is now a dominating fashion force that melds luxury boudoir sensibilities with S&M accoutrement, and that’s thanks in part to the work of kink genius Miss Nicole (her preferred moniker), founder and owner of Fräulein Kink. The Berlin-based company is like Marriage Italian Style meets Eyes Wide Shut: beautiful, indulgent, libertine. We sat down with the entrepreneur to talk about following her heart (and a hottie), why internationals do it better, and the femme fatale who started it all: Catwoman.

Tell us about your professional trajectory and how you came to found Fraulein Kink.
Well, it started when I was a little kid! I had a very good imagination and loved wearing costumes, pretending to be Catwoman and Wonder Woman were two of my faves. I was always interested in art, and as a young teenager started becoming interested in fashion. I decided to follow my dream and move to New York to study at the Fashion Institute of Technology. My last course was abroad in London, and after graduating, I traveled around Europe visiting some friends. Berlin was my last stop before heading back to New York, and three days before I had to head home, love struck with a German! I decided to follow my heart and move to Berlin, and not long after, Fräulein Kink was born.

Miss Nicole, middle bottom row, sits with her international team of kink geniuses.

Berlin is a very creative city; how has it influenced your designs?
It’s so true–Berlin is such a vibrant and alive city–especially in the summertime. There are so many artistic and creative people from all over of the world, and I think that diversity is what makes it such an inspirational and influential city for artists. Our current Kink team members are from London, Croatia, Australia, Italy, and Costa Rica. It’s great to collaborate and work together with so many different cultures, but it’s exactly that type of openness to new, fresh ideas that makes Berlin so special!

What do you love the most about your work, and what sucks?
I truly love my work! The best part is that I get to be creative, work with a great team, and be my own boss–which is especially rad. What sucks is I have to be very disciplined and work long hours. Since we distribute worldwide, we have to accommodate many time zones. In the morning we are chatting with Asia and Australia, during the day with Europe, and in the evening with our U.S. clients.

Where do you draw your inspiration from?
All things Sex and Fashion; the two go hand-in-hand. I am inspired in so many different ways! Sometimes it’s the materials–love when our designs feel good on the skin; colors as well; like rose gold also textures–we have been playing around with sculpting leather. Other times it’s moods and images (Catwoman still inspires me today! This is why each collection has a new signature Kitten Look). Traveling and experiencing other cultures is one of the best ways to be inspired. There is so much vibrance in the world!

Walk us through your process from concept to completion.
After inspiration strikes and the concept is solid, I start by playing around with the style of items to feature. Part of our process is to envision what accessories this kind of woman would want to wear and what would make her feel sexy. It’s super important to think about the collection from her perspective. The team and I then start to play around and create samples in our Berlin studio. Finally, we handcraft the entire collection and arrange a photo shoot.

What professional accomplishment are you most proud of?
I’ve had a few milestones I’m proud of, but what honestly means the most to me is that I’ve built a great team that loves what they do as much as I do. Each of us puts our heart and soul into this work.

How do you feel that your line empowers women?
There’s a real power in female sexuality, and our designs tap into that; they’re feminine, flirty, playful–and they mix in a high fashion element, which elevates the energy. More than anything, we want women to feel sexy and confident when they wear Fräulein Kink. When you feel glamorous and beautiful, it’s a very powerful thing!

What’s on the horizon for Fraulein Kink?
Big things! We are growing and growing. We have some interesting collaborations opportunities on the horizon. Personally, I have been selected for a Masters Accessories program. It’s a year long personalized program working directly with industry professionals who help accelerate your brand to the next level. Very excited to see what the future holds for Fräulein Kink!

‘Tis the season to be kinky. Get some.

Photos by Camilla Camaglia