Bulgarian-born designer Margarita Mileva spends around 90 hours painstakingly knotting rubber bands together to create wearable dresses. Her latest creation has about 18,500 rubber bands.
Back in 2011, she created a stunning pastel dress out of 14,235 pieces of rubbery office supplies. She beat that record by knotting together a 10-kilogram garment from orange and black rubber bands, inspired by the spirit of Polynesia and the tattoos of the Maori. It took 150 hours to complete, and comes with matching rubber band shoes. “I always had an eye for jewelry and love to design clothes, knit and make collages,” 49-year-old Mileva says. “So when I started making jewelry from reusing paperclips, punched business cards and rubber bands, it didn’t come as a surprise to anyone. Rubber band dresses were the next step – I am trying to create unique pieces that I would like to be seen as conversation openers.”
Although she admits her fashionable rubber band dresses are pretty heavy and she has never worn them herself, Margarita says the models really like them. She does wear many of the rubber band accessories she designs, and likes to see people’s reactions. If you’re looking for a unique wedding dress to surprise everyone on your big day, the New-York-based designer says she is open to taking custom orders. She also sells rubber band accessories through her Etsy shop.