Werkstatt is a pattern development studio located in New York’s Garment District. Founded in 2008 by Tina Schenk, the company specializes in creative, intelligent and well-constructed garment development for many high-end fashion houses.
In her native Germany Tina studied patternmaking and men’s tailoring, which led to her first experience in the industry as a tailor’s apprentice making custom men’s suits. It was then that Tina began accumulating her fundamental knowledge that eventually transitioned into positions leading the ateliers of Helmut Lang and Karl Lagerfeld, which offered a much less traditional approach to fashion. Through these experiences she realized the importance of fully understanding the designer’s vision in order to successfully translate their sketches and ideas into final garments.
While working at these companies and also later managing the ateliers for other designers such as Calvin Klein Collection and Isabel Toledo for Anne Klein, Tina recognized the need for a service that could provide a direct extension of the individual designers’ ateliers. Even with all of the in-house resources at hand, there was still a need for outside help. She found it nearly impossible to find a pattern service that could seamlessly translate the designer’s intentions. Hence from that lengthy search, Werkstatt was conceived.
The name ‘Werkstatt’ is a link to Tina’s German roots and literally means ‘work place’. It is here that relationships with designers are formed and, through Werkstatt’s focus on understanding each designer’s needs, creative collaboration can thrive.
The FMI grant will help support updated technology, new Alvanon dress forms, and capital improvements.