Berlin takes the next stepTuesday, 25 January 2011
The trade visitors crowded Bread & Butter, the most important show for denim and urban wear in the world, held at the former Tempelhof airport for the fourth time. The share of international buyers rose to 70 percent. The organisers of the skate and street wear show Bright were equally pleased with the rising interest from abroad. They estimated the international share of the overall visitor number to be 50 percent. These figures alone indicate that Berlin is increasingly developing into a centre of attraction for industry representatives from around the world.
The design-oriented fashion show Premium expanded its capacities by 3‘000 square metres ahead of time, for the first time providing space for about 1‘000 collections which is a new record. According to preliminary estimates, a growing number of visitors were also expected in the halls of the former Gleisdreieck freight depot.
The eco-fashion segment played a strong role again. The largest show of its kind, Thekey.to relocated after the rapid growth in the past seasons and was held in the Columbia Hall for the first time. The Greenshowroom, focusing on high-end labels with an ecological flair was held at the Luxury hotel Adlon as usual. “We are extremely satisfied with the consistent development of our visitor’s numbers” summarised Magdalena Schaffrin, one of the organisers.
An environment-related premiere was also celebrated this week: the eco-fashion pioneer Hess Natur of Butzbach was handing out its “Humanity in Fashion“ award for the first time. Three young designers who are creating sustainable fashion were nominated and Janosch Mallwitz was the winner. The first young designers had already received prices, when Premium was handing out its “Young Designers Awards“. This time, the renowned prices were awarded to the Liebig label of Berlin (Women’s wear), Sleep is Commercial (Menswear) and Maripossa from Australia (Accessories).
However, it did not only become apparent at the fairs that Berlin is continuing its upward trend. The fashion shows within the scope of the Mercedes Benz Fashion Week demonstrated that the most important designers of the capital achieved a new level of quality. Established brands such as Michalsky, Kaviar Gauche, Lala Berlin or Mongrels in Common all presented convincing collections. Newcomers such as Michael Sontag and Perret Schaad continued their promising development. They are certainly a force to be reckoned with in the future.
The majority of other German brands displayed in the capital were pleasing too. The fashion boutique Rena Lange of Munich presented a lovingly polished collection with a strong retro feel. Escada celebrated its return to Berlin with a large presence of stars, albeit at a manageable scale. The new collection of the second line Escada Sport offered a quintessence of sportive alpine winter fashion of the recent past. The global company group Hugo Boss which traditionally arranges the largest show of the Fashion Week was represented with its design-focused line Hugo this time, for which head designer Eyan Allen created a highly professional, yet not very exciting collection.
However, not only German designers were present at the Mercedes Benz Fashion Week. The Belgian avant-garde label A.F. Vandevorst had the privilege of opening the proceedings of the shows at Bebelplatz with its second line A.Friend. Meanwhile, Lena Hoschek of Austria has become a regular with her fashion inspired by the 1950s. The three Swedish designers Camilla Norrback, Ida Sjöstedt and Diana Orving as well as the Danish label Bllack Noir which concluded the fashion week on Saturday night made for a strong Scandinavian presence. And a star guest from the USA was present again this season: After Calvin Klein in the summer, it was the denim label Guess this time, bridging the gap between the Mercedes Benz Fashion Week and the jeans fair Bread & Butter.
From our correspondent in Berlin
Photo catwalk: A.Friend, A.F. Vandevorst