Courtesy Bread & Butter
Bread & Butter - Custo home
Barcelona has a long-standing textile tradition ranging from the La Ribera district—once the heart of the local cloth trade and now home to the city’s textile museum—to the bustling 18th-century Sant Marti factories spinning calico and cotton. So it is fitting that one of Europe’s most prestigious international trade fairs for contemporary clothing should find its home in the Catalan capital.
The Bread & Butter (B&B) trade show began in Germany in 2001, where it ran alongside Cologne Men’s Fashion Week, showcasing 50 independent clothing labels to 5,000 viewers from the fashion industry. In July 2005, B&B had its first outing in Barcelona and in 2007 the team decided that the Barcelona branch of the event was so successful that they stopped hosting the fair in Germany, and focused their efforts on transforming the Fira Barcelona site, near Plaça d’Espanya, into a twice-a-year haven for street-fashion junkies and industry professionals.
After a storming success this winter, with January’s ‘Bread & Butter King Size’, which attracted almost 100,000 visitors from 100 different countries to the nearly 1,000 different brands, the organisers are gearing up for a second 2008 round when the summer show, headlined ‘New Order’, comes to town from July 2nd to 4th, 2008.
So far, more than 800 brands have registered to take part in this edition of Bread & Butter, ranging from the super-established to the avant garde. CK Calvin Klein will be displaying their wares along with Ben Sherman, Adidas Originals Eyewear, French Connection and Hilfiger Denim. Juicy Couture, who set off the early-Noughties tracksuit trend, have already signed up for the July fair, as have edgy T-shirt designers Controversial People of Honour. Meanwhile, celebrities are also making sure they get in on the action: Victoria Beckham’s denim range (dVb) will be exhibiting, as well as Gisele Bündchen’s fashion label and Björn Borg’s range of underwear.
The show is geared toward insiders in the fashion world, and the organisers aim to create a ‘meeting point for buyers, traders and representatives from the textile industry press’. Here, visitors can browse the brands, party with the designers and benefit from the show’s underlying principle of ‘fun and profit’. Industry insider Nicole Ianniello told Metropolitan that the show ties up music, fashion, and art all in one three-day event. At January’s Bread & Butter she helped organise a party for the New York-based fashion magazine FANK 151. “The show allows you to see old friends and reconnect with people that all have creative minds and common interests.”
The event also gets the thumbs up for playing the green card. Eco-blog TreeHugger.com were delighted to see CO2 neutral visitor goody bags at the January show, made by Danish company Re-Bag, who teamed up with the organisation Climate Care. A spokesperson for British fair trade clothing label Komodo said that the trade show is a good platform to show new collections. “It’s visited by buyers of several European countries, mainly southern Europe, and that’s interesting for us.”
Even when the stalls are all packed up and the show has left town, there’s one group of locals who are still feeling the benefits year round. Bread & Butter’s own merchandise is designed and sold through the ‘Fetish for Charity’ label, which donates its profits to Casal del Infants del Raval, a 24-year-old charity working to improve the lives of socially-excluded families in various districts of Barcelona.
For more information on Bread & Butter or the Fetish for Charity range, visit www.breadandbutter.com