BARCELONA — The talk of the ready-to-wear shows — both here and in Madrid — was the catfight raging between the two cities. The debacle began when the Spanish government announced its global plan for the fashion industry last year....
BARCELONA — The talk of the ready-to-wear shows — both here and in Madrid — was the catfight raging between the two cities. The debacle began when the Spanish government announced its global plan for the fashion industry last year. The plan called for one "universal" runway show per season — not one runway show per city per season.
But which city would do the honors? Industry leaders said roughly 75 percent of the domestic apparel sector is produced here, so Barcelona is more deserving. Whatever the reason, the Catalan capital pulled out the stops recently in order to be el numero uno. For instance, the September show, which ran from the 3rd to the 9th at Montjuïc’s Palacio 1, changed its name — and concept — from Moda Barcelona to Semana Internacional de la Moda Barcelona, or Barcelona’s International Fashion Week. More than 40 designers and manufacturers participated in seven days of catwalk presentations side-by-side with a small trade fair — 152 exhibitors stretching more than 61,000 square feet. The week offered fashion-themed films and photo exhibitions and a lively cultural program. Jordi Pujol who is president of the regional government, La Generalitat, a major financial supporter of Barcelona’s fashion week, hosted a high-powered dinner in the presidential palau (palace in Catalan) to help boost Barcelona’s image as the fashion capital of Spain. (According to published reports, the Generalitat contributed three million euros to Barcelona’s fashion sector this year.)The dinner honored local designers Antonio Miro (for his 20-year career) and Josep Font (for his promising international trajectory). Pedro Almodóvar (in Armani) was rewarded for shooting his Oscar-winning film, "Todo Sobre Mi Madre," in Barcelona. The director arrived on the arm of Madrid megaretailer Elena Benarroch, owner of Madrid’s chicest multibrand store, as well as a Walter Steiger store. Madrid’s fashion week, Semana Internacional de la Moda (or SIMM) continues to go it alone, with no government help, said Pola Iglesias, director.
"There is no external funding. IFEMA (Madrid’s trade fair organizer) has nothing to do with the government. It is an open company. The fairs pay for themselves from exhibitor and entrance fees; each fair has its own budget. Trade events are more important than ever," she emphasized. "Personal contact and the chance to touch the product are fundamental to commercial success."According to published reports, IFEMA’s revenues last year totalled 103 million euros, with a profit of 17.6 million euros. For 2002, revenues are expected to reach 131 million euros, with an estimated profit of 22.7 million euros. Held at the Juan Carlos I fairgrounds, Madrid’s September fairs registered significant increases, according to fair organizers, who added there is no indication that trend won’t continue.
SIMM vendors increased 6 percent over September 2001, to 799 from 27 countries, and they spread over 15 percent more space or 234,000 square feet. The ready-to-wear fair ran Aug. 30 to Sept. 2.
Modacalzado, the Spanish shoe show, and IBERPIEL, a small leathergoods fair, held in tandem Sept. 27 to 29 totalled a 7.8 percent increase in visitors — to 23,251 — over fall 2001. Included in these figures were 2,367 buyers from other countries, meaning foreign attendance rose 25.2 percent.
Textilmoda, a textile fair for apparel manufacturers, held its third edition Sept. 3 to 5, with an attendance total of 3,759, up 5 percent over the previous year. Two-hundred and eighty-two foreigners, a 50 percent increase, came from Portugal, Ireland, Mexico and Chile. Coinciding with the ferias and to highlight Madrid’s preeminence in the world of international fashion, IFEMA blanketed the Spanish capital and foreign markets with cartels and banners proclaiming Madrid vive la moda (Madrid lives fashion) at a purported cost of 640,000 euros. The promotional campaign will continue next year, sources said.
In terms of Barcelona’s ability to draw crowds, according to figures provided by fair organizer Flaqué Int., upward of 25,000 attended the runway shows while Salon Gaudi Mujer, the trade event, drew 7,594 visitors, with 38 percent from the province of Cataluña; 32 percent from the rest of Spain; and 30 percent foreigners — a hike of 10 percent over the previous edition, organizers said. Buyers came from France, Belgium, Holland, the U.K. and Russia. In general, vendors said the trade fair was strictly a local event. They agreed the global economic downturn and confusion over the euro played a big part in keeping retailers away.
"The problem with the euro has affected consumers all over Europe. They are reluctant to buy because they’re afraid of how much they’re spending," said one exhibitor. "It’s been a tough year; multibrand stores in Spain are really struggling," said Anna Camprodon, export sales manager of Armand Basi, one of Barcelona’s heaviest hitters. Meanwhile, Basi is consolidating product and image."The most effective way to promote a total look, which is what we’re after, is through our own stores. With 13 retail outlets in Spain, we’re covered, more or less. Currently, we are concentrating on new markets in the U.K. [where Basi has two stores, in London and Birmingham] and Scotland. "In the U.S., both Macy’s West and Nordstrom picked up Basi’s winter 2003 line," Camprodon said.
According to Alex Flaqué, the executive director of Barcelona’s fashion week, next year’s edition (Feb. 4 to 7 for the Gaudi runway shows and Feb. 7 to 9 for the trade fair) will have the same format and cultural offerings as September 2002, "only better, with more foreign participation — that, I guarantee."
@fearofgod and @maxfieldla have teamed up on a pop-up installation. The store, located in the gallery space across from Maxfield’s Melrose Ave location, is the site of the brand’s House of God pop-up in which Fear of God founder @jerrylorenzo has created a church-inspired installation. A dozen vintage church pews sit in front of an LED screen playing 90s gospel singers in an effort to re-create an environment akin to a Southern Baptist Church, Lorenzo explained. Read more about the pop-up on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: Jennifer Johnson)
Known for his sleek, sophisticated American glamour, Norman Norell is the subject of an upcoming exhibition at @fitnyc. “Norell: Dean of American Fashion,” which runs from February 9 through April 14, will feature approximately 100 ensembles and accessories. His best work is exemplified by the designer’s glittering “mermaid” gowns frosted with thousands of hand-sewn sequins – like the one pictured. (📷: William Helburn) #wwdfashion
For pre-fall 2018, @balmain didn’t let go of the glitz. A crystal embroidered baseball jacket priced at around $40,000 hangs in the “couture” section of the brand’s first men’s pre-collection. Sporting the words “Balmain Army” across the back, the item took around two months to make. “When it was completed, it was like Christmas, it was like, ‘It’s done, it’s exactly what I wanted,’” said Balmain’s creative director @olivier_rousteing during a tour of the collection in a Paris showroom on Monday. #wwdfashion
Eighty degree temperatures and outdoor installations at the annual Art Basel Miami Beach called for bright, elevated beachwear. See more street style pictures on WWD.com. #theyarewearing #ABMB (📷: @lifeinreverie)
Following September’s emotional tribute to her brother Gianni, Donatella Versace wanted to bring the spring show’s deep sense of intimacy to her @versace_official pre-fall collection. Donatella found inspiration in Versace Palazzo in Milan and from Gianni’s opulent apartment. Archival patterns and new motifs were splashed on silk shirtdresses and fitted jersey frocks. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com. #wwdfashion
Demna Gvasalia continues to shake up the Paris fashion calendar — and experiment with new runway timetables for his @vetements_official brand. WWD has learned that Vetements plans to stage its next coed show for the fall 2018 season on January 19 during Men’s Fashion Week in the French capital. Details about the timing and venue have not been confirmed — stay tuned on WWD.com to catch the latest. #wwdnews (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo)
@zacposen's go-to holiday gift? Cookies! "I'll usually bake cookies and send them as a gift," said the designer, who recently released his cookbook "Cooking With Zac: Recipes from Rustic to Refined." Get the recipe for his Brown Butter-Chocolate Chip Cookies via link in bio 🍪🍪🍪 #wwdeye #cookingwithzac
For @monsemaison’s pre-fall 2018 collection, Fernando Garcia and Laura Kim honed in on the brand’s many signatures — men’s wear, which was tweaked and feminized through deconstruction, proportion play and lots of bare shoulders. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
On Friday night, @yohjiyamamotoofficial received the Design for Asia Lifetime Achievement Award in Hong Kong. The 75-year-old designer has been celebrated for many years and is best known for his dark and avant-garde tailoring. “In my long career, in design, architecture, [I’ve been to] so many parties, this is the very first time that I have such a warm feeling, I really appreciate this,” Yamamoto said. #wwdfashion (📷: @dominiquemaitre)