PARIS — One of the newest trade show organizers here is Carole de Bona, and she’s working up a diversified program.
She put together her first show in March 1995, on the Rue du Faubourg Saint Honore. Its aim was to provide a central space for young designers who needed commercial contacts.
In October 1995 she opened the Espace Carole de Bona, in leased space of some 15,000 square feet on four levels on the Place des Petits Peres. There she stages a twice-yearly women’s apparel show, coinciding, like several other trade shows, with the Paris designer ready-to-wear collections.
“We felt that there was nowhere for designers with a small budget to show,” said de Bona.
She now has between 25 and 30 women’s exhibitors, a number that is rising each season. And since de Bona rents the space on a yearly basis, her goal is to sublet it as much as possible for exhibitions and events. She also is negotiating to buy the property.
For the first time, she is organizing Off Design, a show for furniture and accessories designers that will run Jan. 10-15. And during men’s fashion week, the Espace Carole de Bona will hold a salon for 20 men’s wear designers, Jan. 24-28, 1997. That will be the first time she has done a men’s show.
“We will stage fashion shows during the men’s show. This space is perfect for this, and I feel it’s important to add atmosphere,” de Bona said. Another idea she is toying with is to present fabric trends for 1998 during the 1997 presentations.