PARIS — As the fashion ecosystem makes its timid return to real-life events and COVID-19-related restrictions slowly begin to ease, trade show Tranoï was the first to brave a return to the physical format.
Staging a scaled back format with a selection of 24 emerging designers, Tranoï took to the Palais de Tokyo from June 25 to 27. The fruit of a new partnership with the Fédération de la Haute Couture et de la Mode, the event was held in tandem with Sphere, French fashion’s governing body’s showroom for emerging designers, with the aim of creating synergies between the two events at the fashion week hub.
“The Fédération’s role is to promote creativity, and ours is to help with the commercial angle. We select the brands together with Sphere’s selection committee, it allows us to have a complementary offer and have a broader point of view,” said Tranoï managing director Boris Provost of the partnership.
Despite a lack of visibility — buyers from outside France held off on deciding if they would travel until the very last minute — “it was important to be here physically,” Provost said. “It’s important to support Parisian creativity. Paris is the biggest fashion week, it attracts the most international buyers, and we wanted to partner with the Fédération and show a strong sign to the market.”
He was happy with turnout at the event, he said.
One corner of the atrium space was occupied with a livestreaming area so that the brands present could interact with buyers who had been unable to travel, a trial of a proposition that is destined to be reprised for future editions, creating links between the physical event and its online platform, Tranoï Link, which now has 220 brands and around 800 buyers registered.
“Even after we emerge from this period, there will be buyers that don’t travel, between the economic context and awareness of the environmental costs of long-distance travel,” Provost said.
In September, Tranoï will be present alongside Sphere once more at the Palais de Tokyo with around 50 young labels, and will also stage its main event, for more established brands, at the Palais de la Bourse. Subsequently, it plans to stage four such shows each year.
Among the labels present at the three-day showcase, newcomer Steven Passaro had seen a lot of interest for his collection — and is also being approached by larger labels for his innovative approach. The London College of Fashion alum develops his designs using digital patternmaking, removing the need for prototypes. His original tailored silhouettes — shorts with pleated side panels, a tuxedo jacket with a contrasting jagged collar — are made mainly using deadstock fabrics from LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton’s Nona Source platform, with prices ranging from 170 to 640 euros wholesale.
Emergency Room, a three-year-old label from Lebanon, employs seamstresses in Tripoli to craft its designs from secondhand garments sourced in the city’s souks. Its collection featured patchwork denims, shirts made from upcycled silk scarves and patchwork logo T-shirts. “We didn’t initially plan to export, because our concept is to source and sell locally, but with the financial crisis in Lebanon and the recent explosion, we decided to open up to exports to sustain our model,” said founder Eric Mathieu Ritter. Emergency Room’s retail prices range from $60 to $300.
Other standouts that had been resonating with buyers included 8IGB, a genderless brand from Paris’ 18th arrondissement, and Phileo, a sneaker label created two years ago by 19-year-old Phileo Landowsky.
The brand 8IGB elaborates quirky, colorful streetwear pieces, this season with an Americana influence. Highlights in the collection included a stitched-together trompe l’oeil T-shirt and tank top that could be worn in a variety of ways and a linen cowboy shirt with a button-on vest front, with prices ranging from 120 to 500 euros.
Phileo already includes four Dover Street Market among the stockists for his chunky luxury footwear, which is priced from 225 to 450 euros at retail. He was presenting designs including a collaboration with Louis Gabriel Nouchi that had shown on the runway earlier in the week.
If all goes to plan, the physical trade show model will be back with a vengeance come the fall, when schedules look to return to a pre-pandemic pace. “There is a real sense that things are bouncing back, it’s very dynamic,” said Tranoï marketing and communication director Constance Dubois.
As reported, September will kick off with WSN’s Who’s Next and its sister shows as well as the Bijorhca jewelry event and Eurovet’s lingerie and swimwear shows, running Sept. 3 to 6 at the Porte de Versailles. As well as Tranoï’s next event from Sept. 30 to Oct. 3, WSN’s Première Classe is also set for Oct. 1 to 4 in the Tuileries, in tandem with Paris Fashion Week.