Visit Rio for sun, sea and serious fashion
With the buying season now upon us, and most independent retailers facing the decision as to which shows to attend for inspiration, I can tell you it doesn’t get much better than a buying trip to Rio de Janeiro during Rio Fashion Week, which took place last month.
Not only is the place a Mecca for swimwear, but it is fast becoming a fashion force to be taken seriously.
Brazil has a melting pot of design talent and is earning its rightful place on the fashion calendar. Once only regarded for Havaianas flip-flops, you can now visit Rio Fashion Week with focus, ready to bag a new label or two to add to your brands.
Although a relatively small show by European standards, its offer has been well thought through, giving the buyer an opportunity to dip their toe into the collections rather than have to over-commit to a full range. However, the Brazilian brands do have minimum orders at their discretion. And prices in Rio are not for the faint-hearted, but I have found some lovely collections that offer both a breath of fresh air and inspiration that my customers are going to love.
The fashion shows themselves are also hip, slick and professional, and in many cases a real spectacle, giving the audience something to drool over.
Not a bad start to the season. One show down, only another four to go. I’ll also be visiting Pure London and London Fashion Week, and Prêt-à-Porter and Tranoï in Paris. I’m looking forward to all of them as they always offer something of interest.
Let’s hope the sun is shining, the caipirinhas are flowing, the beaches are white and the girl from Ipanema is still swaying. Well, you can dream can’t you.
- Pamela Shiffer is owner of the eponymous womenswear independent in Primrose Hill, north London