At the January 2006 shows, a squad of photographers took pictures of hundreds of visitors and exhibitors.
TITLE BREAD & BUTTER EUROVISION tradeshows for selected brands
SLOGAN Bread & Butter Community
DATES BBBarcelona: July 5-7, 2006; BBBerlin: July 14-16, 2006
EXHIBITORS 1,156 in total (900-plus in Barcelona)
VISITORS 73,774 in total (53,774 in Barcelona)
In the July 2006 edition the results of their labours were used for possibly B&B’s most memorable campaign, which saw 600 heads used on about 100 different marketing images. The huge posters dotted around the Fira de Barcelona were particularly striking.
The compelling message of the campaign celebrated the B&B Community. What had started out as simply an elite insiders’ event in Cologne had grown to an international get-together of extraordinary proportions. Having made first Berlin and then Barcelona a new and authentic fashion destination, Karl-Heinz Müller had much bigger ideas.
He announced at the show that he envisaged a concept of Fashion Week Europe, which would involve elements such as a music festival and a pre-show B&B Business Club in Ibiza. These initiatives never materialised, but even the notion of them was an indication of the power that B&B now wielded.
In the sunshine of Barcelona, once again smaller British independents stayed away because of tough retailing conditions. One brand’s sales director told Drapers: “Quite a few indies haven’t paid their bills this spring and so are avoiding meeting suppliers anywhere.” The Barcelona event was great for export-minded British brands as it was now pulling in significant numbers of buyers from northern Europe as well as the southerners who had supported it from the start.
Trendwise, the market was still awaiting new direction as the main looks included warmed-over versions of striped polo shirts, tattoo-print tees, cowboy shirts, slim-fit jeans and the easy-to-wear boyfriend cut for girls. Workwear and military looks - epitomised by the ubiquitous cargo shorts - continued to offer an alternative to jeans.
As if to suit the mood of the buyers, there was a lot of grey in collections, although the “tequila sunrise” of reds, pinks and yellows brought a splash of sunshine to women’s styles. Continuing the move towards a cleaner look, preppy and heritage styles brought a cool nerdy look to the fair.
I hated Barcelona as it’s a moody city and we always did way more business in Berlin. At the latest Berlin show, three Chinese people came on our stand. When we spoke I learnt they’d been researching our brand and had just stumbled across us. They wanted to represent us in China alongside their other 400 franchise stores. The result is that we will be launching Luke in China for spring 2012. You have to be in it to win it, I suppose!