Neutre opens pop-up dedicated to emerging Spanish design talent in London
The Spanish e-commerce platform specialised in selling fashion from homegrown brands and designers is set to host its second pop-up store at 123 Sydney Street, Chelsea, from 19th to 29th October. The event will spotlight a wide range of labels, including Mint & Rose, Rita Row, Colmillo de Morsa and Amt.
Neutre was founded only a year ago, with a mission to promote Spanish design abroad through an online store featuring a carefully curated selection of responsible brands based in the country, a business model which mirrors that of "Young British Designers", a platform which fulfils a similar function in the UK. After five years living in the United Kingdom and working in fashion communication, Neutre's founder Ágata Segurana found it "kind of exasperating to see that, in terms of Spanish fashion brands, people only knew Zara, Mango and little else," a realisation which led to her identifying a niche in the market focused on "all of that talent which was going to waste." "I wanted to create an international platform where both emerging and established designers could promote their work outside of our country," she added.
The project, which also aims to "help emerging designers grow, seeing as support in Spain is scarce," has been aided in its development by entrepreneurship grants and funding from British agencies. However, the looming shadow of Brexit has also influenced the business' development, forcing the company to move its warehouse to Spain. "In the light of uncertainty and the currently awkward situation for brands and companies, we have to prepare ourselves for all eventualities," stated Segurana.
Following the success of its first summer edition, Neutre is bringing its pop-up back to Chelsea, targeting consumers with strong purchasing power who are also interested in investing in sustainable, long-lasting products. A future project is also in the works for Notting Hill, with Neutre currently planning to host two events per season. "The biggest problem faced by most of the brands that we sell online is that it's very difficult to convince consumers and communicate to them that we are offering products of a very high quality which justifies their prices," explained Segurana. These physical stores are therefore an essential part of Neutre's marketing and communication strategy, providing the ideal space in which brands can show their wares to consumers, while also exchanging with them and receiving direct feedback. In view of the event's positive results, Neutre intends to implement its pop-up project in other European cities next year, aiming to capitalise on the good reception that its online platform has seen in other markets outside of the UK.
As it faces up to gargantuan fast-fashion rivals offering next-day delivery, Neutre proposes a catalogue built around established brands, independent designers such as Amt., fresh off the runway of 080 Barcelona Fashion, and other hidden treasures discovered through social networks. The latest addition to the lineup is 404, a Valencian knitwear brand focused on the values of traditional Spanish craftsmanship that the platforms also upholds. Looking to the future, there are currently no direct competitors that have adopted the same e-commerce model seeking to exclusively promote Spanish brands outside of their home country, making for a promising outlook for the company as it takes on the challenges that the coming months have to offer.
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