Revamped Berlin Fashion Week about to kick off with shows and special events galore
In the collective imagination, Berlin is synonymous with movement. A quick glance at the programme for the German capital's forthcoming fashion week, scheduled from 15th to 20th January, is enough to confirm this idea. Since the end of the Bread & Butter show, there had never been such a radical change in the week's official calendar: IMG no longer organises the Fashion Week, Panorama and the Premium group have split up the city's trade shows equally among themselves, and Fashion Council Germany has suggested, with the approval of the week's sponsor, Mercedes-Benz, that the Halle am Berghain (HAB), in the complex occupied by the mythical Berghain dance club, is likely to turn into one of Berlin's key fashion hubs, hosting the German avant-garde designers' catwalk shows. HAB is where the fashion week will in fact kick off, with a reception and a show on the evening of Wednesday 17th.
Altogether, the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week (MBFW) will host over 3,000 labels, and introduce an even greater number of Autumn/Winter 2018-19 collections. This season, the Kronprinz Palace, home to "Der Berliner Mode Salon" (the Berlin fashion show) and the "Vogue Salon", will reinvent itself as the focal point and centre of gravity for both high-end fashion and emerging made-in-Germany design talent.
From the Kronprinz Palace to E-Werk
On Tuesday morning at the Kronprinz Palace, Strenesse will open proceedings with the first of the week's shows and presentations. On Wednesday, the palace will then host the Woolmark Company, for the first event staged by the Australian organisation during the MBFW, entitled 'Let's Talk About Wool', followed by the 'Wool Lab', which will be open to the general public. Among the designers showing at the Kronprinz Palace, there will be Marina Hoermanseder, William Fan, Isabell Vollrath, Odeeh and Perret Schaad.
A plethora of other shows will liven up the embassies, restaurants and stores clustered around the Kraftwerk Berlin venue - which will also host two conferences by show organiser Messe Frankfurt's sustainable fashion platform: 'Fashiontec' and 'Fashionsustain', dedicated to technology innovation and sustainable development.
E-Werk, a venue created in a reclaimed power plant a stone's throw from Alexanderplatz, will instead host shows by Dawid Tomaszewski on Monday evening, then Ewa Herzog, Cashmere Victim, Riani, Sportalm Kitzbühel, Irene Luft, Maisonnoée and Bogner. This former techno-music temple is set to become increasingly influential on the Berlin fashion scene this winter.
Premium, Panorama & Co.
As for the trade shows, both Panorama and Premium have decided to feature in their programmes, whether directly or indirectly, several sustainable fashion initiatives. The Ethical Fashion Show and the Greenshowroom, as well as the Fashiontech event, will showcase their exhibitors in a new venue, Kraftwerk, which is linked up with the Premium show's shuttle service. Panorama has instead earmarked an area of about 1,000 m2 for the 'green' labels featured in Xoom, backed by the Innatex show, another sustainable fashion specialist.
The Premium show has set aside about 13,000 m2 in the Arena Berlin for its satellite events, Seek and Bright, specialised in urban fashion and with a penchant for skateboarding. Once again, they will focus chiefly on men's ready-to-wear apparel, exhibiting about 500 brands ranging from streetwear to footwear, accessories, gadgets, cosmetics, outerwear, sneakers and even camping equipment.
Premium itself is looking once again to impress buyers, showcasing 1,000 brands, 30% of them new entries, and 1,800 collections within its 24,000-m2 exhibition area at Gleisdreieck. At the nearby Kühlhaus venue, Premium will also organise for the first time the Show&Order event and its 'Retail Experience Space', presenting some 200 brands and collections.
Last summer, the Panorama Berlin show celebrated its tenth edition, and it keeps on growing. The show's main venue, next to the area reserved for Innatex, will now host the Selvedge Run event, at the Marshall-Haus site within the Messe Berlin complex. Through the 'Nova Concept' section, specialised in denim, casualwear and lifestyle collections, Selvedge Run will be able to offer a rewarding thematic complement to the main event.
The revamped Panorama show expects more than 50,000 visitors from about one hundred different countries. They will discover the collections of over 700 brands, across a 45,000-m2 exhibition area.
As for children's fashion, it will be featured at the Cookies show held at Palazzo Italia, which will also be the venue of the Playtime Berlin show, scheduled after the MBFW, on 23rd-24th January.
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