This year we saw that Berlin, with its off-kilter mixture of the post-Soviet and the contemporary, the arty and the post-industrial, provides a perfect backdrop to fashion campaigns. First, Berlin appeared in Gucci’s Spring Summer ad, released in January and shot by Glen Luchford. Amazingly, the bohemian Gucci crowd, dressed in brocade and colourful silks, did fit in perfectly with the city, that is as much vintage-looking as it is cool. Shortly afterwards, the Berlin-based Matt Lambert disclosed his campaign for Givenchy pre-fall. Shot in Lambert’s characteristic brusque manner, the campaign captured the edgy appeal that has been attracting flocks of international creatives to Berlin.
WEST VS EAST
For years following the fall of the Wall, it was the eastern part of the town that was associated with all things fashionable. However, with the re-opening of the renovated Bikini House and C/O migrating to Charlottenburg, things started to change. In 2011 Andreas Murkudis opened a store in the former Tagesspiegel building in Potsdamer Strasse, and four years later Acne Studios moved in just around the corner, turning the formerly desolate street in the new cluster of coolness. Significantly, 2016 saw the renovation of the KaDeWe, the legendary department store that despite being a major tourist attraction remained one of the most conservative institutions. This year KaDeWe, headed now by energetic Vittorio Radice, has seen the start of a large-scale revamp, supervised by Rem Kolhaas’ OMA.
OUR FAVOURITE FASHION WEEK EVENTS
Continuously criticised for its lack of exciting shows, this year Berlin Fashion Week proved critics wrong. BFW presented a roster of young and interesting designers, we loved William Fan’s glamorous collection for Spring/Summer 2016 and the sophisticated take on fashion by designer-cum-sociologist Margot Charbonnier.
Ferrari Concept, the Berlin-and-New-York brand, founded by Paige Horinek in 2015, presents timelessly cool and extremely trendy pieces. Opting for simple cuts and minimalist colour palette, the brand makes truly covetable basics.
Sven Marquardt, the legendary bouncer of Berghain and a photographer collaborated with Bavarian footwear brand ITEM m6, shooting a campaign for their socks. The black-and-white picture channel the aura of alternative Berlin.
The much-missed Bread and Butter, a fashion trade show that went bankrupt in 2014, has been re-vamped by Zalando, who turned it into a fashion-meets-music event with Asap Rocky performing at the fair in September. Zalando introduced a new concept of labs for a more visual presentation of products. With Gigi Hadid promoting her collaboration with Tommy Hilfiger, adidas hosting a talk on their innovative strategies and a stunning Topshop presentation, the re-invented Bread and Butter was certainly an event to be at.