Bread and Butter Berlin’s new location at Tempelhof

At Label Networks, we cover many of the top street, sport, urban, and contemporary fashion trade shows as part of our global youth culture coverage. After 9 years averaging at least 10 trade shows globally per year, one of our favorites continues to be Bread & Butter, the well-known European show featuring leading brands in denim, street, sport, and urbanwear. One reason why this show resonates with us is that such attention to detail, ranging from the architecture of the space, to unique hall concepts, festivities, food, and lounge areas makes it feel more like an inspirational networking event than a typical convention-center set-up.

Now moving back to Berlin after 4 years Barcelona, on July 1-3, the show will debut at the famed Berlin Tempelhof. Typical of B&B’s style, there are several unique ideas. First, there are 9 different “halls” or areas created with respective shop-like concepts, each with their own logo, look, and feel, including the most popular area, Denim Base, then Sport & Street, Street Fashion, Fashion Now, Style Society, Urban Superior Women’s (now separated from men’s), Urban Superior Men’s, L.O.C.K., and a sourcing area called obviously, Source. Depending on where a brand fits into each specific category or “store” is where they’re placed, making it an easier find, yet exciting way to define a fashion subculture.

Bread and Butter’s various section logos

It’s also quite interesting that when discussing Bread & Butter, the Managing Director, Karl-Heinz Muller always drops a statement about architecture. For Tempelhof, and the upcoming show, Karl-Heinz stated that “The rebuilding is nearly finished. Our architects have done a very good job. Everything is on time, everything will be finished.” This strikes a chord with fashion players who understand the importance of architecture in design and structure towards creating a visually inspiring event -as though the actual “space” is as significant (a character playing it’s own roll in the over picture) towards generating the most interaction from brands, retailers, and other attendees.

There’s also an area where people simply gather to network, listen to music, and attend special events called the Luna Park. At this show, G-Star will once again be previewing their fashion runway show (always a show-stopper and must-see event), and Wrangler will introduce their “Wheel of Death” -a motorcycle steep-wall show. Opening night, June 30, features the Swedish band on the rise, Mando Diao.

Other points to note are that Bread & Butter often features excellent choices in food and catered areas (not costly cafeteria style but more intimate settings and many of them), including featured eco-friendly or unique eateries and caf? areas, which we have to say, both Pool and Project Fashion Trade Shows have picked-up on. Finally, the first to actually call their trade show guide a “Bible” as in Bread & Butter Fashion Bible, while this time it’s back to the glossy magazine version (economic hard times don’t probably justify the hardcover, metallic-edged page version), Bread & Butter’s trade show guide will undoubtedly stand out on its own for interesting features, images, and information on attending brands (not to mention that it’s considerately translated into English, French, German, Italian, and Spanish).

On a final note, Bread & Butter offers it’s own event merch with proceeds going to a children’s organization that they’ve supported for years. It’s the only trade show we’ve ever attended where one wants to buy the logo-ed T-shirts, tops, sweaters, military-like jackets, caps, boots, computer bags, not only because it’s for a good cause, but the styles, colors, and choices combined with the credibility of the show, attract attendees to want to buy the merch to show their own cred for having attended. Like a limited-edition music concert T.

With the move to Berlin, we expect that the show will probably generate more attention from guests from the United States, Scandinavia, and Japan -all areas that it seemed Bread & Butter Barcelona couldn’t quite capture in the numbers they were hoping for. In the last 2 years, we’ve also noticed the “divide” between northern Europe and southern Europe, and the growing number of exhibitors and attendees from Eastern Europe. Hopefully the Berlin location will be more conducive for a broader range of nations. Still, for brands and retailers trying to tap into the European marketplace in general, Bread & Butter remains the show to check-out, especially the ever-popular summer show in July, as the unofficial kick-off to the upcoming trade show season in the next few months.

For more stories from Label Networks on Bread & Butter, do a key-word search under “bread” or “butter.”