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Lights, Camera, Fashion!

Pitti Bimbo show rolls out the red carpet for buyers.

“Live Movie,” the theme of the 86th edition of Pitti Immagine Bimbo in Florence, Italy, had attendees feeling like Hollywood royalty with big anniversaries, special events and catwalk shows over three cinema-inspired days. From emerging innovators to some of the most influential designer labels in children’s fashion, the fair showcased 578 brands and attracted more than 10,000 visitors across 60 countries.

Many exhibitors included small, independent brands from outside the industry that are applying their skills to childrenswear, according to Raffaello Napoleone, CEO of Pitti Immagine. “These are ideas with a high level of creativity and strong personal stories,” he says. “The passion of their founders is creating important niches in the market. It’s increasingly about creative and specialized companies, born and promoted through social networks.”

Awareness of the origin of products and quality of production were key aspects as well, according to Napoleone. “I’m seeing an increasingly ethical and ecological approach to educate children to a lifestyle based on the reality that surrounds them,” he says. “Always clearly marked by the creativity of ideas, styles and cultural references.”    

The mini-me movement continued to have major prevalence at the show. Nicole Dillon, a buyer at Bergdorf Goodman, noted Stella McCartney, Moncler, Golden Goose, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Neil Barrett and Army by Yves Solomon as leading high-end labels with takedown offerings. “Decades ago, the childrenswear buyer was probably looking more for party dresses, more special occasion looks,” she says. Today, Dillon is looking at bloggers, adult runways and children on the street for inspiration on what to buy as well. “Our clients want elevated play clothes,” she says. “They want their child to look fashionable for all aspects of the day.”     

Napoleone says “self-expression” is another strong movement. “Pieces are easy to put together and range from daring outfits to more laidback ones, giving life to personal styles,” he says, noting that it includes lots of layering. “More and more buyers are looking for special products and fanciful accessories to add to consolidated brands,” he adds. “To enrich the perception of childrenswear, which is increasingly becoming more sophisticated, brands don’t just want to express a unique style identity but a lifestyle.”

New Noir

The yin and yang of black and white: some believe the palette isn’t playful or practical, while others see it in step with the mini-me movement. The choice is up to buyers.

Shine On

Fall’s forecast is for collections bedecked with sequins, glitter and all types of sparkle in every color under the rainbow. The bedazzled apparel and accessories range from reversible sequins to all-over glitter statements.

Red Alert!

Bordeaux, maroon, cherry, wine and other red haute shades serve as the season’s statement hue.

Name Game

Logos are back in a big way across tees, up pant legs and all over accessories. The heavily branded garments reflect a ’90s influence coming back into fashion.

Get Groovy

The ’70s areback—again. A palette of mustards, mid-tone blues, bottle greens and rusty reds, as well as a plethora of plaids and shag materials look to be in the running next fall.

Just Fur You

No longer just for rich socialites or a granny-chic statement, dyed faux furs—from bold blues to soft blush pinks—is the “It” embellishment of Fall ’18. 


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