Housed in the Pitti Palace (or Palazzo), this is the only international fair in the world that offers a complete picture of every possible aspect of children’s fashions. Created in 1975, Pitti Bimbo launched the first runway shows and events dedicated to this market; and it is held in Florence twice a year.
For 45 years now this International children’s fashion and kids’ lifestyles brought together at Pitti Bimbo to creatively respond to the complexities of this massive market. Quality brands from all over the world, 553 brands to be exact, were placed in different sections throughout the fair, in sections categorized in different ways, including research and attention to topics focused on the environment and sustainability. Unlike most trade shows, the way Pitti Bimbo had it laid out was incredible. From new comers, to sporty, to fancy, to eco-friendly and so much more, it was so easy to scout out some of our old and new favorites! And lets not forget about, the runway shows, events, presentations and large group discussions.
The theme for this years winter show was “Show Your Flags at Pitti.” A flag is never a silent fabric, as it always has something to say, and consistently arouses emotions because it speaks universal messages. Expressive, enthusiastic, insolent!
Our first day, we scouted some of brands we’ve been working with for years. Velveteen continues to inspire us year after year, and I’ve asked their staff repeatedly if I could get it in my size! Amiki childrenswear has become is a dear friend of mine over time, and has the sweetest bespoke nightgowns and pajamas for both boys and girls. If you are looking for the chicest fancy dresses, Tutu du Monde, and Michelle Vintage are just the lines for you! Il Gufo continues to shine with a classic style, and we loved Dino Ski’s school bus set up in the middle of the Pitti Palace.
The flow of the show was so pleasant. While we walked the fair, we were also treated to off sight and on-sight activities like the Empori0 Armani rooftop cocktail hour during sunset. Petit Bateau + Treedom held a celebration at La Menagerie to mark their collab which yielded a new environmentally and socially sustainable project: an exclusive birth kit in organic cotton, for newborns.
Having a monthly feature of books for kids on SITC each month, I enjoyed the book selection of C’era Una Volta, who’s goal is to bring children even closer to the discovery of word, stories, and emotions on paper. And I loved their clothing line, which I will discuss in a bit.
And let’s chat about our breakfast at the Pucci Palace to preview the Autumn/Winter 2020-21 collections. That was by far such a highlight of our travels for sure. The decor in the palace alone was such an inspiration.
Let’s chat about the runway shows! These shows weren’t your ten minutes of runway and done. They incorporated magicians and vocal performances that left us speechless each and every time!
The Fashion Shows:
Children’s Fashion From Spain
The brands represented were Abel & Lula, Boboli, Mayoral, and Tuc Tuc, with a theme of climate change and protecting our environment. The children walked the cat walk displaying not just the gorgeous pieces and looks, but also signs and props to voice concerns and employ hope around the subject. Three quarters through the show, a young boy around 14 years old came on stage and sang a rendition to Imagine by John Lennon. The entire experience was absolutely moving and incredible, and it was hands down one of the best fashion shows I’ve ever attended.
United Colors Of Benetton
While United Colors Of Benetton has long been a popular brand around the world, it was their first ever show at Pitti Bimbo. Curated by their new designer Jean-Charles de Castelbajac there was no shortage of color and fun. He has recreated his famous teddy bear coat, initially made for madonna, for Benetton! The collection featured everything we know and love about United Colors of Benetton, along with all his personal unique touches.
The Apartment section of the Pitti Bimbo fair features international brands with a unique sophistication aimed towards buyers of more exclusive boutiques. Not all brands in “The Apartment” were included in the show but the ones who were include Amelie et Sophie, Paade, Pero, Piccola Ludo, Raspberry Plum (already one of my favorites), and Velveteen. These brands each posses their own unique style and essence. Raspberry Plum’s newest collection was influenced about the flower power era of the 70’s, with an amazing peace and love vibe. Velveteen always delivers gorgeous delicate detailed touches. The entire show made for a very beautifully curated experience.
The final show of the fair, KIDZFIZZ, featured lesser known, up and coming brands that Pitti truly believes in. This show offers extra exposure that could launch them in the right direction. I love how supportive the entire Pitti team is in helping these designers and their futures. Brands included C’era Una Volta, Donsje Amsterdam, Infantium Victoria, Ledum, Mia Bu Milano, Miss LRay, Nupkeet 1946, Phi Clothing and Alitsa (who makes my favorite new turban!). Phi Clothing created gorgeous evening options, C’era Una Volta had a beautiful soft Scandinavian like aesthetic, Donsje Amsterdam’s collection had a forest animal feel, while Infantium Victoria uses vegan materials. Collectively the brands featured allowed for a wondeful, diverse show and it was a great way to close out the weekend!
I have to say what we experienced at the MonnaLisa fashion show held at the Station Leopolda was an entire performance of circus acts, musical performances, and high end fashion. Certainly fun for kids as well as adults. I’ve never in all my years have seen a show this entertaining and just jaw dropping, with one surprise after the next!
Discovering the micro brands was a real treat. Pitti Bimbo believes at all brands should have the chance to grow, and I love that they have a dedicated section for just that. Buyers can browse these new and upcoming designers in their own section, before they potentially become the next household name. Total brilliant!
Watch The Video:
MC2 Saint Barth
Mias Italy headbands
I was beyond impressed by the extraordinary platform of Pitti Bimbo for presenting the new lifestyle trends for kids, all in a complete overview of children’s fashions. I came home so inspired, and honestly we are already planning our trip back! I think I really miss the fashion industry!
See our favorites from the city of Florence here.