This week i went to the Bubble Trade show in London, it’s held twice a year and i’d been meaning to go for years but to be honest i am quite a home bod so it takes something pretty special to get me to leave Bristol ! Yeah it sounds quite sad but without sounding pretentious if i have 1 day off a week i generally pay for it the rest of the week (i’m taking work wise here) and whilst i am not the most organised person in the world i do kinda have my work routine set down .
What made me really wanna go was that i met my on-line buddy Musetta from MUS4kids, she got in contact and said about meeting up in Bristol and going to to London together (she is from Holland) so it was like hell yeah.
By the Way Musetta makes a really nice clothing range for kids and babies you should check her site out.
Like i mentioned before i had been coveting the Bubble trade show for some time, a lot of the people whom i follow on twitter have been and always post great reviews and pictures and it seemed really cool. Lots of indie brands there (and the theme of the show is babies & kids clothing and accessories ) so it would be great to meet like minded people who love their brand and are trying to spread to word.
I didn’t really have much expectations of what it was going to be like,i was quite laid back about the event and dressed in my scruffy converse and defo had dressed for comfort (as always, i mean in my mind it’s acceptable to wear a T-Shirt anywhere!) . So when i got there and the first person i saw had an uber expensive mulberry bag resting quite uncomfortably on her mid inner forearm, sky scrapper platform stilettos and a silky looking mostly see through top on i was like ohhh ok………
I think has a lot to do with the London affect though, i always find that in London people dress differently from other parts of the country (i don’t mean this is a bad way) i find it really interesting.
Now obviously that was one person from many and not everyone was like that, but with all shows where people collide you get people who seem to look at people with the attitude of “look at me, i’m important you know” ie to quote Prince ” seems they were busy doing something close to nothin” . I find all this quite funny, as my mum would say “all fur coat and no knickers”. I’m sure they were looking at me thinking jeepers someone really needs to enforce a dress code here, a street woman has just wandered in ! Or maybe it could have been envy of the fact my shoes weren’t cutting off my blood circulation to my toes but hey live & let live dudes.
Anyways to get back to the trade show itself , it’s a really kinda compact and cute show; Absolutely great for meeting new kids wears brands and finding their story behind their brand. It’s SO cool to meet the people who make their brand happen and it makes you want to get behind them and really “get” what they are all about. Behind any brand there is a real motivation as to why they started and the majority is to make something awesome for the consumer.
Scandinavian brands feature quite heavily in the trade show, and for good reason because their clothes are fantastic. Really well made from lush fabric, pieces that are really original and you know you’ll be keeping them in your bottom drawer way long after your kids have out grown them because they hold such precious memories of when your kids wore them. I was looking at the Smafolk range for next year and basically had to massage my cheeks because i was smiling so much. It was awesome; it makes me wonder why Nordic brands are so awesome compared to some british ones (i’m thinking about the big chain retailers here) i mean british brands must be able to make things like this ? I’m guessing maybe with the big chains it comes down to profit and loss sheets rather than “yeah lets go for the thicker cotton because that is better” .
Although that being said i did meet an awesome company from Norfolk which make their own baby and toddler clothes , and the quality was SO good. I really liked Immink , Ben was a really nice chap and you can see that he and his wife (i’m so sorry i’ve forgotten her name but she was Very nice too ) are really into what they do, and they do it very well. Their baby clothes we so soft it was a major WOW moment.
This is Immink’s stand from Bubble.
I have to admit there were some other brands that were just ewwww. To be fair they were from outside the UK so maybe i don’t fit their target audience or maybe i am just weird and don’t get them; But to me they looked like things i could just pick up in a big supermarket here – nothing remarkable, for sure not something i would want to spend £20 for a baby grow.
There were the brands that like Jessie J think they are better than what they are (sorry to all those Jessie J fans ! ) and i just don’t buy into all that pretentious rubbish, i don’t REALLY care if someone from a pop band has dressed their kids in your clothes i care more about my kids and if they will be comfy, will it last, bringing something original etc etc.
There are some brands that have strong principles and even if they aren’t necessarily my principles i have to give them the respect they deserve as they are staying true to themselves, and with a lot of passion .
I admit i am much more likely to buy from someone i like, and i prefer the more down to earth approach ; In business there is so much hot air and the creation of “aren’t we doing well ” when really it’s “ahhh no ones buying our stuff, i really thought neon leg warmers would be in this season” , go with your own instincts and don’t let anyone tell you whats in or out. I hate the saying “it’s so on trend” …….. And i heard that a lot during this show with some brands. I’ve dressed my youngest daughter in clothes that my eldest daughter had worn 4 years previously so “being on trend” is not a big concern for me !
Also another bug bear for me is having to buy seasons ahead (not that i do ! ) i really think things have to change in the fashion world, our weather here in the Uk is pants; look at it now, it’s June and it’s raining and windy. Our summers just don’t seem to be happening as they use to, last year was pants too. So what you find is now stores are doing their summer sales with stock they’ve had since March (ie summer stock) which you don’t really want to buy because you can’t wear because it’s too cold ; then in late August September when we may actually have some hot weather in the stores are the Autumn winter ranges which you don’t want to buy a jumper because it’s freakin boiling. Weird thats what i say ! I know a lot of this is down to the manufacture of the clothes so it’s maybe not so simple but hey !
Sorry rant over !
Overall Bubble trade show was a good experience, great to see some really funky brands doing their own thing, nice to meet the people behind the brands, get an overview on how other countries roll with kids wear and get to meet other store owners and think wow you are nothing like i thought.
It would be cool to have maybe maternity wear and nursing wear thrown into the mix as there used to be a trade show for this called Premier Kinds which was held in the NEC which hasn’t been held for many years which is a shame. Although one of my friends is of the belief trade shows themselves are on their way out due to the fact they are SO expensive to exhibit at (i’m not sure if i agree with her here but they are hideously expensive).
In all what i took away from this is if you are prepared to look around there are some great indie kids brands making some cracking clothes that are both original and well made. Shame more of these can’t into the main stream stores to make them easier to buy but then i guess it would take away from the originality of them.