Designer to know: Barbara Bui

Editorial • 04/10/17

Barbara Bui - A Parisian staple...

1987 Paris Fashion week saw Barbara Bui debut her first collection and the magic still continues. Her identity is 'Rock chic' resulting in prevalent shades, forms and and finishes of the colour black. Bui is the apex of feminine meeting tom boy. From straight sexy and edgy akin to lead designer Anthony Vaccarello (Saint Laurent) to pure delicate romance.

"I DESIGN FOR A MODERN WOMAN WHO TAKES CHARGE OF HER FEMININITY AND ALL THE ASPECTS OF HER LIFE – WHETHER SHE’S A WORKING WOMAN, A MOTHER, A LOVER, A WIFE. WHAT SHE FINDS IN MY COLLECTIONS IS A STRONG STYLE FOR A WOMAN OF CHARACTER, A FREE SPIRIT"

It all started in her boutique named Kabuki. Bui was stocking other ready to wear brands alongside her own designs. She started to carve out signature pieces within the collections. Ranging from leather trousers, python bags, embroidered jackets and boots.

A common theme is the role of the snake symbol across her designs. Bui uses the reptile with its looping, contorting body to represent the dangers of mixing temptation, desire and sensuality. And whilst there is a dominant use of black be sure to know that neutral hues of beige and nude are used. Crucially as if the mad panic of lack of colour enters Bui's head we are infrequently shown an explosive block of colour in a form close to Neon as a head to toe look.

Designing "FOR A WOMAN WITH STRONG CHARACTER, BUT ALSO A LOT OF EMOTION AND SENSITIVITY" You can see why Barbara Bui is a winning staple designer from France and lasted the test of time, even taking the company public and global in the process.

Images are from SS18 collection. View the latest from Barbara Bui here

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