Portugal Fashion in Italy for the very first time at Altaroma
Portugal Fashion in Italy for the very first time at Altaroma

Portugal Fashion, at the invitation of Altaroma, a prestigious Italian fashion event, flew to the transalpine capital with designers Daniela Barros, Susana Bettencourt and Alexandra Oliveira’s Pé de Chumbo label. Part of the event calendar for the first time, Portugal Fashion added a new city to its international itinerary, which this year has included London, Paris and Milan. The collective fashion show was on 9 July, at Ex Dogana, room 3. The importance of this market to the European textile industry, as well as the scouting that the Altaroma team does, bringing together labels and designers of different nationalities in a single event, were the main reasons for Portugal Fashion’s Roman adventure.

Was at the Altaroma fashion hub that the Portuguese participation took shape. In the July event, Daniela Barros, Susana Bettencourt and the Pé de Chumbo label presented their collections for next autumn-winter, as part of the main strategic axis of the event: revealing new talents of "made in Italy” fashion. But that’s not all. In addition to revealing young Italian designers who stand out for their avant-garde collections and were discovered through the "Who Is On Next?” competition, the fashion hub also seeks to reveal new designers who have been blazing a promising trail in other European countries, preferably giving more emphasis to those who have already begun their internationalisation processes. To this end, Altaroma and Vogue Italia work together to carry out a major scouting initiative. This was how Portugal Fashion’s invitation to participate in this event came about. 

It should also be noted that the Altaroma triad also includes two other strategic vectors: Atelier (fashion shows by traditional haute couture houses, such as Valentino and Fendi) and In Town (complementary events taking place on the days of the initiative and bringing creative value to Rome, such as photo exhibitions and small showrooms).

Portuguese autumn-winter presented in the Roman summer

The weather is hot, but there was a substantial drop in temperature at the collective fashion show in Rome presented by designers Daniela Barros and Susana Bettencourt and the Pé de Chumbo label. From Daniela Barros’ "strong, strict and austere woman”, in the form of oversized constructions and masculine details that "appeal to some androgynous characteristics”, to the childlike inspiration of Susana Bettencourt, which is seen in garments that ally the designer’s recognised knitwear technique with the "application of technology”, and finishing with the "mixture of thick strands of wool and the delicacy of fine, transparent lace” by designer Alexandra Oliveira, who set up the Pé de Chumbo label. It is a fact that there were no shortage of different proposals for the next cold season at Ex Dogana.

At the beginning of the year, Daniela Barros and Susana Bettencourt were at London Fashion Week as part of Portugal Fashion’s international calendar.  There, they took part in the official programme of fashion performances in showroom format, which was also a new focus for the project, at what is considered one of the most competitive fashion weeks in the world. The Pé de Chumbo label made its début in the March Portugal Fashion, which made Altaroma interested in seeing a new presentation, thus marking its début on the project’s international itinerary.

Increasing internationalisation

Bringing major visibility in specialised press, with buyers and many other driving forces in the sector, the international fashion weeks are perfect opportunities for Portugal Fashion to launch national designers beyond our borders, as well as for projecting the entire national fashion industry. Now, there’s another stop: Rome.

"After the new season was underway, beginning with the project’s first participation in Paris Men’s Fashion Week, the process of consolidating Portugal Fashion’s calendar continues. This time, we’re on our way to Italy, more precisely Altaroma. We are very proud of this début and participation, because of all the history, experience and influence associated with the event. Since 2002, it has been introducing emerging talent on the Italian fashion scene, as well as making room for others from all over Europe. This was a unique opportunity for designers Daniela Barros, Susana Bettencourt and the Pé de Chumbo label to present themselves at one of the most prestigious fashion events in a country recognised as one of the world’s main fashion centres. In addition, we have established an agreeable parallelism with Altaroma, as it is equally important to us to help reveal new designers, through Portugal Fashion’s Bloom”, said João Rafael Koehler, President of ANJE – National Association of Young Entrepreneurs, the entity that promotes Portugal Fashion.

It should also be noted that Altaroma is organised by a consortium that includes the Rome Chamber of Commerce, Risorse per Roma, the Lazio Region and Roma Capitale.

Portugal Fashion 2015-2017 – a project under the auspices of ANJE – National Association of Young Entrepreneurs, in partnership with ATP – Textile and Apparel Association of Portugal – is funded by Portugal 2020, under Compete 2020 – Operational Programme for Competitiveness and Internationalisation, with European Union funds of European Regional Development Fund.

Photo credits: Altaroma / Ugo Camera