Berlin Fashion Week
Though you see some striking looks on its streets, Berlin’s reputation as a fashion-forward city wasn’t really matched by a major industry presence until recently. As the city’s ever-growing Fashion Week proves, this is changing rapidly, and Berlin now hosts one of the largest and edgiest designer showcases in Europe. This summer’s event runs from 2 to 9 July and, while you’ll need insider connections to get into the more industry-oriented catwalk shows, there are public events running every day. Top among these has to be the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week showcase held in front of the Brandenburg Gate from 2 to 5 July. The Bread & Butter street fashion trade fair held at the old Tempelhof airport is also a highlight.
Berlin Fashion Film Festival
This being arty Berlin, the city’s Fashion Week wouldn’t be complete without a cultural programme running alongside from 2 to 4 July. Reflecting on fashion and its place in the world, the festival veers between the glitzy, the intellectual and the practical, and includes masterclass contributions from photographers and make-up artists. If some of that sounds too highbrow for your tastes, don’t worry – the festival ends on a note of pure hedonism with a big party at Badeschiff, a riverside nightclub lounge that has its own swimming pool floating in the river Spree.
Kino Arsenal 1, Potsdamer Strasse 2, 10785 Berlin
The most famous fashion designer Germany has ever produced finally gets his own Berlin outpost early this month. Best known for his longstanding role as head designer and creative director at Chanel, Lagerfeld also has his own line, which will be displayed in a sleek concept store covering 135 square metres on one of Berlin’s hippest shopping streets. Keeping things up to date, the boutique will feature photo booths for customers to take and share snaps of themselves and iPad Minis that let the curious browse the whole collection online.
Karl Lagerfeld, Neue Schönhauser Strasse 8, 10178 Berlin
Open Air Gallery
Twice every summer (the second time on 7 July), Berlin’s iconic double-decker Oberbaum bridge shuts to traffic and transforms into an open-air art gallery showcasing works from over 100 painters and sculptors. Mixing established artists with unknowns, this event is probably the most accessible, unstuffy event in the city’s art calendar, and turns into a kind of street party, the riverside cafés nearby spilling over with art buffs, strollers and their children.
Oberbaumbrücke, Warschauer Strasse 51, 10243 Berlin