The Hungarian Fashion & Design Agency (HFDA) organised the Budapest Central European Fashion Week (BCEFW) for the thirteenth time, between the 22nd and the 28th of January. 29 brands, including ten regional designers, unveiled their newest collections at the region’s main fashion event. There was a greater interest in the event than ever, the weekend fashion shows attracted nearly 3000 visitors to the Museum of Fine Arts. Almost a thousand people visited the Fashion Hub’s free programs targeting Generation Z, for which there were multiple oversubscriptions during pre-registration. In the history of BCEFW, one of the highest numbers, a total of 25 side events enriched the program of Fashion Week, which awaited fashion enthusiasts citywide from Monday to Sunday.
Between the 22nd and the 28th of January, exhibitions, roundtable discussions, open showrooms, special purchasing opportunities, musical programs and fashion shows awaited visitors interested in fashion in Budapest. At the central event of the fashion week, starting with side events, 29 brands unveiled their newest collections, including Polish, Slovakian, Serbian, Austrian and Ukrainian designers. The participation of designers from neighbouring countries in the event aligns with the goal of making Budapest a long-term regional hub in the fashion industry. Three acknowledged domestic brands joined the event with self-organised programs. Every detail of the events, which were entirely organised by the brands and held at an external venue, perfectly aligned with the unique character and style of each brand.
During BCEFW, I had the chance to talk to professionals, domestic and international journalists, and buyers visiting the event. All of them highlighted the professionalism of the event, and they found the designers’ collections remarkable and suitable for international markets. With no exception, they regard the BCEFW as the region’s highest-standard fashion event. It is important feedback for us that many guests wore a domestic brand’s garment to our events, demonstrating that an ever-widening circle is becoming interested in Hungarian designers, including members of the young generation whom we have once again engaged successfully. There was an oversubscription to the Fashion Hub during pre-registration, and nearly 1000 people visited the weekend programs on-site. Each season, BCEFW represents a determining event contributing to the tourist appeal of the country by covering the whole of Budapest, with important landmarks regarding the national brand image; this time, the area of the Museum of Fine Arts, Heroes’ Square, and Andrássy Avenue – highlighted BCEFW’s regional role Zsófia Jakab, the HFDA’s CEO.
International experts could get to know Budapest’s cultural offering through a hospitality tour again. As part of the professional audience, representatives of the Milan-based Spazio 38 showroom and the Polish Modivo, the buyer of the Swiss Hay Hay concept store, the owner of the Passion Alley boutique in Athene, and the founders of the White Milano trade show viewed the fashion shows and were curious to see Hungarian brands. Fashion editors from Vogue Polska, Vogue Czechoslovakia, ELLE Serbia, 10Magazine and The Impression all visited Budapest during the BCEFW. Those familiar with the world of fashion could spot Nina Suess, influencer, and Patrick Domingo, fashion and lifestyle photographer, among the audience.
In the AW2425 season, there was once again a particular emphasis on new talents and reaching out to the younger audience. Emerging designers at the beginning of their careers debuted in the full-house New Generation collective fashion show in the Museum of Fine Arts. The Fashion Hub offered exciting programs for the Generation Z audience in the building of Hungarian Art & Business, which were several times oversubscribed during pre-registration. Many were interested in career opportunities in the world of fashion, and discussions on the topic were popular. Workshop participants could take home exciting creations of their own making and could delve into the topics of sustainability and technology.
Not only on-site was there a great interest in BCEFW programs. Nearly 20 thousand people watched the live broadcasts of fashion shows in high quality on Facebook, and the most popular TikTok video had over 150 thousand views the day after the event.
Photocredit: HFDA / The Sparkle Conten