With its latest summer edition, Seek has proven its status as one of the significant seasonal meeting points in the European casual and upper streetwear landscape. An appealing brand mix from newcomers to industry veterans and not least an impressive roster of side events, organized in cooperation with such hot names as Dutch streetwear institution Patta or Barcelona sneaker store 24 Kilates had major players of the segment gather at Arena Berlin. After all, business – and especially relations - are not only made between the wooden trade show booth, but also off-side.
Whilst for small labels like Neige from Warsaw, who showed a rave-infused line of streetwear or female biker denim label Burd’s Ldn, Seek helps to introduce their collections to a wider audience and new markets, more commercial names like Lee, Levi’s, K-Swiss or Palladium use the show to present a selected, more niche part of their collection to reach new independent boutique stores. “In times where many stores make up to 70-75% of their sales with the two big brands in this field, we use the show to show retailers a targeted selection and what our brand stands for. The sneaker market got really tough for smaller brands”, said Uwe Schäfer, country sales manager Germany & Austria at K-Swiss.
Sneakers generally played a part in the Seek hallways with such names as Boxfresh, Clae, Ekn Footwear, Gram, Gola Classics, Kangaroos, Puma Select, Springcourt or Reebok Classic and an enlarged version of last season’s Sneaker Spot, bridging the on- an offline experience of a sneaker trade event, which was hosted in cooperation with Ebay and Turnschuh.tv in between the Seek and Bright halls.
The booths around the café area as well as the Seek Market area near the bar offered inspiration in terms of accessories and side-products such as the beautiful jewelry by San Francisco/Nairobi-based brand Soko, which produces its minimalistic goods in Kenya from ethically sourced materials.
Best sportswear: Fila. The brand finally managed to get the cool retro style of their UK line also to Central Europe via Snipes owned Urban Styles agency.
THE embellishment: Summery stitching, ranging from elaborate beach settings to small palmtrees, melons or pineapples.
Denim trend: Open Seams – no longer just on the leg ends, but also on tops, jackets etc.
Most on-trend collection: Soulland. As always, the Copenhagen menswear line is full of original ideas – from cow-patterned leather shirts to pajamas with bold flower prints.
Best outdoor: Polar, easily blending outdoor essentials into hip streetwear pieces.
Coolest sandals: Kavat. The Gothenburg-based, family-run shoe company makes children’s shoes since 1945. But also their sandals for grown-ups are made from certified eco leather.
For more information on trade shows check out DFV Group’s expocheck.com.