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In Rennes there is a spontaneous, creative, fresh and innovative movement. Patterns are drawn, shaped, sewn, stitched and embroidered to make fashion items.
While the sailor is to Brittany what salted butter is to a slice of bread: another regional flagship and pride of Rennes, local fashion is not only the indigo blue striped knit of sailors. It is now one of the most esteemed and sought after movements in Europe.
Rennes is proud to be host to one of the five Esmod schools (Higher School of Arts and Fashion) in France. The city also boasts one of the best French Schools of Fine Arts, from which a number of local designers have graduated. Moreover, there are many self-taught designers in the area. Among the most promising and talented, are: Al-Blimsey, Les Jolis Mômes, la mode ethnique Fata Mangrova, la griffe Sauciflar et Calendos by Fanny Mouchel, les foulards en soie Rue du Dragon by Victoria Duval, the Louk & Cyhä collections, as well as Joséphine Bono and Joséphine Gravis.
Kahina Drider, 27, is a young woman of amazing energy and inventiveness. Her experience in top-level sport - she was one of the top 8 French kayakers - undoubtedly developed her tenacity and audacity.
Bubbling with ideas, she has particularly imagined fashion-based events: "I lived for a time in Paris where I discovered that there were private sales every weekend. We did not have that in Rennes!" she says. Back in the Brittany capital, she worked to bring local designers together. The Apéro des Créateur (Creators Aperitif) was born. Since then, twice a year, Kahina Drider creates the city fashion event (brunch Creators - Brunch des Créateurs) and Pop Up Winter - Pop Up d’hiver) where one can meet all Rennes.
Any good fashionista knows: no outfit is perfect without the required accessory! Rennes is full creators of jewellery, bags and other fashion items. There are ethnic purses of Alice Watier and the bags by Anne-Laure Gardan, those of the Suky house of Amandine Simon and Mina Lou as well as many more.
In jewellery, the choice is also abundant and sometimes difficult however, we must mention a few names: Apachita bracelets by Blandine Duverger, Noë hats and accessories by Noëmie Bourigault, the colourful resin and silicone jewellery by Amandine Bernard, those by Yum Yum, Loulataï, Paris-Rennes and more.
In 2012, the first Apéro des Créateurs was a veritable success. Building on this success, in 2014 Kahina Drider imagined the Brunch des Créateurs: fifty professionals participate, and rejoice as nearly 2500 people attended the event. For the 2015 event, the organiser planned two days of festivities, on the weekend of Pentecost and invited some 70 artists.
This attracted almost 4500 visitors! In May 2016, the Brunch will be a highly anticipated spring event. Never short of ideas, Kahina Drider also created a December fashion event: Pop Up Winter. "For three weeks, all Rennes can come and discover all kinds of pretty things in a real pop-up store", she says. There are two main events punctuated by workshops, snacks for children, dressing room sales, tea and knitting and more.
Young fashion designers meet every springtime in Dinard (and now in Dinan) for the International Festival of Young Designers. This highly anticipated event reveals the designers of tomorrow.
Among the latest winners, the creators of the brand XY XX Cécile Dallancon and Kyuho Lee; the Breton Aela Lehmann and her partner Juliette Zakowetz, founder of éponyme; Laétitia Comettini behind the brand L; For the 22nd edition, April 15, 16 and 17, 2016, the festival has moved to Dinan, 50 kilometres from Rennes.
At almost every street corner, there are pretty little places to discover in which one can meet and rub shoulders with the world of Rennes and regional designers. Fashion, children's clothes and baby clothes, jewellery, bags and accessories, decorations and other objects; there are so many concept stores in Rennes such as Mint, Chouette, La Supérette, Tipi and La P’tite Fabrique du 13 to name but a few.