2017 GBSB Global BIT of Fashion Conference Special Guest Speakers

The countdown to GBSB Global’s 3rd Annual BIT of Fashion Conference is here. A two-day event, April 25th & 26th will showcase an esteemed panel of speakers from across the globe that highlight various sectors of the fashion and luxury industry.

The BIT of Fashion is a student run conference. It is a unique project that Master of Fashion and Luxury Business Management students participate in, that helps build their competencies in the real world. In the past, two or three students took the lead of the event and orchestrated the conference from the beginning to end, organizing all the details from inviting speakers to participate to arranging the marketing and catering vendors.

This year, the conference has been incorporated into the curriculum and has become a class project. The class has been split up in four main groups. These groups were responsible for various responsibilities, and are defined by arranging the speakers, hospitality, marketing, and the budget. Of course, all the groups have to work independently to accomplish their tasks, but they are together working toward a common goal.

The Master in Fashion and Luxury Business Management students worked hard to find guest speakers from different fields in the fashion industry; these fields include, innovation, fashion, design, art, trends, blogging, business, and brand management. The idea this year was to make the conference bigger than ever, not only presenting a conference with speakers talking about their field of influence, but students also want to put an emphasis on networking. In the garden at GBSB Global, there will be a pop-up store with new, local designers who will show their accessories, jewelry, and other ornate pieces. Students will have serve drinks and hors d’ouerves for guests as they mix and mingle between talks.

One of the big highlights students are excited about, is welcoming two young artists from Germany, Niko and Theo Nikolaidis. They will be offering a live painting demonstration on clothes throughout the entire conference.

Matthew Zorpas, founder of The Gentleman Blogger from London will be in attendance, and is the BIT of Fashion’s VIP speaker.

The primary purpose of the conference is to create a leading stage for educating students and professionals on innovation and trends within business and fashion today. By the sharing of experiences and knowledge, GBSB Global and its students believe the conference will benefit everyone involved and will set a foundation for new ideas and inspiration. The aim is to create an open platform for creativity that can serve as a bridge between industry experts, students, and members of the community interested in fashion and innovation.

An array of honored guest speakers from here in Barcelona and abroad will be convening at this conference. Here is a glimpse at the names that will be presenting:

Mathew Zorpas, Blogger and Founder of the UK #1 Menswear Fashion Blog, The Gentleman Blogger, from London

Matthew graduated with a BA in Public Relations from London College of Communications and an MSc in Global Media and Communication from London School of Economics. After graduation, he went onto found The Gentleman Blogger in July 2012 and has collaborated with very respected brands such as Cartier, Chopard, Gucci, IWC, Westfield London, Dolce and Gabbana, Cadillac, MINI Clubman, and Coach.

He was awarded "Best Dressed Man" in Britain by Esquire Magazine the UK in 2010, and GQ Taiwan named him one of top best dressed men in the world for 2013.

British GQ crowned him "One of the Top Ten Best Dressed Men on Instagram" and was appointed a judge for the British GQ Grooming Awards 2017.

Mr. Zorpas also teaches courses on luxury management and digital marketing at respected universities in the UK such as Istituto Marangoni, and contributes to the London College of Fashion, Regents College, Winchester School of Arts, and PUC-Rio in Brazil.

Xavier Gramona, Vice-president of Cava Gramona
Xavier Gramona, Vice-president of Cava Gramona

Xavier Gramona, with his cousin Jaume, represent the fifth generation of a family dedicated to producing quality wines for over 130 years. Together they aspire to show the world the region’s excellent, top-quality cava, breaking the stereotypes and admiring the virtues of the Xarel.lo grape variety.

As a tribute to their ancestors, who founded the bodega in Sant Sadurní d'Anoia in 1881, the Gramonas pioneered the making and marketing of a long-lived cuvee, Celler Batlle, a bottle with eight years of ageing and have now gone one step further with the Enoteca range released last Christmas. This new release raises the length of bottle ageing to twelve years.

Presently, Gramona vineyards products are 100% ecological. From the 150 hectares that the family owns, 90 hectares are devoted exclusively to the cultivation of grapes for the production of cava. They have made a small production of wines similar to the great French Cru, looking for those lands more suitable for each variety of grape (xarel·lo, macabaeo and parellada).

They have also created a system that they call "Alliances of the Earth" by which all the employees who work for them enjoy a vineyard contract for life, possibly something especially unique in the world of wine. Through these contracts, employees are given a voice and vote in the future of the vineyard they control.

Llorenç Fluxà, CEO and Founder of Med winds
Llorenç Fluxà, CEO and Founder of Med winds

Med winds is a Mediterranean-inspired brand from Barcelona. Created by Llorenç Fluxà, in 2011 in Raval, one of the popular neighborhoods in Barcelona, Med winds pays homage to its origins, discovering a pure and natural way of being and living.

Mr. Fluxà also manages Cartujano, the luxury division of the Mallorcan group Camper. Lorenzo Fluxá, Llorenç’s father, founded Camper in Barcelona in 1975 and has been a family-operated business ever since. Llorenç belongs to the fourth generation of one of the most international family businesses in Spain.

Natalie Capell, Designer and Owner of Natalie Capell Fashion Atelier
Natalie Capell, Designer and Owner of Natalie Capell Fashion Atelier

"Every dress hides a story," explained Natalie Capell, this is because none of her pieces are the same, and they all have special details that belong to other eras of time. What stands out are the vintage inspired dresses that are completely handmade. Natalie Capell develops these exclusive pieces that look like a museum collection, handmade with fabrics and lace from the 1920’s. These special accents give each piece a touch of romance and sensuality. Ms. Capell is known for designing costumes primarily for dance and theater works, but also offers an array of wedding dresses in her studio. Some of the best examples of her work are her tulle dresses, dyed by hand in natural colors and decorated with antique tips.

In the last edition of Barcelona Bridal Week, Natalie Capell debuted for the first time on the bridal runway. Natalie Capell's collection started with party designs, almost all in black with original embroideries, fine threads and necklines embroidered motifs of art-deco inspiration on tulles and transparencies. Also, included in her runway debut, she presented her wedding dresses in off-white tones, with very flowing silhouettes.

Cristina Bifano, Trend Researcher, Educator, Fashion Historian, and Designer, from the United States living in Barcelona
Cristina Bifano, Trend Researcher, Educator and Designer, from the United States living in Barcelona

Trend researcher, educator, textile designer and fashion historian with a passion for combining all interests into one. Cristina Bifano calls upon an extensive network of brilliant minds hailing from the far corners of the globe to participate in courses she coordinates on investigating trends for IED Barcelona. Focusing on investigating trends, fashion, and textiles, Cristina Bifano also lectures at Elisava, BAU, and GBSB Global.

Alongside teaching she conducts consumer trends and design research for innovation and inspiration reports for select clients. Her recent projects and collaborations include: trends training for Decotec, D-Think toolkit for Venture Hub, American culture for The Book of Everyone, Belonging+Exchange for the Hotel Brummel, New York influencers for GNT Group.

Professor Bifano also gives bespoke tours of Barcelona for designers and collectors with Antiques&Boutiques.

She is the proud editor of Roadtrip to Innovation and Digital Natives/Get Ready!, both by Delia Dumitrescu, and has collaborated on articles for La Vanguardia, TV3, Selvedge Magazine and El Pais/S Moda.

Dafne Patruno, Founder of Blog, BCN Cool Hunt
Dafne Patruno, Founder of Blog, BCN Cool Hunt

At 31 years old, Dafne Patruno is an Italian living in Barcelona. She moved to Barcelona for work 6 years ago and decided it was a good fit and stayed. Now she is working for herself after founding the blog "BCN Cool Hunter." In addition to this, she is a Blog Manager of the Italian fashion page Modalizer.com

The blog, "BCN Cool Hunter" talks about fashion, trends, and lifestyle in Barcelona. It also focuses on shops, restaurants, exhibitions, and other events in and around the city.

Pablo Zea, Director of Advertising & EMEAA Brand Communications Manager at NIKE Iberia
Pablo Zea, Director of Advertising & EMEAA Brand Communications Manager at NIKE Iberia

Pablo Zea has a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration and a Master's in Business Management from ESADE. He has worked for the Publicis, BBDO Barcelona, BBDO Paris, and Wieden & Kennedy agencies to become the Director of Advertising for Nike Iberia and EMEA Brand Communications Manager. During that period, Mr. Zea supervised and approved more than 40 Nike marketing communication campaigns, some of which won various creative and advertising awards. It was at the beginning of 2007 when he accepted the title General Director of Villarrosàs, and in 2009, he collaborated with Fernando Codina on the SantaMarta project. He has worked with well-known clients such as Nike, Converse, Pepsi, Honda Automobiles, Dewards, Puig and Tous.

Niko & Theo Nikolaidis, Founders of the fashion label Charles Chapeau, from Germany

Two young brothers from Hannover, Germany are talented artists and painters. They have displayed and sold their works both in Germany and the United States. They founded their own fashion label called Charles Chapeau, where they print their paintings on a variety of textiles. Pieces made by these brothers are limited edition.

Mark your calendars! Don’t miss this extraordinary experience meeting with these fascinating names in the fashion and luxury business at GBSB Global April 25th & 26th 2017!

Written by Emily Dawn Szajda, GBSB Content Manager

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