Brand Talk: Meet Bobo Choses creative director Adriana Esperalba.
At the spanish brand Bobo Choses the love of having fun is fundamental. And it surley reflects in the garments. We caught up with founder Adriana Esperalba to chat about the soul of the brand, future collections and sustainability.
HELLO ADRIANA, SO NICE TO CHAT WITH YOU, HOW ARE YOU?
– Hello team! All good, thanks!
IF YOU COULD SUM UP BOBO CHOSES MOOD AND STYLE IN A FEW WORDS?
– Well, we’re basically kids stuck inside adults acting seriously funny and caring for the world and everything that is part of it. At Bobo Choses, we love to have fun! :-)
WHERE DOES YOUR LOVE FOR KIDS CLOTHES COME FROM, WHAT INSPIRES YOU?
– In 2008 and with the arrival of our children, my former associate and I realized that we couldn’t find nice clothing for them. We quickly detected that there was a gap in the children’s fashion market. I remember that the brands we admired were Nordic, and there was no brand in Barcelona or shops to find that kind of design by then. Everything was much more classic, no-fun, with a huge difference between boy and girl’s clothes. So we decided to create a mini-collection of T-shirts, with no idea of how we would sell them. And here we are, a few years later, explaining stories through clothing. I think that was the key factor that differentiated us from other brands. We want to become their favorite t-shirt or print.
As for inspiration, you can find it in a book, a photograph, a song, a movie ... Our collections always have a look at our childhood, sometimes it is as if we resisted getting older. I like to observe how people dress in the street, travel, and discover new things.
I am fascinated by the rationalist architecture, the Bauhaus school, Le Corbusier, Josep Lluis Sert, and Eames, Jean Prouvé, Ettore Sottsass, Miguel Milá. There are also many artists that I like, Joan Miró, Sonia Delaunay, Joan Brossa, David Hockney, Calder, Jean Arp. But even designers and illustrators like Eric Carl, Bruno Munari, Enzo Mari... In the world of fashion, Coco Chanel, Rei Kawakubo, and Josep Font.
WHO IS YOUR PRIME CUSTOMER YOU WOULD SAY?
– I think Bobo goes beyond children’s clothing. As a company, we have values and a philosophy that people respect and identify with. We try to connect with the little ones through content, such as illustrated stories, both digital and offline activities… that awaken their creativity. We care about our environment: our customers, our suppliers, and our planet. We want to think that what we do has a reason for being and is very authentic.
WHAT IS THE STORY BEHIND THE NAME ”BOBO CHOSES”?
– When we started, we liked the word ”Bobo” from the French expression, ”bourgeois bohème”, even though the term can sometimes be seen as derogatory; it represents a kind of society with a passion for culture, against frivolous consumerism, but with a relatively comfortable life that allows that attitude. The truth is, it’s just an easy word for a child to say. It can also mean naive in Spanish, and in comedy plays, it’s the funny character. ’Choses’ because we want to come up with more things, and not just clothing. We are drawn to everything in children’s worlds.
HOW DO YOU DEFINE THE SPIRIT OF THE NEW COLLECTION?
– Our Spring-Summer 2021 collection, For President, is the most convincing party platform in political history. When we were working on the concept behind the collection, we thought: Adults are having a hard time making the world a better place to live in, so… What would children do if they were President? What would a world run by children be like? And we kind of created this incredible, creative, imaginative, and fun world, with chocolate flowers and homes, no jealousy, animals would speak, maths would be easier, it would be summer all of the time, spiders and lions as pets...
WHAT ACTIONS ARE YOU TAKING TO BE MORE SUSTAINABLE?
– We strive to replace conventional materials with more sustainable ones that have a lower impact on both nature and human health.
We use GOTS-certified organic cotton as the primary fiber in our collections. We are increasingly incorporating more sustainable fibers such as linen, cupro, recycled polyester, and LENZING™ Lyocell. There is so much we can share regarding this but for instance he cotton yarn is organic GOTS certified and swimwear is made of recycled technical fabrics. Our garments are made locally. 98% of our SS21 collection was produced between Spain and Portugal, 80% of which has been produced no more than 12 miles away from our headquarters. We love to support our local manufacturers and to learn from their know-how.
We analyze our garments at one of Europe’s leading research centers called AITEX to certify that they are healthy garments. All of our products are free of nickel and chromium.
IS IT POSSIBLE TO INFLUENCE THE CUSTOMER TO BUY PERHAPS LESS BUT MORE SUSTAINABLE, TO SEE THE VALUE IN BUYING QUALITY? WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON THIS?
– As consumers, we have the power to leave a better world for our children. From our perspective, environmental protection is no longer an option but rather the key to our future, and sharing this commitment with our children becomes an obligation. We believe in the capacity that kids have to understand, act, and transform, even more than adults. The protection of the environment is a responsibility, but we can protect it while we have fun.
Buying less, but better, taking good care of the clothes, giving them to friends or family, or donating them to NGOs and Foundations, are some easy and good ideas to promote the change and smile to earth’s face.
WHAT IS YOUR VISION ABOUT THE FUTURE FOR YOUR BRAND? WHAT’S NEXT?
– For us it’s really important to continue telling stories and transmitting the values of creativity, humility, and respect for the people and the environment through our garments. As you may know, for the last two years, we’ve been working on a special project, The Iconic Collection, to expand the lifecycle of our overstock materials with the Waste Agency of Catalonia, TecnoCampus Mataró, Inèdit Innova, and Hallotex-The Loop.
TELL US MORE ABOUT THE INITIATIVE.
– We have managed to turn manufactured clothes and used cotton into a pulp to convert into new fibers for yarn and fabrics. We’d love to see that new step towards sustainability grow. For the next near months we will work hard to expand the concept behind The Iconic Collection so that it can arrive everywhere.
And we always love to make future plans as a family, as a team. In that way, keep improving and growing, connect with more people and other brands with whom we share values and passions. The truth is that we love to dream; there are always lots of ideas and new challenges in our heads to follow.
DO YOU HAVE A FAVOURITE STYLE FROM PAST OR FUTURE COLLECTIONS?
– Well, It’s hard to say because I took part in all of them. And I have fond memories of all of them. Probably because we are from a Mediterranean climate, our summer collections are brighter and more cheerful. I love the song of “The Happysads” collection, but also the values of ”Dear World”, the colors of ”Neverending Summer” or the prints of ”To make a garden”, my favorite, the Banana… I can’t decide! :-)
DO YOU HAVE A SPECIAL PIECE? SOMETHING THAT REALLY SHOWS YOUR PERSONALITY AND STYLE AS A CREATIVE DIRECTOR?
– I think the prints of the first collections are very iconic and characteristic for the brand. The Apple, the Cloud, and the Bowler Hat are very characteristic of the early years, and they have become a reality again thanks to the recently launched Iconic Collection, our most sustainable innovation yet!