Design in Barcelona

Ever since the 1992 Olympic Games blew the lid off any lingering doubts about Barcelona's contemporary creative potential, new clothing designers and boutiques have been proliferating. Barcelona’s Fashion Week (called 080, in reference to the city’s postcode) showcases the remarkable local talent. Meanwhile, the Gaudí, formerly Barcelona's main event, has become Barcelona Bridal Week, featuring a runway dedicated to nuptial styles. 080 Barcelona Fashion relies largely on young local designers as well as traditional heavyweights such as Antonio Miró, Armand Basi, Purificación Garcia, and Adolfo Domínguez.

As for the shops, you can find everything from local clothing stars Mango and Custo to whimsical design objects at BD (Barcelona Design) to old crafts standbys such as La Manual Alpargatera or Art Escudellers; Barcelona may end up as famous for shopping as for architecture and design. El Born, the old waterfront district tucked in behind Santa Maria del Mar in the Born, teems with young artisans and designers; the Eixample, the midtown grid labyrinth of Art Nouveau architecture, is rife with innovatively designed spaces selling equally original items of all kinds. The outlying villages of Gràcia and Sarrià are becoming bite-size boutique havens with much more to admire than quiet streets and leafy palms.

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