Her blue hair tips, her perpetual smile... everyone who works in kid's fashion knows who Petra Barkhof is. Petra is the queen of playful trends and we just love the way she sees and portrays childhood in her magazine.
Without further ado, let's meet Petra!
Ahoy Petra! Welcome to our journal, it’s such a pleasure to have you here today! Could you introduce yourself to our sailors? Where are you from, where are you based...?
Thrilled to be here and feeling the waves of excitement! Thanks for having me on board in this wonderful adventure.
I live in Milan, but I’m a baby boomer from Germany where I lived till I was nineteen, when I decided I wanted to go and see the world outside of my country. Ibiza was my dream, the dream of my generation, not yet so popular at that time but only famous among the young people who went there from all over the world to find another way of living. I was one of them and in Ibiza I lived my dream too: the weather, the sea, the friends, life was kind and easy. My daughter Patricia is an “ibicenco” product, I also started a little business of clothes I used to sell on the beach. Some years later in Italy I met my husband… and here I am. Still, happily, after more than 40 years!
We believe you're a super creative trendsetter guru, how do you define yourself?
Maybe a guru is too much of a definition, but I believe I am a quite good trendsetter. I have a kind of intuition for the new fashion tendencies which often surprise me too. I think of a theme and, after months, everyone is talking about it. The curious thing is that I never thought of myself as such a creative person. It is something I have discovered when I approached the world of kid's fashion, after a long career in women's fashion starting with the Italian Condè Nast when I first arrived in Milan.
Tell us about your kid’s fashion magazine, Scimparello Magazine. Is this your dream project?
Yes, definitely. Scimparello
is my world, encompassing my thoughts, tastes, ideas, desires, mood, and personality, occupying a significant portion of my time! The way I see life, the way I see kids and, through them, the future. It is joyful, colorful, filled with curiosity, art, interviews, interesting news, amazing pictures, funny stories, great fashion and much much love. Or, at least, I try every day to make it like that!
You know (and have worked with) hundreds of kid’s brands. Is it difficult to find one that stands out? Can you share your current favorite?
After the pandemic, and the economic crisis that followed, it is quite difficult to find new brands that really stand out. I must honestly acknowledge that everyone is putting tremendous efforts and striving to excel. However, the decision to create "easy" collections for assured sales might at times seem like a more convenient route during these difficult times. And this is not good for creativity which also needs investing in risks.
Actually, one of my favorites is the new Korean brand Momohanipopo. I love the name and its sound, and their collections are very colorful and artistic. I believe that when it comes to kids’ fashion, being inventive and innovative is very important for a brand because children need to be raised with beauty in order to express their imagination, the originality and the pureness they have inside.
We were beyond happy when you wanted to feature our Bonitos in some of your editorials. Why did they catch your eye?
Oh, well, the fact that they're boneless! Just kidding ;-) Fish bones have been a childhood nightmare of mine, which is a major reason why I’m still selective about the types of fish I eat. But in all seriousness, your collections
are incredibly captivating, amusing, bursting with color, and perfect for photography. And every time I use them in my shootings I see children love them as much as I do! So, please, keep doing what you're doing so well.
Thank you for joining us, Petra! We loved diving into your joyful universe.
Don't miss Petra's magazine, Scimparello if you need lots of inspiration!
Petra's pictures were taken by photographer Claudia Zocca at Fuerteventura
Editorial pictures for Style Piccoli “Pronti per Partire”
Styling by @petrabarkhof