Cláudia Azevedo Lopes
One can’t be sure if it’s the smocks, the embroideries or delicate knits, but the truth is that the children’s clothing company B’Lovely is an outright success in Italy. “The Italians love this collection. We’ve had a customer from Napoli that didn’t even want to know the prices. They like it, and that’s that. They purchased smocks like there was no tomorrow… They simply went wild”, relays Cristina Ribeiro, the owner of the brand.
It all came as a surprise for the entrepreneur, considering that the target defined by B’Lovely was the British market, more in line with the classical style of the brand, which even so still competes with Italy regarding order volume.
“This collection was made with the United Kingdom in mind because it is a more classical market and so is the collection, with good materials and a lot of detail. Ultimately, this tends to hike up the price for the end consumer. The English, which we had initially thought as our target, also like the collection, but complain about the price: they find it too high”, she added.
B’Lovely, which position themselves as a high segment brand, is 100% made in Portugal, and amongst its suppliers are nationally renowned companies such as Somelos, Vilarinho or Armazém dos Linhos. It is not hard to imagine, therefore, that it has pleased the demanding Italian customers. This is yet another proof of the trend that seems to transverse our textile industry: that Portugal is setting itself as the new Italy, the latter being one of the biggest buyers of Portuguese textiles.
Made with exporting in mind, B’Lovely has a single client in Portugal, Lisbon’s El Corte Inglès, which represents 30% of its annual turnover.