EBW 2024 - The difference is now

As the doors of Messe Essen opened to the first day of the 10th anniversary edition of Europe's key bridal event, it was evident that this, the biggest trade expo in the industry, was committed to its pledge of “Celebrating Difference”.

And that difference was clear to see, as the visiting crowds, representing no less than several dozen countries, surged into the impressive halls to discover what the new season will bring – viewing, assessing, ordering, and enjoying more than 500 collections from names big and small.

Exhibition organisers United Fairs could not have been more than delighted. Said Event Director Siegrid Hampsink: “We were certainly anticipating a great turnout from the thousands of pre-registered retailers, but this first day surpassed our estimates.

“I do believe that providing the opportunity to see so much under a single roof puts us firmly ahead of any competition; shop owners have their own businesses to run and knowing they can see a huge number of trend-setting labels, plan and place orders at one single event, contributes to the health and well-being of their interests. In addition, the fact that European Bridal Week is early on the buying calendar means shops can expect deliveries at the time that works best for them.”

It is not only the halls and individual stands that were playing to a packed audience. The EBW Fashion Shows - always a feature and a real trend indicator – saw the best on stage in a brilliantly atmospheric setting. Cameras were flashing all around, and frequent applause confirmed a positive reaction to those starring labels.

Exhibitors within the Designer Gallery, another special of EBW that many regard as the finest advertisement for design innovation, were buzzing and creating a real talking point about new-generation styling. Q&A sessions, linked to achieving the best from your social media activities, also saw a huge flow of traffic.

“Celebrating Difference” says Siegrid, “has to be more than words. In this industry of ours which has seen its own challenges in recent years, being different means adopting new approaches, attracting attention, and delivering what your audience wants. Our exhibitors ably prove in their new collections that we are in the start of a whole new chapter in bridalwear, and we, as exhibition organisers, are proud to have been instrumental is facilitating change.”