Barbara Bui: For Elegant Women with a Wild Side


Barbara Bui is not for the faint of heart.

With a fierceness about her, Bui designs for every woman’s inner rockstar. Born in France in 1956 to a French Mother and a Vietnamese Father, her hybrid culture influences the cultural elements that she displays in her work, as well as her concept of blending the masculine and the feminine.

Her signature design blends rock n roll chic, modern elegance, and ethnic flair. Not surprisingly, leather is a material she uses often because of its ability to be “sensual and strong at the same time.”

Bui designs for the woman who possesses both a strong character and an emotional sensitivity. In her words,  “[This woman] can be completely involved with contemporary life, while at the same time manages to keeps her own spirit.”

She believes that when a woman possesses a quality product, it helps to make her feel stronger, more confident.



Her latest Winter 2014 collection recently debuted at Paris Fashion Week, and I enjoyed her contrast of ivory and blacks, as if depicting day and night. Staying true to her commitment to dress the femme rock star, her latest collection involved strong pieces such as a cropped leather motorcycle jacket (of course) combined with big fur sleeves. Oversized cable knit ponchos reflected the knitwear trend of the winter season, and snakeskin prints juxtaposed with creamy ivory trousers suits the elegant woman with a wild side. In my opinion, the collection was entirely wearable, and gives women the capacity to stay warm, comfortable, and edgy in the kind of harsh season that is not always easy to dress for.

Barbara Bui was a writer before she became a designer. She received her Master’s in English literature and has a background in theater. She opened her first boutique on Rue Etienne in Paris in 1988, becoming one of the first designers to launch an eponymous label. She has been unanimously selected as a member of “Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Francaise et de Createures de Mode” as of 2003.

By: Ruby Veridiano

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