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Ojalá Wants to Shore Up Presence in Barcelona in 2014

2 July, 2013

Ojalá! shop in Ciutat street of Barcelona. / Ojalá!

Fashion firm Paloma del Pozo is gearing up to open its second establishment in the Catalan capital.

The first boutique that fashion designer Paloma del Pozo opened in Catalonia lies in the centrally located and charismatic carrer Ciutat in Barcelona and responded to the creator’s desire to forge closer ties with the Mediterranean.

“The Ojalá style has a Mediterranean air that is closely linked to Barcelona. It also helps that Paloma del Pozo is crazy about the city,” explains the firm’s Barcelona sales manager, Èrika Centellas.

The roots

It was during a lengthy stay in Morocco that Paloma del Pozo materialised her vocation for fashion design. In that country on the southern shores of the Mediterranean she left her professional career in advertising and industrial design behind.

After a few years spent implementing the technical infrastructure and personnel she needed to get a fashion business off the ground, Ojalá finally saw the light of day.

This was in 2006 and the official launch of the company marked the start of a new business project. Two years later, the designer presented her first collection.

“The first Ojalá collections had a very important Eastern influence. Later on, the designs drank from other fountains of inspiration and have shown much more visual universes,” explains the label’s sales manager.

Abstract paintings, the circus, childhood, long trips and Audrey Hepburn movies are just some of the themes that have marked the more contemporary Paloma del Pozo pieces.

Slow but steady growth

Ojalá, which now boasts its own stores in Madrid and Barcelona, is preparing the opening of the second shop in the Spanish capital this year, along with the second one in Barcelona.

The latter opening will most likely be in 2014. The Eixample and Born districts are good candidates for housing it.

“We are also considering having stores in other cities across Spain, such as Seville or Palma, and our dream is to open an Ojalá store in London and in Rome – crisis permitting, of course!” Centellas says.

However, the crisis isn’t the only conditioning factor the firm has considered when planning its expansion. The other, and the one that is probably more important to continue to uphold the label’s values, is how to prevent turning the limited runs and unique pieces it makes into a mass production process.

“We anticipate opening an online store as well but we will continue to work as we’ve always done, on a small scale and without losing our artisan, family spirit. We don’t want a chain of shops. We want a small label that is present in different places,” Èrika Centellas states.

Despite that, finding the balance between growing and consolidating the unique appeal will not be easy, she acknowledges.

The Ojalá team knows that the key to its success over these past years has been particularly to offer “exclusive, quality designer clothes that are tailor-made and reasonably priced”. 

This is a combination of factors very much in keeping with new consumer trends based on more carefully considered purchasing decisions and influenced by concepts such as durability and source of production.

“When you buy one of our pieces, you know you are getting a timeless product. Its quality means you will be able to wear it for years and you will become awfully fond of it,” emphasizes Èrika Centellas. In this regard, she says that modern technology is a huge aid in being able to personalise production processes even for small runs.

Other essential showcases

As well as its own stores, Ojalá is also reaching out to fashion shows as system for promoting and raising awareness about its work. 

The meeting with www.barcelonaesmoda.com coincides with days of frantic activity for Ojalá, as they are preparing to apply to show at Passarel·la 080 de Barcelona, to be held in the DHUB building in July.

This wouldn’t be the first time Ojalá has taken part in a fashion show in the Catalan capital: it did so in 2011 when it formed part of the trade fair The Brandery. Paloma del Pozo has also been able to showcase her designs in Paris and Madrid – the firm featured at the Madrid Fashion Week Off-Show and at Prêt-à-Porter in Paris.

Closer to the world of art than design, Paloma del Pozo is taking advantage of fashion to convey to people “an aesthetic and also an ethic that usually take the form of poetry,” says Èrika Centellas, who is excited about the future projects and path that Ojalá is taking.

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