In the summer of 1986, Bart Koene, born and raised in Holland started his business. During a work placement in France he became bored. To enhance his working experience, Bart took to the sewing machine and started to make his own beach shorts. He decided to go ‘en route’ along the French coast looking for a place to spend the summer. He headed to Saint-Tropez and began selling his homemade beach shorts, displayed on a basic bamboo pole on this famous beach. Within six weeks he sold his entire stock! This humble beginning laid the foundation for what is now an internationally established accessories brand.
Leaving France, Bart embarked on a world trip. Arriving in Bali he bought beautiful, colourful fabrics to make more beach shorts and pants. He returned to Saint-Tropez. Life was relaxed and full of simple pleasures. Bart’s work did not go unnoticed by the rich and famous, many bought his colourful beachwear.
Bart was so successful that he expanded his collection. He ventured into selling accessories thereby making the collection appealing to women. In 1992 Bart launched the brand Barts in the Netherlands, starting with a summer collection of colored bandanas. He created a way to present his collection using the famous clay Barts heads which were handmade by his wife Kelly. The first collection was a success which then led to a winter collection of 3 different fleece hats! This of course is very different from the extensive Barts collection today.
From his home in the heart of Amsterdam, Bart focused his attention on hand-knitted winter accessories ensuring that the collections offered beautifully designed original items. Each style was designed in Amsterdam with passion and care, using the highest quality materials. Every year, the collection grew to be bigger, better and more beautiful. During these times scarves, a children’s range, technical gloves, and bags were added to the collection.

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