Stimulated by the social and urban experience and the emerging culture of Porto, Daily Day is a concept store that abandons conventionalism and introduces a consumer experience which goes far beyond fashion.
A meeting point for musicians, artists, designers and lovers of the “savoir faire”, this space is in constant change, fusing the most authentic sides of the city with its effervescent contemporary movement. Filipe Prata, the face of the project, awaits us at 263 General Humberto Delgado square. He takes us on a guided tour through the motivation and ambitions of a brand that was born out of the simple desire to celebrate everyday life: seven days a week.
It was here in this building, built in the 1940s, in a shop previously occupied by a car dealership, that this concept began to take shape. In 2015, the discovery of this store location with a privileged view of the grand Avenida dos Aliados, presented Filipe Prata with the perfect conditions to implement the ideas that gave rise to Daily Day. What was initially thought of as a sustainable, urban and timeless clothing brand, quickly evolved into a multidisciplinary project, incorporating a concert stage, an exhibition gallery and a space open to the creativity of other brands and designers.
In the words of its founder, «Daily Day is both a space where things happen and where people go to talk and hang out as well as a laboratory where customers can say yes or no to the development of a particular product». In fact, what really makes this store so special is its intimate relationship with the city and the people who live in it. The proof of this is that, unlike so many other concept stores in Porto, half of its customers are locals. «The complexity of the world we live in is very interesting and is the most extraordinary thing that we can work with», explains Filipe Prata.
«If we can achieve something that corresponds to people’s expectations and dreams – to what they are on the inside and to their behaviour – we don’t need to impose anything on anyone and things flow naturally» he continues. In addition to Daily Day’s own brand and the Portuguese brands carried by the store (Carla Pontes, Hugo Costa, Reality Studio, La Paz, Weekend Barber, Wolf & Son, Lobo Marinho and Caiágua among others), they are backing the development of partnerships with other brands (Wolf & Son x Daily Day, Poente x Daily Day, Van Rohe x Daily Day) and promoting a diverse cultural agenda. Each month emerging talents take the stage through the so-called Daily Day Calling. Since its opening at the end of 2015, more than 30 artists have already joined this project, including musicians, illustrators, artists, designers and other creatives.
This proximity to the creative community of Porto is seen as a strong benefit for Daily Day. The first example of this union of knowledge and exchange of experience was inviting local milliner José Baião, to integrate his hat stand into the shop. Behind a small counter, this merchant smiles whenever he captures the interest of a visitor, gladly introducing the various hat models. The passionate and careful gestures with which he holds each model, illustrates the authenticity of his manifesto: «to contribute to the affirmation of the hat as an accessory of utmost importance in everyday life».
«We have an experimental culture, not only in the behaviour of Daily Day, but also in the products we present. Does everything go as planned? Impossible. But if we take chances and experiment, everything that goes well is much more valuable», he explains. «We believe that our working space has to stand out on its own. Its architecture, the curatorship of each product, the services it provides… It is this mixture of things that will create a pleasant and meaningful place to communicate new ideas», he adds. Filipe Prata speaks in the plural, because everything here is decided collectively. In addition to the team of three full-time workers in the store, there are three more people working in the design department and 70 more in production.
Another of Daily Day’s important pillars is sustainability and when the subject is addressed, Filipe Prata has a firm opinion. «We know that the clothing industry leaves an ecological footprint on the planet and it is our concern and responsibility to minimise this. As a core principle, we use natural materials such as wool, cotton, silk and we’re currently evolving to use organic cotton», he says. «But sustainability isn’t just linked to nature. I consider sustainability much more broadly than ecology. We have to sustain the planet like we have to sustain society and that starts with our workers» he continues.
«We don’t have anyone working for us without a contract, we don’t have unpaid internships and we are proud to say, that we have people working in production who have been with us for the last 37 years», tells Filipe Prata. In fact, earlier this year, this stance led Daily Day to join Fashion Revolution, a global movement that advocates for a more sustainable and transparent future for fashion. «Niche consumers are becoming more important to us, because they are better informed, have stronger opinions, have more buying power and start to reject other realities», he states. «Many of the consumers who enter our store want to know where the design, the production and the fabrics come from and we can answer with transparency», he highlights.
It was in mid2011 that Filipe Prata, grandson of a tailor and the son of a textile industrialist, discovered that the talent of the family business was flowing in his veins. Shortly after, he decided to abandon his career as a civil engineer and took over the management of LaGofra, a production unit located in Porto. «I joined the company to help my father solve some business problems and within few weeks I understood that we would have to make the decision to either shut down for good or to continue», he recalls. After a family conversation, they concluded that the best thing would be to continue and Filipe Prata decided to deepen his knowledge of marketing and business management and devote all his efforts into reshaping the business founded in 1934.
«I don’t have the disposition to run a factory where the only function is to produce for other companies. Therefore, I had two key premises: limiting the risk of the industrial fragility that comes with being exposed to foreign brands and having a more lively and relaxed atmosphere inside the factory to allow creativity to enter the business», he tells. «By the end of 2012, we were mainly exporting to new customers (Isabel Marant and Henrik Vibskov, among others) and with my growing involvement in the company it became clear to me what this business really is, what are its main fragilities and where can it really work». It was then that the first ideas that would lead to Daily Day began to emerge.
«Initially, the goal was for our brand to be sold primarily online and wholesale. We continue to do this, but now that our store occupies a famous space in town, it sometimes overshadows everything else» adds the businessman. He considers that «online business is not the future because it is already the present»,, and reveals that in the short to medium term, Daily Day will be opening its online store to the global market, as well as reinforcing the distribution in other markets further afield. At the Porto store, the near future will bring us even more artistic and cultural initiatives as well as the launching of new pieces on a weekly basis.
Regarding the possibility of opening new stores, Filipe Prata says that “we are constantly considering whether there should be a second Daily Day store in the future and, if so, how and where it would be. The most obvious path may be opening one in Lisboa or in another major European city, but it might also be completely different from that. The important thing is that, wherever it may be, the same spirit continues», he adds. «It has to be dynamic, it has to evolve with our expectations, with our desires and with reality itself. And it will continue like this», he concludes. In addition to the Porto concept store, Daily Day brand items are available online at Casa Mãe in the Algarve and at selected stores in the USA.