|From Fetish to Party: Mister B Celebrates Twenty-Fifth Anniversary!|
by Marco Hohl in Scene , 23 February 2019
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The most famous leather and fetish shop in the world is celebrating its anniversary with a party at Club Church in Amsterdam. On March the second, Mister B will be twenty-five years young! We spoke to brand and event manager Tony de Wilde about this anniversary year and to look back at the history of this iconic brand.
Tony, congratulations on your anniversary! On March 2, 1994, Mister B opened its doors with its first store on the Warmoesstraat. How did it all get started?
“It all started with Mister B himself: Wim Bos. He worked at RoB and decided to start his own business. His main goal was to make fetish more visible, as much was taken place behind closed curtains. Wim thought that we should be proud of ourselves and that everyone should see that. Our first store, for instance, had a huge window so that every passer-by could look inside. Nowadays, fetish is much more mainstream, which is cool to see.
Mister B has supported GLBT community initiatives right from the start. Wim was involved in the development of the very first editions of the Amsterdam Gay Pride and the Leather Pride. We still think that is important. Recently, we mainly support organizations in countries where ‘being gay’ is still an issue, such as The Nest in Poland, which is a foundation that stands up for GLBT people with psychological problems. We have grown considerably over the past twenty-five years. We now have stores in Amsterdam, Berlin and Antwerp, and we sell fetish gear to the entire world via MisterB.com.”
How are you celebrating this anniversary?
“In several ways. We celebrate our birthday all year round, but we’ll kick off at the end of February during the Leather & Fetish Pride Belgium in Antwerp. During a special art gallery show, we will sell photos that we have used over the past twenty-five years for our campaigns, including work by top photographers such as Erwin Olaf and Max Samauth. Two weeks later, on Saturday, March 2, it is our actual anniversary.
Firstly, we have a fun activity at our new flagship store on the Prinsengracht and then go on to celebrate at Club Church during ‘Mister B(i)(z)onderbroek,’ with DJ William Sizen Bell from Manchester and performances by our favorite go-go-boys. And much more still. During Pride Amsterdam, for instance, our boat is all about our anniversary, and we will be highly visible at Folsom Europe in Berlin in September. Keep an eye on our website for all events and promotions!”
You have been involved with Mister B for a considerable time now. What is your favorite memory?
“I am very proud of our cooperation with Erwin Olaf. We did a shoot with him in the legendary cruise bar The Boots in Antwerp for our twentieth anniversary. It was all rather mucky, but great to do. At one point we had to move a gynaecological examination chair upstairs through four staircases. Let me put it this way: that chair was used quite a lot. That shoot also confirmed that we were doing a great job as a team. The vibe was absolutely wonderful, and Erwin was very enthusiastic about how we had arranged it all.”
Finally, would you like to share something with the readers?
“We moved to the Prinsengracht at the end of 2018. Our new store is modern with an industrial edge. It has a very clear layout with all the leather on the top floor, rubber downstairs, and all products are displayed beautifully in glass showcases. There are also screens that clearly show our photo campaigns.
It leaves the customer with a certain feeling; the image you have in your head about fetish, you see coming back on those screens. This is the Mister B of today and of the future, which will continue to provide our customers with gear for their wildest fantasies. I hope everyone will drop by on March 2 to experience it for themselves and to celebrate our anniversary with us. And if you are busy during the day, then you can try again later at our anniversary party in Club Church!”
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