At home in Barcelona with the founders of Tinycottons
Originally from Cordoba, Argentina, Barb and Gerard left their home country nearly ten years ago to settle in cosmopolitan Barcelona. Back in Argentina, Gerard was a child psychiatrist, Barb a fashion designer who’d had a passion for clothes since childhood. Their two daughters, Cruz (16) and Catalina (15) were born there, followed by their autistic brother, Gregorio (10). For Gerard, who regularly received children suffering from autism spectrum disorder (ASD), it became difficult to balance his professional activity and personal life, both closely related and emotionally-charged.
Smitten with Europe ever since he first travelled there when he was 25, he decided to move there to make a new start. After a “reconnaissance” trip via Barcelona, Madrid, Malaga and San Sebastian, Barb and Gerard eventually opted to set up home in Barcelona, attracted by the cultural energy of this coastal city and because Gerard had a chance to work there as an addiction specialist. So the couple moved there with their three children.
Barb looked after Gregorio full-time for the first year, but she couldn’t resist the call of fashion for long. She joined the Adidas design team, before launching Tinycottons in 2012 with her first Peruvian Pima cotton collection. The quality products and strong visual identity soon built up a faithful clientele. The brand’s popularity grew so quickly that Barb asked Gerard to join her on this bold adventure which had proved so successful that she was unable to cope with the massive workload alone. Tinycottons thus became a family business, at the heart of which Barb and Gerard seemed to have found the right
As adepts of minimalism, Barb and Gerard have a fondness for three things: white, wood and natural tones.
balance between their professional and private lives. They divide their time between office life in Barcelona and family life in Sant Cugat del Vallès, a town about fifteen minutes north of the Catalonian capital. Their home is in Valldoreix, a protected natural area far from the bustle of Barcelona. Their house is surrounded by a vast expanse of greenery. For Barb and Gerard, it was a case of love at first sight. Having visited more than thirty potential homes, and come away feeling disappointed, this one just seemed perfect. The view over the magnificent undulating forest no doubt had something to do with it.
As adepts of minimalism, Barb and Gerard have a fondness for three things: white, wood and natural tones. Built around two decades ago, the sober concrete and glass house immediately struck a chord. The kitchen, clad in yellow tiles, didn’t go down so well… So they designed another, all in wood, and had it hand-crafted. Opening onto the dining and living room, it is one of the spaces in which parents and children come together to share quality time over an Argentinian-Spanish meal. Barbecuing is obviously Gerard’s department. A true Argentine, he takes cooking meat very seriously and has built an outdoor fireplace
worthy of its name. “On the left, I cook paëlla; in the middle, pizzas, baked on lava stone; and this part is reserved for cooking meat. My next project is to install a fireplace inside.” The bedrooms upstairs on the first floor are for the parents, Gregorio and the youngest addition to the family, Vincent (8 months). Cruz and Catalina each have a room on the second floor, the floor Bard doesn’t often dare set foot on for fear of finding it too untidy… At the weekends, Barb and Gerard like to go to the market, then have lunch out with the family at Can Gula, a restaurant in Mercantic Vintage Village. They enjoy strolling around this local flea market or looking for furniture either for their home or for the Tinycottons stores, the latest of which opened in March in El Born, a picturesque district in Barcelona mixing local culture, art and modernity. If the couple return to Argentina every two years, being French speakers, they also take holidays in the South of France: Carcassonne, Pau, Perpignan, Toulouse... Unless they decide to take the whole family to Formentera. Travel is a major source of inspiration for Tinycottons, whose Summer 2018 collection just happens to be called “Hôtel Bonheur”.