Barbara Bui was born in 1957 Paris, France. Her mother was French and her father was Vietnamese. She has a Master's degree in English literature and her background is in the theatre.
She married actor William Halimi and in the mid 1980's opened a boutique which they called "Kubuki". By 1988, Barbara was designing men’s and women’s collections. She is known for her clean lines and an off-beat femininity that combines cultural and ethnic influences.
She has her own stores in Paris, New York and Milan and also owns a café in Paris which opened in 1999. Her New York boutique in Soho opened in 1998. In 2001, Barbara launched her first US advertisement campaign. David Bailey, the famous fashion photographer, took the pictures required.
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