The MCM brand shows no signs of slowing in its ascent to becoming a billion-dollar brand.The accessories company — German-born and Korean-run, helmed by chief visionary officer Sung-Joo Kim — will this week present its first full-fledged ready-to-wear collection at Pitti Uomo. The presentation is a branding exercise, meant to flex not only the brand’s financial prowess, but also its full-circle luxury vision.“I think to be a luxury brand, you have to once in a while show what you are doing to a top level of global buyers and media and that’s why we are showing at Pitti,” said Kim.“The runways are no longer driving trends. The catwalk is a moment for brand expression at the highest level for top global buyers and media. We use this avenue as the manifestation of the brand focus for the coming season,” she added.The company established a Milan design studio in December, filling its ranks with alums of brands including Jil Sander, Prada, Céline, Saint Laurent and Versace. While MCM has sold outerwear and limited basics in the past, Wednesday’s presentation will be its first complete apparel vision. The brand will allot space for the collection in its own key stores and plans to eventually wholesale the designs.The MCM label was purchased by Kim, a veteran of the luxury industry, in 2005 and has grown to become a global accessories powerhouse. The brand’s sales for 2018 are on track to clock $650 million, and are next year projected to reach $900 million.While rtw is a new venture for the label, Kim does not see it accounting for more than 10 percent of global sales. “A lot of top luxury brands like Gucci have a leather goods background, but make clothes, too,” she said of the rationale behind the rtw venture. “We do a substantial portion of our business in the Asian markets where customers prefer to see a complete look. This is also a growing trend in the Europe and U.S. markets."At Pitti, the brand will show a collection titled “Luft” (German for air), which will evoke stylistic elements of its “global nomad” consumer profile. A preview sketch of the collection shows a tracksuit emblazoned with the MCM name. “We are still new to rtw; however, we plan to offer key items that stem from the needs of our main audience — a global nomad. As a German brand, we try to be more functional, with high-tech fabrics. It will be quite a different attitude than what conventional luxury is doing,” Kim said.While it has a global presence, MCM takes a regional approach to its retailing and marketing efforts. The product sold in Seoul is tailored to that hyperfeminine, trend-driven market, while merchandise in New York veers more classic and urban.In an effort to bolster U.S. sales, MCM has embarked on a creative marketing strategy. It has funded “The Remix: Hip Hop x Fashion,” a documentary that premiered its trailer at April’s Tribeca Film Festival. The film is due out in the first half of next year. It focuses on Nineties hip-hop stylist Misa Hylton — who heralded a fashion movement in which MCM took part. Rather than create a commercial bearing the company’s logo, MCM hopes funding an independent film will ingratiate the brand with the Millennial consumer.“When MCM was popular in the Nineties in the hip-hop community, people like Dapper Dan were designing MCM bootlegs because we weren’t around to sue them. The company had gone bankrupt. It’s why people like Mike Tyson were wearing bootleg MCM stuff. This is why, in the U.S. we have always had a connection to hip-hop. It’s when hip-hop got started trying to find its style, it wanted to get into the luxury space,” Kim explained of the film’s relation to the brand.She added: “Millennials celebrate culture, so we decided to align with hip-hop culture. It’s about promoting a lifestyle and promoting a cultural movement.”In the meantime, MCM released the first installment of its collaborative partnership with Puma last month. The collection’s limited-edition run of sneakers and tracksuits sold out in the U.S. within six minutes.
“I design by visualization. I see things, and most of the time they’re not practical to actually make, and what I’ve found here, it’s like anything’s possible. This is the first time that I’ve made a sole unit in two months. That process usually would take six, so here’s a difference,” said @virgilabloh of the first sneaker sample he created for @louisvuitton, pictured here. Abloh spoke to WWD about his debut collection for Louis Vuitton, creating @kendalljenner’s #metgala outfit and redefining the heritage brand. Read the full story on WWD.com. #wwdfashion (📷: @alfredo_piola)
The world’s largest producer of denim @iskodenim is sharing the strategy behind its product development process. Read our full interview with ISKO’s product development manager Baris Ozden on the company’s extensive research practices, upcoming denim trends and the latest material innovations on WWD.com. #iskodenim
“I genuinely fell in love with water, I fell in love with Fiji, I fell in love with the whole life that we lived for those few months,” says @mrsamclaflin of filming for his new movie “Adrift” with @shailenewoodley. The 31-year-old actor spoke with WWD about his upcoming projects, meeting Jamie Dornan and working with co-star Woodley. #wwdeye (📷: @jamstoker)
3 years ago, fans of the late singer Aaliyah started calling for a collaboration with @maccosmetics. With the strength of social media — including mock ups of products — 25,000 people signed a Change.org petition for a limited-edition collection, and MAC couldn’t ignore the buzz. Tomorrow, MAC will unveil MAC x Aaliyah, a tribute to the singer who passed away nearly 17 years ago. Head to our stories to preview the new collection, which was worked on by Aaliyah’s family and inspired directly by her makeup bag. #wwdbeauty
Artistic director @clarewaightkeller will be dedicating @givenchyofficial’s fall 2018 couture show in Paris on July 1 to house founder Hubert de Givenchy, who passed away in March at age 91. Givenchy said the collection would be “an homage to his iconic creations, technique, and personal lexicon” and a “celebration of his timeless elegance and grace.” Head to WWD.com to read more. #wwdfashion (📷: Delphine Achard)
La Double J made a name for itself with its vintage-inspired prints, but for resort, designer JJ Martin has ventured into new territory: enter rich jewel toned solids and decadent embellishment, in the form of appliqués, crystals and sequins. #wwdfashion #resort19 #ladoublej
This Just In: J. Crew Group has named Johanna Uurasjarvi as its chief design officer.
Uurasjarvi succeeds Somsack Sikhounmuong, who left the company last September. Tap the link in bio for the full report. #wwdnews
“She came into my hotel room and she was like, ‘I have Chanel and Christian Dior.’ She was like, ‘Chanel likes you.’ And I was like, ‘I’m going to start crying,’” breakout star Maddie Hasson tells WWD of her styling sessions Molly Dickson. “I really like classic, elegant things. I love the way Anna Wintour dresses.” Read more about Hasson’s role in @impulseseries on wwd.com. (📸: @jgreenery ) #wwdeye
@virgilabloh revealed he's working with Australian stylist and
Vogue Australia fashion director @christinecentenera for his debut @louisvuitton men's collection, which will be presented in Paris on June 21. Centenera met Abloh while both working with Kanye West, where she consulted on his all his runway collections since his debut spring 2012 women's wear show. Read the full story on WWD.com. #wwdfashion #wwdnews (📷: @asussmanphoto)