LONDON — Up-and-coming designer Malene Oddershede Bach is focusing on growing her London-based brand in the U.S. market, with a trunk show of her spring collection launching on Moda Operandi on Oct. 22.
Oddershede Bach, who was originally part of the young designer showcase Fashion Scout, is known for her colorful, romantic creations that often blend masculine and feminine elements. For spring she presented a collection heavy on dresses — from strapless, pleated ones, to sheer shirt models — which feature playful feather embellishments on fil coupé fabrics and floral-embroidered silk organzas.
Mirroring the subtle metallic sheen of the floral embroidery, the designer also included a series of bold trenchcoats, shirts and midi-length skirts in cobalt blue and deep purple lamé fabrics. The designer explained her choice of fabrics informs the starting point for every collection and that here, she wanted to create a cohesive theme tying together the metallic floral silks with the high-shine lamé materials. Using bold color is another brand signature for the designer. For spring, she updated her palette with soft pastel hues.
All the fabrics are sourced from Italy, while the collection is produced in London. Even though the newly weak pound, which has been in decline since the recent European Union referendum, might mean that her fabrics will cost more, Oddershede Bach remains positive.
“I’m not worrying about it too much. Everything is produced in the U.K. at the end of the day, and this is currently making our product more attractive to international buyers given the weaker pound. We were writing orders so much faster this time around, the whole process of the buying appointments was easier,” said the designer.
Oddershede Bach also said that her aesthetic, which gears toward more refined, ladylike fashion, has been a better fit to the U.S. market instead of the U.K.
“In London at the moment young designers are all about the shock value and exploring bad taste, so it’s hard to tap into that market. I prefer pretty fashion,” said the designer, highlighting that her cocktail dresses can offer customers a beautiful option for a wedding but they can also be dressed down and made to look more boyish if layered under tailored outerwear like her sleeveless belted coat.
“I’m not actually too feminine myself. I always layer things and incorporate masculine elements in the collections. Maybe it has to do with being a farmer’s daughter,” she added.
Oddershede Bach’s retail network is mostly focused on the U.S. In addition to Moda Operandi, she is stocked in Los Angeles’ Satine Boutique and at McKenzie Claire in New York. She also generates a big part of her company’s sales through its own e-commerce, which also caters to the U.S.
In addition to the brand’s Stateside expansion plans, one of the designer’s other aims is to start offering her customer a full look. She currently produces a range of youthful pouches embellished with gold hardware and retro round-frame sunglasses. A new accessories collection of both bags and eyewear is set to launch at the beginning of 2017.