May 29, 2014

MBF Announcements

Recently our Creative Director, Manuela Fassbender was asked to guest write an article for on eco-fashion. She chose to focus on conscious consumerism by examining how our changing lifestyles and the growing demand for transparency and social responsibility coincide. To learn more about which companies are leading the sustainability movement and to read the full article, click here.

photo via Texworld

In other news, we are happy to officially announce that MBF will be hosting a panel discussion at the upcoming Texworld USA. Entitled The Future Is Now: New Games And New Rules, we will be evaluating how new drivers are impacting the fashion industry and gaining market share is more challenging than ever. Guest speakers include Maxine Bédat Co-founder of Zady, Liz Bacelar Founder CEO of Decoded Fashion, and Julia Straus VP, Partnerships and Business Development  at BaubleBar.

photo via

We first introduced you to Maxine when we interviewed her last December. However, her continued dedication and growing success makes her an excellent example of how one should approach sustainability. As the Co-Founder of, Maxine has set out to recreate the world of retail by connecting people, nourishing the demand for authenticity and sustainability, and bringing back the slow-fashion movement for coming generations. Not to mention, she's got a background in international law and advocacy which led her to work in Africa and consequently inspired the launch of The Bootstrap Project, a nonprofit organization devoted to helping artisans in the developing world.

photo via Julie Straus

If you haven't noticed, Baublebar is everywhere right now, and it's not just a by-product of their affordable statement jewelry. At the forefront of e-commerce brands who's strategy is to cut out the middleman, Baublebar has enrolled the help of Julie Straus to handle the company's global digital and offline partnerships. With previous experience leading PopSugar Media's direct e-commerce and an MBA from Harvard, Julie is equipped with the know-how for running both a brick and mortar business and a virtual one.

photo via Liz Bacelar

Decoded Fashion is a global event series that connects the top tech founders and decision-makers in the fields of fashion, beauty, and retail. As the Founder and CEO, Liz Bacelar has a well-rounded background in communications and as an Emmy-nominated network TV producer. Her familiarity with the fashion and technology worlds has led her to host a variety of events that reach over 7,000 executives, entrepreneurs, and investors in more than 12 countries via summits, expos, pitch competitions, hackathons, newsletters, mentorship sessions, and networking events.

These women are leaders in the fashion industry and with the help of their expertise, we will cover the topics of conscious consumerism, fashion and technology, and the evolution of Fortune 500 companies and start-ups. We invite you to join us on Thursday, July 24th at 12:30PM at Texworld USA. Be sure to check out the full seminar schedule and we look forward to seeing you there! 

May 22, 2014

Access Granted

We all want we can't have, or at least what we think we can't have. However in today's world with the onset of technology, the internet, and globalization, this is practically irrelevant because we can have it all, no matter where we are. While Australia may be thousands of miles away and a 20 plus hour flight, it is finally catching up to the rest of the world and becoming a hub for both imports and exports of the hottest internationally recognized brands.

What we know is, Australian shoppers prefer to shop online and reportedly contributed to over $15 billion in online retail sales over the last year, and that only continues to strengthen. E-commerce not only gives access to these foreign labels, but also the power to choose among an endless array of products that were never available to them before. With most big and small name brands offering shipping around the world, retailers have been able to experiment across the Australian market and understand the growing potential, causing some to expand into the Southern Hemisphere.

photo via Australian Vogue

Stores that were once filled with solely Australian labels, are now being exposed to a plethora of cutting-edge fashion labels from around the world that offer entirely new shopping experiences. Not to mention such global hard hitters like Uniqlo, H&M, and Tod's have just opened up shop and Sephora is next. At the moment, there is no real beauty chain of its kind present in Australia, apart from department store cosmetic counters, pharmacies, and independent brands. With an expected launch date in early 2015, two of Australia's biggest department chains are already keen to do what JC Penney has done with Sephora and integrate it into its stores. In lieu of such success in Asia, the one-stop makeup haven has instead decided to open up standalone stores and it's really going to shake up the market.

However, shopping these overseas retailers comes with a fee as a new survey exposes the discrepancies in pricing between Australian brick and mortar and retailers' international online stores. By comparing fast fashion brands like ASOS, Gap, Topshop, and Zara, it's pretty clear that Australians are paying as much as a 35% premium on merchandise. Meanwhile, retailers are blaming price increases on local taxes, freight, and labour expenses. To make matters worse, these e-commerce sites are equipped with geo-blocking features that direct shoppers to a specific online store based on their location so they are unable to shop at a fairer price from a different country.

photo via Refinery29

In the interim of this Northern Hemisphere invasion, Australians are beginning to make a name for themselves elsewhere. Besides well known Sass & Bide, Dion Lee, and Zimmerman who have already paved the way north, a fresh group of talent is following right in their footsteps. While many of Australia's best kept secrets still remain stateside like uber trendy fashion labels Witchery, Finders Keepers, and Cameo, a few are making their way over to us here in the USA.

photo via Oneteaspoon

A favorite among many and available at hot spots like Revolve Clothing, ASOS, and Free People, Oneteaspoon is the epitome of Australia's rebellious spirit. The label made its official debut in 2000 after designer Jamie Walsham caught a bus from Queensland to Sydney at age 18 and set the precedence for its signature rock'n'roll attitude. Fast forwarding to today, Oneteaspoon is now stocked in 32 countries across the globe, worn by Emma Roberts, Vanessa Hudgens, Alessandra Ambrosio among many other "it" girls, and has even expanded into homewares.

photo via Refinery29

Bec and Bridge is the brainchild of Sydney duo Becky Cooper and Bridget Yorston and is about to change the way you wear denim. The pair initially launched the label well over a decade ago and their sexy body-con dresses and skirts are finally picking up speed in the US. Their most recent collection entitled "Indigo," bears the same name as their source of inspiration, a coffee table book by Catherine Legrand. With a modern take on denim, the line is full of patchwork jackets, raw edged chambray and indigo tweed that is polished off with additions of 3D mesh, silk pinstripes, and gorgeous batik patterns.

So despite news that the Australian market is undergoing a fashion crisis, it's really just more of an overall shift. For the Aussies, shopping domestically just isn't cool. While that will eventually change as they gain the same access as the rest of the world, the fashion industry down under has a lot of development ahead of it first. As with everywhere else, brands move in and out depending on the demand and right now going global is the thing to do, the only thing to do. 

May 15, 2014

Dress Like A Man

What once was a lady's world is quickly changing as more men begin to conquer the fashion blogosphere with expert styling techniques, grooming advice, and of course covetable outfit formulas for any type of scenario. The voice and fashion sense of this new breed (or sex) of bloggers is dedicated to helping men dress better and teaching them how to translate contemporary trends into their own wardrobes. With so much already going on in cyberspace, these are the best of the best, bookmark-worthy menswear blogs out there.

A Continuous Lean
Founded in 2007 just before the menswear boom, this NYC based blog is the epitome of quality, style, and provenance. While some call him the godfather of menswear blogging, Michael Williams is not only the voice behind it all, but also the co-founder of Paul + Williams, a menswear focused PR and marketing firm. He covers everything from fashion to travel, product reviews, Made in the USA, and even highlights on tidbits of history and influential figures. Basically, the blog embodies all things interesting in a man's life and even more.

photo via I Am Galla

I Am Galla
With international recognition as a blogger, wardrobe stylist, and personal shopper all under his belt by 22, we can't wait to see what Adam Gallagher does next in the fashion world. His blog is full of editorial like stories documenting not only his modern perspective on fashion but his fabulous lifestyle and travels. What all began as an extension of his lookbook account at age 17, today has made him a fashion icon and given him an extraordinary fan base that's multiplying on the regular. Most recently, he's teamed up with Timberland as a Mark Maker for the launch of their Spring collection and we're sure this is just the beginning.

photo via Fashion Beans

Fashion Beans
If you're looking for an online magazine that's a one stop shop for everything you need to know about timeless style as a 21st century gent, well you've just found it. The site was founded in 2007 and today is backed by a talented team of experts specializing in fashion, grooming, health and fitness, street style trends, and of course, "the next big thing." One of our favorite perks on the site is that they offer all the latest discount codes from the likes of Urban Outfitters, ASOS, and Topman for all your shopping needs.

photo via Stay Classic

Stay Classic
Meet Tim Melideo, an LA photographer and super stylish dude. Stay Classic is a complication of his everyday life through his daily outfit posts which mix up a variety of different brands into one polished look. We can't help but love his style and how easy it is to shop as well. Not to mention, his Instagram is a compelling collection of retro looking snaps and OOTDs that will keep you inspired for days.

photo via Valet Mag

Valet Mag
Independently published and developed for the modern gentleman, Valet delivers day by day news on fashion, grooming, and culture for an audience of well-styled early adopters. The savvy online magazine is acclaimed for introducing the latest brands and products to the menswear realm. You'll also find another added extra called "The Edit," which features snapshots of curated topics from around the world including a daily "Watch List," which gives readers the chance to check out a selection of the best videos all in one spot.

photo via Edward's Hair

Edward's Hair
Highlighting his favorite outfit and music inspirations, you'll catch Edward Honaker styling everything from mainstream labels like Forever 21 and H&M to more high-end designers like Dolce & Gabbana and Paul Smith. No matter what he's wearing he always looks sharp, but with a quirky, boyish flare. Also, did we mention he has really great hair?

photo via Kate Loves Me

Kate Loves Me
Named for his love of Kate Moss, Pelayo Diaz is one of the hottest bloggers out there. Not only does he stem from Madrid, but he has a fashion design background from Central St. Martins, and come night, he DJs as well. This guy's got some edge and it's catching the eyes of editors, street photographers, designers, and celebs from around the globe with his clever style and artistic vision.

photo via Tahanga

You may have already heard but just in case, we are happy to officially announce that our Creative Director, Manuela Fassbender is now the co-founder of an exciting new menswear brand called Tahanga. By incorporating the latest advances in textile science, Tahanga combines style with functionality and design. From your bike to the conference room to the bar, you can now say "goodbye" to sweat marks forever. So stay tuned for more updates on the brand and the launch of its Kickstarter campaign by following Tahanga here:


May 8, 2014

Two Names Are Better Than One

It seems to be the season for fashion collaborations as brands from high to low seek a high profile name to pair up with. The idea of bringing luxury labels and celebrity designed wardrobes to the masses has become practically the norm in the eye of retail and it's not changing anytime soon. So get your agendas ready because these are some fashion collabs your wardrobe will not want to miss.

photo via Elle

Kate Moss x Topshop
She did it again! After 4 years, Kate Moss has returned for yet another collaboration with the fast fashion retailer Topshop, and this time it's shoppable in 39 countries worldwide as well as in Nordstrom stores,, and The collection ranges from $76 to $1,200 and most of it adorned with fun details like beading, fringe, and sequins so you can get your statement Kate Moss on. As expected last week's launch at Topshop's Oxford Circus drew in enormous crowds and of course London's A-list ladies which included Cara Delevingne, Suki Waterhouse, Sienna Miller, and Naomi Campbell at a private after party event.

photo via Vanity Fair

Proenza Schouler x MAC
Fashion and makeup go together like well, designers Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough. Available now, this makeup range emulates Proenza Schouler's bold clothing and iconic prints with a super vibrant colour palette of lipsticks and blushes that pair with dark eyeliners and dramatic nail polishes. The collection is all about being effortless and balances beauty with fashion in the most downtown cool of ways. All those in favor of looking like a Proenza girl, say yay!

Banana Republic x Marimekko
Earlier this year, Banana Republic announced a collaboration with Finnish designer Marimekko and lucky for us the first sneak peek of the 22-piece collection is finally here. Arriving in stores on May 22, this limited edition capsule is full of Marimekko's artistic prints that grace the likes of signature Banana silhouettes like midi skirts, cropped skinny pants, maxi dresses, tunics, rompers, and other separates. Full of uniquely patterned pieces that will surely stand out from the rest of your wardrobe, you may just have found your summer statements.

photo via

Karlie Kloss x Warby Parker
Although the capsule collection doesn't launch until June 10th, Karlie has already been building major buzz by wearing the 70's inspired sunnies around NYC with bestie Taylor Switft. The sunglass range includes three metal frames with ombre lenses and all sales of the $145 specs benefit the nonprofit Edible Schoolyard NYC, which encourages healthy eating for kids in low income public schools.

photo via

CFDA and Amazon
In further efforts toward world domination, Amazon's MyHabit private sale website will now host an online designer shop to benefit the CFDA foundation. Starting this July, fashionistas alike will be able to shop their favorite designers at a discount AND contribute to a good cause with all proceeds going towards disaster relief, HIV/AIDS and breast cancer charities. So far, everyone from Tommy Hilfiger, Ralph Lauren, and Michael Kors to Marc Jacobs, Alexander Wang, Tory Burch and Oscar de la Renta, among many others, have already joined the initiative.

photo via

After confirming a long term partnership with Pharrell Williams, Adidas Originals has announced a another capsule collection with the famed London Fashion Designer, Mary Katrantzou, set to hit stores this November. Katrantzou is best known for her eye popping use of colour and digital kaleidoscope-esq patterns which we're hoping will translate into the exclusive sporty apparel and footwear line.

photo via Alexander Wang

Alexander Wang x H&M
This highly anticipated collection is definitely one to mark your calendars for. H&M's latest designer collaboration was announced just two weeks ago via Wang's Instagram account drawing in over 11K in likes. The collection which will include men's and women's clothing as well as accessories is set to launch in early November and will be available in over 250 H&M stores worldwide. According to Wang, H&M is very open to "pushing boundaries" so we can't wait to see what the two masterminds come up with!

May 1, 2014

Unstoppable, Spotlight on China

China is making big moves and by the end of the year, will surpass the USA as the largest e-commerce market in the world. With an expected worth of $541 billion by 2015, 49% of China's population purchased online last year and by 2017, this figure is projected to rise to an unprecedented 71%.

photo via

Their e-commerce market is predominantly younger than 30, affluent, and shopping via mobile devices. Instead of visiting brand's official websites, the Chinese tend to search social media as well as five of the country's most popular websites like Not to mention, they are swapping cash for virtual forms of payment like debit and credit cards faster than any other country worldwide.

photo via WWD

News of Alibaba's IPO has been all over the internet and it's eventual expansion into the US is going to drastically shake up the online marketplace, affecting everyone from Amazon to eBay to Netflix, Twitter and even Google. The Chinese web giant connects consumers with brands and operates much like that of Amazon, but is two to three times larger and offers everything from e-commerce to social media, online streaming, online payment systems, and recently invested in China's largest internet television company, Youku Todou Inc as well as Chinese department store operator, Intime Retail. The iconic label Burberry is the first luxury retailer to open a virtual storefront on the site as the British brand continues its efforts into the Chinese market and we're expecting many others to follow suit.

And Gap is one of them as they further outline plans to triple their business in China. The retailer already has a total of 83 shops residing in Mainland China, 15 of them outlets, with an expected 30 more to open this year. Additionally, they have launched a physical Old Navy store in Shanghai as well as a digital storefront on none other than Alibaba's platform.

photo via WWD

It may not be know for its sunshine but Chengdu is quickly becoming a retail hub, specifically for high-end luxury brands. Located in Southwest China and with a population of 14 million, this city has 31 retail projects in the making as well as a new high-end megamall with tenants that include Gucci, Cartier and Hermés. In 2012, Forbes predicted Chengdu as the fastest growing city in China over the coming decade and with the growing middle class snatching up entry level luxury products like makeup and accessories, this could just be the beginning.

photo via The Economist

While many retailers have yet to expand beyond Shanghai and Beijing, this will soon change as China's global presence strengthens and brands feel more confident in the level of demand in more of the remote parts of the country. Right now, the spotlight is on China – development of new cities, growing middle class, and growth in e-commerce and online shopping – making the fusion between the east and the west imperative to the world economy. 
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