>> Summer's obsession with neon brights doesn't seem to be fading before Resort season, based on the collections that have previewed so far. Scuba, too, seems to have taken an early lead — we hear scuba plays a part in Alexander Wang's Resort 2012 collection; Michael Kors just showed neoprene zip dresses; and McQ (which is creative directed by Pina Ferlisi and overseen by Sarah Burton), too, is rife with scuba-inspired minidresses, bodysuits, jackets, and pants for Resort 2012. The collection also introduces McQ's first ever handbag collection — think bright bags in leather, vinyl, denim, and neoprene.
>> Alexander McQueen doesn't plan to show off its full intentions for McQ until February for the Fall 2011 season — when there will be jewelry, bags, and shoes along with the clothes — but it's giving a sneak peek with the Pre-Fall 2011 collection it unveiled today. Now that McQueen has complete control of the brand (which was previously licensed) and a new, devoted creative director — Pina Ferlisi — expect some change.
McQ currently represents about 20 percent of McQueen's business, but Jonathan Akeroyd, the brand's president and CEO, expects it to grow to 35 percent by 2012: “We always felt there was scope to create a brand that was more accessible — and a little more edgy. We’ve got a strong ambition for it.” There will be a push for more accessories and a more casual feel, with prices lowered by 25 percent: think jeans priced at 175 euros ($235), dresses at 200 euros ($270), jackets starting at 300 euros ($405) and printed T-shirts at 70 euros ($95).
E-commerce is expected to launch next year on the McQ website, and in the meantime, a film will debut this week instead of a lookbook, featuring four girls wearing the new Pre-Fall 2011 collection in real-life situations. And "democratic" London and New York Fashion Week events are planned for next Spring, with consumers as well as fashion insiders expected to be involved.
>> Alexander McQueen announced today that it would take full control of its McQ contemporary line as of Fall 2011. Previously, the range was produced under license by Italian company SINV SpA, but the five-year agreement expires after the Spring 2011 line. Pina Ferlisi was named creative director of McQ in June and will continue to design the line under the purview of Sarah Burton. "McQ will become our responsibility alongside the core Alexander McQueen label, allowing us to share ideas and knowledge, expand the business and grow the already iconic brand,” stated Jonathan Akeroyd, president and CEO of Alexander McQueen. “Over the past five years, McQ has established itself internationally with its young, renegade but always signature McQueen style and we are ready to take it to the next stage in its development.” [WWD]
>> New Creative Director Named for McQ —Just days after new Alexander McQueen creative director debuted her first collection for the brand — menswear in Milan — to a generally encouraging response, a new creative director has been named for McQueen's diffusion brand, McQ. Pina Ferlisi, who was most recently creative director at Generra and previously has experience as EVP of design at Gap and creative director at Marc by Marc Jacobs, is filling the role and will reportedly work under Burton. [Vogue UK]