Saturday, September 16, 2017

meet Michael Y of MARCUSE



Just as it must be cocktail time somewhere, the same might be said of summer or beach season. Those of us in the Northern Hemisphere are winding down from a pretty good beach filled summer while those of us in Southern Hemisphere are gearing up for the coming sand and surf season. In a final scenario there might be those of us who are looking ahead to the next warm weather getaway on some tropical island. 
click image to enlarge



Keeping all this in mind, I turn your attention to Marcuse. If you’ve not heard of the brand then allow me to introduce you to a burgeoning swimwear brand. Its designer is from down under and headquartered in Sydney,  founded and designed by and Michael Y ( he likes his anonymity). Its safe to say that  there is all kinds of sexiness coming from this brand whether you are about to hit Bondi Beach, Blacks Beach or the beaches of Bali.
click image to enlarge



So now in his own words let Michael speak about his brand and himself…. 
click image to enlarge



Jeffrey Felner: Can you give us a brief history of you and your brand?

Michael Y: I graduated from fashion design college in Sydney, Australia. After working in the fashion industry for a few years I decided to work on my own and in 2010 started MARCUSE, a designer men’s swimwear and underwear label. Actually, creating MARCUSE seemed the natural thing to do after spending many summers at Bondi beach and feeling that there was a gap in this type of market. 

Our goal has always been the same, which is to create swimwear that makes you feel great and look sexy.  We started off with swimwear, and then 2 years later came the underwear line, and most recently men’s sporty beach apparel in 2014. Time flies and in May it will be our seventh year.
click image to enlarge
click image to enlarge
  


Jeffrey Felner: Do you have any plans for further brand extensions... why and what would they be?

Michael Y: We’re always on the look-out for any opportunities for the brand to grow and develop. But, we want the expansion to make sense, be sustainable and in line with our way of thinking – which is trying retain some exclusivity to the brand. We don’t mind being a smaller, ‘private’ label – for now. We don’t wholesale MARCUSE to too many websites or any department stores. We’re sold at selected stores in 12 different countries, such as Aussie boys in Sydney, Les Dessous d'Apollon in France and Trim Pittsburgh in the U.S.  – And naturally through Marcuse.com.

I think no brand can afford to remain stagnant, plus it doesn’t fit with creativity and survival to do so. Again, if it makes sense we may offer new lines, product improvement [90% of our swimwear is now made using quality Italian fabric]; enter new markets or distribution channels. Most recently, we’ve thought there’s been opportunity for us to work on more underwear products and we’re very excited about the upcoming launch of MARCUSE’s new underwear collection in the second half of this year. 
click image to enlarge
click image to enlarge



Jeffrey Felner: You have a very specific target audience so let’s speak to that topic ... why? Do you plan on expand that base audience? And what do you believe you bring to the table when it comes to swimwear and underwear?

Michael Y: Actually, we know we have a diverse mix of customers, which we think is a great thing. But, there’s something our customers all share in common – they want to look great, feel sexy and have fun! We try to appeal to those that want to look great, stand out from the crowd and get the extra confidence to do so by wearing MARCUSE.  

This is part of what I think MARCUSE offers.  For me, I felt that most of the swimwear labels out there were focused on looks for sports and recreation. I wanted to introduce more of an element of fashion, design and creativity which in turn creates uniqueness.   This is something we feel sets MARCUSE apart and at which we work at, season after season. 
click image to enlarge
click image to enlarge




Jeffrey Felner: If you could choose any collaboration with another brand or designer, who and what would it be and why?

Michael Y: The late Gianni Versace – we love him for his creative (sometimes crazy) designs and for having not been afraid of using colour in his collections. It would have been amazing to work with such legend.  
click image to enlarge
click image to enlarge
 


Jeffrey Felner: If you could invite any 5 people to dinner who would they be and why?

Michael Y: Elton John – every dinner party needs a funny queen

The late Tina Chow – who will always remain an icon in my eyes

BeyoncĂ© – who else?

Queen Elizabeth – she always comes across as a lovely, humble lady with a sense of wit too

Ryan Reynolds – personal reasons… 
click image to enlarge