April 20, 2014

Trend Spotting: Pre-Orders for Independent Brands

A major trend in independent brands these days: pre-ordering. Traditionally speaking, fashion is something most consumers purchase long after it’s been conceived of by the designer, shown on the runway, then produced and shipped to retail outlets. These days independent brands are trying a different tactic, and it’s one that I wouldn’t be surprised to see continue for a long time to come. Instead of producing clothing and accessories in the hopes that consumers will buy them during the upcoming season, prominent retailers of independent brands are offering shoppers the chance to pre-order looks.

Two of the most notable companies doing this these days are Moxsie and Modcloth. Both based in the Bay Area (a testament to the region’s innovation in the area of fashion and tech if ever there was one), each has a different way of doing this. Moxsie offers Moxsie First, which allows members the option to pre-order from yet-to-ship collections from independent designers. At Modcloth, shoppers can currently pre-order items from the BB Dakota holiday collection (see the Coolest Girl in School jeans above). Reserve the pieces you want to buy, and they’ll ship out once the collection becomes available.

But these companies are not the only ones trying this approach. Smaller brands such as The Brooklyn Circus are getting into the game. The hip men’s label is offering pre-orders on its holiday Varsity Collection. Order now, and you’ll get your jacket before it even becomes available in the label’s stores.

For independent companies, the pre-order trend seems like a win-win – customers get something they covet before the masses do, and the designers aren’t left with excessive inventory.

I’ll be watching this trend and hope to see it continue among independent brands. It’s not only fun for the shopper, but more efficient and environmentally-savvy, too.

Photography courtesy of ModCloth

An Indie Take on Private Online Sales: Moxsie First

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Into the world of members-only online sample sales comes a fresh idea from Bay Area-based company Moxsie, an online retailer that sells independent apparel and accessories brands for men and women. Instead of offering past season merchandise at a discount, the Moxsie First shopping site launched earlier this week allows indie fashion fans to pre-order collections from independent labels.

Sure, you’re not going to find super cheap bargains on merchandise, as the apparel and accessories sold through Moxsie First haven’t even arrived in stores yet, but the new feature means diehard independent fashion fans can scoop up items such as the polka dot romper by New York-based Dolce Vita shown above before anyone else has a chance to purchase it. Judging by items featured during the debut week of the site, you’ll typically have to wait four or five weeks from the time of purchase before you’ll receive merch.

More San Francisco fashion news

Good Looks: We’ve Got it Made

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Don’t you love it when you feel like you’ve got it made? In that spirit, we’ve got all eyes on a certain local jewelry company for the latest in our ongoing San Francisco Style Series.

For this original photo shoot (you won’t see it anywhere other than SF Indie Fashion), photographer and stylist Erin Haight dolled up model Samara in bling from designers Abigail Rivamonte and Debbie Sheen’s Made Jewelry.

We love these pieces for their ability to be versatile, yet oh-so-far from boring.

You’ll find the latest from Made Jewelry available online at Moxsie, as well as in local shops such as Acrimony and Isso. Looking for a specific piece? You can always email info (at) madejewelry (dot) com to order.

Styling and photography by Erin Haight; photo editing by David Cammack; Model, Samara.

More of the San Francisco style series

Ladylike + Adapt Hoodie Release

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You can be ladylike and still get your kicks. Here’s how: tonight at 111 Minna, the lovely women of Ladylike (sister co. to Fatlace) are throwing a soiree that’s one part networking event for independent Bay Area retailers, designers, fashion bloggers, industry insiders and like-minded folks, one part release party for the label’s new hoodie collaboration project with Oakland-based Adapt Clothing and one part sheer excuse to party.

We hear the ladies of Made Jewelry will be in the house with goodies, while the folks from online independent retail shop Moxsie tell us they’re heading there en masse.

To get in on the action, swing by 111 Minna tonight. Hoodie release unleashed at 9pm.

More upcoming fashion happenings

News: New Home for Acrimony, Deals, Vintage and More Vintage

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Sunday night music festival festivities are not conducive to Monday feats of motivational magic, especially when it is raining. In other news…

Leather cuffs and hand-printed leather belts in Project TransAction’s etsy shop are now 20 to 30 percent off through Oct. 22.

SFist’s Bag Lady goes to Shotwell.

Acrimony has a new home in Hayes Valley.

AliceandIsa is offering two noteworthy perks right now. Through the end of October, shop this San Francisco-based online retailer devoted to local designers, and you’ll receive $10 in “holiday credit” for every $100 you spend. From Nov. 27-30 (i.e. the days between Black Friday and Cyber Monday), you can redeem the credit towards purchases on the site – just in time for holiday gift-buying. Also, through Dec. 15, for every pair of Jennifer Tuton Fleur de Lys earrings sold, AliceandIsa will donate 10 percent to San Francisco-based non-profit FortheBayou.org in support of its efforts to save wetlands surrounding New Orleans.

In need of a new fall workout routine? We hear that The Dailey Method is now offering a $199-per-month promotional rate for unlimited classes good at its locations in Cow Hollow, Rincon Center, Corte Madera and Burlingame when you make a six-month commitment.

The Brooklyn Circus is turning heads this week with its newly-arrived supply of vintage deadstock eyewear.

Bay Area-based online retailer and indie fashion devotee Moxsie recently added an Eco Shop to its ever-growing site. In it, you’ll find eco-minded apparel and accessories by independent labels such as Alchemy Goods, fiftyseven-thirtythree, Ach Ach Liebling and Sust.

Anica has new vintage in stock.

Bell Jar has new wearables by Eskell.

SFBayStyle reports that 50+ vintage vendors will descend upon Alameda this weekend for the Vintage Clothing and Style Festival.

Nasty Gal is stoking our envy with its recently-arrived velvet power-shoulder blazer.

More San Francisco fashion news….