THE MONC BLOG
Welcome to The MONC Blog, our Journal on all things that are happening and inspiring us in the MONC studio.
Beth approached us about the concept of Studio B in June; a curated selection of brands which present high quality, ethically produced items collated on one platform. With first hand experience working with Mulberry, Matches Fashion and Anya Hindmarsh, Bethany has turned her focus to present a selection of brands to customer's looking for products of substance and longevity. Since launch in September, Studio B has been building a reputation for its playful yet curated selection of niche brands. We sat down with Bethany to find out more about her idea of the perfect marketplace.
Kreuzberg’s bohemian culture has been on the rise in the last 20 to 30 years, the underground music scene influencing nightlife and audio around the world, and the bohemian style of fashion has played a part in changing catwalks across the industry. More recently a renaissance of craft and young artisans has made Kreuzberg the centre for well made locally sourced goods in Berlin. By young artisans I don't mean young in age, but young in development. In this Journal post we explore a long standing resident of Kreuzberg, who has recently moved away from a commercial 2D discipline of design to a more hand on approach to ceramics, and influencing local residents to follow his journey.
At MONC our core values are based on designing high quality items that last, whilst creating a personality within each product. I know – ‘a personality within a product?’ – it sounds like crazy talk. But when you buy something, how often do you know what it’s made of, where it’s come from, and who’s made it?...Exactly.
For our first collection for Spring Summer 2017, we took inspiration from creative districts from around Europe, where local designers and artisans are returning to the use of high quality materials, traditional techniques and unique processes to make products that last. We travelled from London to Stockholm to learn more about a neighbourhood that’s getting noticed for its flawless design culture – Södermalm.
As a British Sunglasses brand the Winter Months can be a bit scarce of sunny days...but a little down-time from the lack of Sun gives us an excuse to gather our thoughts, reflect on the months after our launch in August and the development of the brand going forward. We thought we'd highlight some of our favourite moments of 2016 and give an insight into our ambitions and journey going into 2017.
Revealing our journey was a natural beginning for Monc, as we wanted to show how each of our products are designed, sourced and crafted to bring items that are truly genuine. For us, this is the most exciting part of a complex and intricate design process, which is tailored by our distinct design values. Each value builds the lifestyle of what we believe in as designers, and is reflected in every product that we create.
In the build up to our launch we've been through intense designing, searching and testing so we could find the best craftsmen who help us in our vision to create truly artisanal and traditionally made frames. After finding the perfect match through long and agonising searching, each element of the MoNC experience followed down this same path.
The most thrilling part of the design process is not just a finished item at the end of the recycled development and testing process; it’s the experiences leading up to that. It’s what has inspired each element of the design, how concepts have formed through learning and experience. This is why MONC started - we have always wanted to create products that have a transparent and true story, with the hope that the things we design and make express a unique identity, that people are proud to be part of.
Over the last 18 months I have been searching for a milestone that I set myself at the beginning of this journey - to create a durable and fashionable product out of the best materials, innovative components, and made by the best people for the job. Naturally as a small studio, the costs for us were a big factor in the beginning. There is no question that we're all trying to save a quick penny here and there. But as I thought more and more about the quality vs. price conundrum I learnt (what may seem blindly obvious to most of us) that quality comes at a price. I realised I had to listen to what I've learnt as a designer from the very beginning; It takes trial and error, investigation, and rounds of development to make the best products for anyone to use or wear.