MacGregor Golf is a 100 year old golf company, one with a new CEO. Michael J. Setola shares with us his vision and strategy for keeping the innovative brand strong.
NATALIA: Please give folks a bit of insight as to what your role entails.
Michael: As CEO of MacGregor, my primary role is to manage the investments and direction of the company. As it relates to product, inventory is our largest investment, so I keep a keen eye on product and product development.
NATALIA: How did you first become interested in fashion?
Michael: Funny story, but my first job was with Hanes Underwear. I was selling boxers and white briefs. Suddenly for the first time, colored underwear came on the scene and I saw the effect of fashion on something as simple as underwear. I was hooked on the excitement of newness and the effect great product has on business.
NATALIA: How would you define good innovation?
Michael: Good innovation is the combo of design, merchandising and sell through to the consumer. It needs to be relevant as truly new, but have meaning to the consumer.
NATALIA: Is innovation important to you? MacGregor?
Michael: At both the Greg Norman collection and in our MacGregor Golf Club companies, innovation is what separates us from the field.
NATALIA: How is innovation realized in your business?
Michael: Design, product development, technical services and production all must work together to bring innovation to the market in sync.
NATALIA: Any challenges or successes you have had bringing innovative design to market?
Michael: There are always challenges in getting all these components firing at the same time. Often, one area is ahead or behind in the ability to deliver innovation, so a project may be delayed.
NATALIA: What are some of the current innovation projects you are working on?
Michael: In apparel, climate controlled fabrics are becoming more important for the active golfer. Body temperature regulating developments are in our market and improvements are in the works. In golf clubs, we have a new metal that we are introducing to the clubface for game improvement.
NATALIA: Do you feel technology in fashion is just a trend?
Michael: Everything is a trend. It’s just about how long it stays with us. Technology will be with us for a long time, the consumer likes it.
NATALIA: In a few words please share with us your vision for the future.
Michael: Companies that innovate and develop consumer centric products will excel even more in the future. The combination of economic challenges and modern expectations will raise the bar for products to succeed.
Posted in Apparel, Brands, Celebrity, Cool, Creativity, Customers, Design, Eco-Friendly, Fashion, Fashion Design, Golf, Innovation, Innovative, Luxury, Menswear, Natalia, Natalia Allen, Performance Gear, Shopping, Technology
Tagged Design, Design Futurist, Golf, Innovation, MacGregor, Natalia, Natalia Allen, Style, Technology
New York held its new annual Digital Downtown, a consumer technology showcase at the World Financial Center Winter Garden this past weekend. It featured the latest innovative trends on consumer electronics, from high definition televisions, mobile devices, audio, to energy saving and gaming devices.
Flat screen HDTV’s dominated the majority of the atrium with the new ultra thin 1.5 inch Hitachi standing out. The images were so clear, consumers stood for minutes admiring the image quality. But, Roland, the world’s leading manufacturer of electronic musical instruments had the most amazing demonstrations of what the future brings. One demonstration that stood out is known as “the parent’s dream” the silent drum set made of rubber, is attached to headphones that allow each hit, tap, snare to be translated to the original instrumental sound. Another demonstration that stood out was the double keyboard with a microphone attachment that allowed you to sing into the microphone out of tune as it translates your tone perfectly into pitch. The instrument allowed the demonstrator to sing orchestral back up to Mariah Carey’s a cappella. With this new product soon to be in consumer hands, can anyone be the next Mariah Carey?
Technology is redefining our future and the way we communicate. New York, now being apart of the CEA (Consumer Electronics Association) can now spread the innovative developments through its global entertainment and media. HANNA
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Tagged Design, Design Futurist, Innovation, Mobile Software, Natalia, Technology
The Renegade Craft Fair was held in Brooklyn this past weekend, showcasing the talents of various arts-and-crafts vendors, and promoting the increasingly popular form of “do-it-yourself” design. Fashion companies, such as Threadless (http://threadless.com) and Urban Tailor (http://urbantailor.com) are jumping on the DIY bandwagon by allowing customers to design their own garments or create their own graphic tees online. User-friendly web pages allow customers to click and create customized clothing based on provided styles and textiles. With the help of Internet technology, customers can instantly create and preview their own customized clothing.
Sneaker goliath, Nike, takes this trend one step further with their latest creation: Nike PhotoID. Combining mobile technology with the DIY trend, Nike PhotoID allows fans to create sneakers based on snapshots taken by their cell phones. The new program analyzes dominant colors in the photograph and then transfers those colors into a sneaker template. An image of the shoe is sent back to the mobile phone, and users have the option to save it as a wallpaper or order the actual footwear. The customized color-ways are available on Nike’s classic 1985 Dunk high-top basketball sneakers. Currently, Nike PhotoID is only available in Europe. WU
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Tagged Art, Culture, Design, Fashion, Innovation, Luxury, Natalia, Style, Technology
Most automobiles are fabricated in hard plastic, glass and metal, requiring many parts and joints. The team at BMW has rethought this approach and presented a seamless skin concept. The outcome is both ergonomic and beautiful.
Design Futurist believes the best innovation not only makes objects more beautiful, it makes them more functional. General complaints from drivers have little to do with the surface and everything to do with poor durability, vulnerable electrical systems and complicated repairs.
Seamless design can mean more graceful lines, simpler parts, and fluid transitions. We hope BMW, extends this thought process to the internal design of future cars. NATALIA
Posted in BMW, Brands, Creativity, Customers, Design, Fashion, Fashion Design, Future Cars, Innovation, Innovative, Luxury, Natalia, Shopping, Technology, Transportation, Uncategorized
Tagged Design, Design Futurist, Fashion, Innovation, Natalia, Style, Technology
In 2007, tech giant Google caused quite a stir by announcing the development of a new open-source software for mobile devices, called Android. Google’s new project was dubbed the gPhone and has been eagerly anticipated as a better alternative to Apple’s iPhone.
However, Google does not actually intend on releasing an exclusive gPhone. Instead, they are offering their new Android software to existing cell phone companies, such as Samsung (picture above). Google hopes to compete against software companies that utilize Microsoft and Macintosh operating systems, the predominant choice for mobile devices. Android powered phones will run on 3G wireless networks, which allow for high-speed internet connections. They will be seamlessly integrated with Google’s computer-based communication services, and offer GPS and a seamless interface. Most importantly, they will be affordable, and available outside of the US.
This week, Apple officially unveiled its own new iPhone, which has all the features that Google advertises for Android. The iPhone 3G is also fast, features GPS, a new MobileMe system, is relatively affordable, and will be available in over 70 countries.
Google started with a great concept, but Apple beat them to the execution. Currently, Android powered phones are in the works for 2009, while Apple’s new iPhone will be available in stores July 11th. WU
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Tagged Android, Apple, Design, Futurist, Google, gPhone, iPhone, Mobile Software, Natalia, Natalia Allen, Style, Technology
Dior’s new line of luxury will be put to the test when they follow along with Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Versace, and Prada, in fusing the ubiquitous cell phone with an exclusive luxury brand.
Does a newly diamond-studded alligator casing capture the idea of luxury? Cell phones are a mainstream item that everyone owns. Whether or not it is encased in diamonds or uses alligator skin, they all have the same functionality.
Dior will maintain exclusivity by selling the cell phones at a higher price than its competitors. The company expects the phones to sell best in brand hungry Russia and China. The starting price is $5,100, priced to rival Nokia’s Vertu phone.
Dior is expecting to sell between 30,000 to 60,000 units within the next year; however, competing designer luxury brands sold around 500,000 units. We found that many thought the Dior design resembles floor tiles.
There is a new market being created, one very similar to the high-end industry of sunglasses and handbags. Which ubiquitous item will be next in-line for a brand upgrade. HANNA
Posted in Accessories, Advertising, Brands, Camera Phones, cell phones, Computers, Creativity, Customers, Design, Diamonds, Fashion, Fashion Design, Handbags, Innovation, Innovative, Jewels, Luxury, mobile phones, Natalia, Natalia Allen, Technology, The Future of Fashion
Tagged Design, Design Futurist, Fashion, Innovation, Luxury, Natalia, Natalia Allen, Technology
Interview with Simon Collins, Chair of Parsons School of Fashion at The New School on: Carving a Path to Sustainability.
NATALIA: How did you first become interested in fashion?
SIMON: As a teenager it became obvious to me that girls liked boys who looked
cool. Hence fashion called to me
NATALIA: Give folks a bit of insight on what exactly your new role entails?
SIMON: I look after our BFA, MFA and AAS (Fashion) courses, for the first time
they all come together as the School of Fashion. I am charged with
creating links between Parsons and the fashion industry in new and
innovative ways. More than providing interns we will be looking for ways
to provide information and creative thinking – particularly in the
sustainable arena where industry is not yet at the forefront.
NATALIA: Is sustainability important to you. Why?
SIMON: Sustainability is important to me, just as it should be to everyone.
Frankly it’s hard to see how anyone can genuinely not think
sustainability is important. The earth’s resources aren’t ours to use up
and discard, we all have responsibilities.
NATALIA: How do you envision sustainability influencing fashion?
SIMON: It used to be that being ecologically conscious meant you had to rule
out many things. Now new options are opening up all the time and instead
we have a whole range of new materials and processes that didn’t exist
before. Fashion isn’t going to change any quicker than it ever has, but
it is going to adopt more and more sustainable aspects.
NATALIA: What challenges have you had with sustainable fashion?
SIMON: Mainly with business managers refusing to use anything sustainable if
it meant a single extra penny on the price of a product. I could name
NATALIA: What are some of the current sustainable projects you are working on?
SIMON: At Parsons we have our sustainable fingers in many different pies, too
numerous to mention here.
NATALIA: Why do you think sustainable fashion does not get as much attention
as hybrid cars or organic food?
SIMON: Because the ad budgets for those fashion companies using sustainable
products cannot compare to those of the food and auto industries. Until
one of the big fashion corporations decides to actually do the right
thing (rather than just garner PR by talking about it) we will be
reliant on small companies with small budgets.
NATALIA: Where do you see the sustainable fashion in 10 years?
SIMON: I don’t expect to see a revolution. But I do anticipate a slow and
inexorable movement towards sustainability without any design
compromise. Only when it looks the same and costs the same (as
unsustainable) will it truly take off.
Posted in Brands, Creativity, Design, Eco-Friendly, Fashion, Fashion Design, Green, Innovation, Luxury, Natalia, Natalia Allen, politics, Shopping, Simon Collins, Sustainability, Technology, The Future of Fashion, Transportation, Travel
Tagged Design, Design Futurist, Fashion, Innovation, Luxury, Natalia, Natalia Allen, Style, Sustainability, Technology