Mass Luciano (MASS) has consistently remained stable over the last two years not allowing any distractions from their core vision. This Hong Kong-based brand is sure to make traction in the U.S. in no time.
Happy two year anniversary! How does that feel?
Thank you, it feels great! My partner and I started the brand as a way to collaborate creatively two years ago, and it’s very satisfying to see it grow each season.
What have you learned over the past two years?
We’ve learned how to listen and filter other people’s comments, suggestions and advise. Everybody has an opinion on what we should design and how we should do certain things, but at the end of the day, it needs to feel right and fit in with our vision. We love creating statement pieces that are casual without being dressed down. Each style has a visual impact and stands out with a graphic sensibility that’s structured and enhances the male form. Our customers keep asking for more, and we enjoy hearing from them.
Who is your client?
The MASS man is confident, bold and has a young attitude – he’s always effortlessly dressed and isn’t afraid to stand out.
Have you been a designer most of your life?
Yes – I studied fashion design at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles over 16 years ago and started work at Guess Jeans straight after. I’ve had the opportunity to work with companies in Los Angeles, Italy and Hong Kong designing womenswear, menswear and even for kids. It’s what I’ve always wanted to do.
Where do you get inspiration when preparing for a collection?
From architecture and sports. I’m fascinated with structure and form, function and practicality… architecture and sports have that in common.
Where did you grow up?
I’m an Army brat, so my family moved a lot when I was a kid. My best memories were growing up in Fort Hood, Texas, and Nuremberg, Germany. We moved to Puerto Rico when I was 12 and I went to high school and college there before moving to Los Angeles. Now I live in Hong Kong and have called it home for the last five or 6 years.
Explain how your MASS for Lane Crawford collection came into existence.
We entered Lane Crawford’s ‘The Next New 2016’ competition and won best new menswear brand. Up until that moment, our styles were only available online on our website. We designed an exclusive collection for Lane Crawford allowing our customers to enjoy a luxury retail experience. It’s been a great opportunity, and we’ve just finished our second collection for them.
Being based in Hong Kong, do you find it challenging to tap into the U.S. market?
A considerable part of our business comes from the USA. We sell the collection online, and since online has no borders, geography hasn’t been a problem for us. Our customer base is very international. We have orders that come from all over the globe – from the USA, the UK, Spain, South Africa, Australia, Dubai, Australia, China. It is very international. Plus we provide free shipping on all orders and have a hassle free returns and exchange policy which makes shopping with us pretty easy.
Do you have plans to grow your retail distribution in the U.S.?
Yes! We’re currently stocked at Universal Body in Los Angeles and are looking to expand to New York and Miami in 2018.
What do you know now that you wish you knew two years ago?
First of all, say goodbye to a traditional Monday to Friday 9 to 5 work schedule. That’s the first thing to go out the window. Your personal and work life are continually overlapping as there is always something that needs to get done, or drawn up, or posted. It can be hard to separate the two, especially in the early days when you are setting up, but you need to make sure your private life does not suffer. Also, because we’re a small company, you have to be prepared to do things that usually would not be within your scope or remit and learn new things quickly.
Finally, and most importantly, don’t sweat the little things – remember that everything happens for a reason.
“When you don’t dress like everybody else, you don’t have to think like everybody else.” – Iris Apfel