Margaret Williamson Bechtold
consultant| stylist| strategist| futurist
_Independent Creative Consultant
Austin & NYC, 2.5 years | Jan 2016—now
Bolstering startups and disruptors through creative strategy and storytelling. Delivering tailored trend forecasting, objective advisement and hands-on brand guidance that spans product, presence and position - from market research and opportunity analysis to creative direction for packaging, presentation and experiences. Custom content creation provided through concept design, art direction, styling and writing. Servicing clients in lifestyle, hospitality and tech on a project and retainer basis.
Client queries explored: How can we create a hospitality property that instills a sense of belonging in a city like New York? How could intuitive home tech systems help Airbnb owners be better hosts? How can a fashion brand operate outside of the wasteful retail landscape? How can we translate the Austin music scene into a virtual reality content? Where should a major car brand look for inspiration and innovation?
_Concept Director @ TOBE
NYC, 5.5 years | Jan 2012—June 2017
Spearheaded a team of trend forecasters, creative strategists and graphic designers in imagining thoughtful, creative, impactful business initiatives for major players in the fashion, beauty, food and beverage, hospitality, entertainment, finance and real estate sectors. Published monthly trend analysis journals and daily website and email newsletter content forecasting far-reaching cultural and consumer movements for subscribers. Developed and delivered dynamic presentations to C- suite executives and global heads of business. Strengthened visionary, management, strategy, editing, writing and client relationship muscles.
Hired as Associate Editor (2012), promoted to Editor (2013) and Senior Editor (2014) before becoming Concept Director (2015). Managed team remotely from Austin January 2016 to June 2017.
_Freelance Fashion Editor @ beso.com
NYC, 6 months | Aug—Dec 2011
Contributed curated shopping roundups to the online shopping aggregator on a biweekly basis, adding an editorial element to the platform.
_Fashion Market Assistant @ Lucky Magazine
NYC, 3.5 years | Aug 2008—Dec 2011
Promoted through multiple positions in the magazine’s editorial department:
Lucky Fashion Market Assistant (2011)—Executed sample coordination for top Lucky fashion directors and editors. Maintained a book of brand relationships for photoshoot sample sourcing. Performed beyond the responsibilities of the role, regularly styling branded videos and national television segments and contributing written and visual content to the publication’s website, Luckymag.com.
Assistant to the Creative Director (2010)—Served as personal assistant to and styling associate for the magazine's founding creative director, Andrea Linett.
Lucky Fashion Assistant (2009)—Managed incoming and outgoing fashion samples. Oversaw a team of staff assistants, freelancers and interns. Liaised with stylists and studios to ensure the timely delivery and return of designer goods.
Lucky Fashion Week Coordinator (2008)—Coordinated the hourly Fashion Week agendas for a team of 25 editors for all New York, London, Milan and Paris events and appointments, bringing order and ease to their otherwise over-scheduled month.
_Styling @ NYLON magazine NYC | Summer 2008
_Visual displays @ Anthropologie NYC | Summer 2007
_Design and production @ Etcetera NYC | Summer 2007
_Retail operations @ Marimekko Oxford, MS | Spring 2006
_University of Mississippi
2008 | GPA 4.0 | Summa Cum Laude
Bachelor’s of Science in Family and Consumer Sciences
Curated and coordinated an inspiration itinerary surrounding NYC’s best new design properties for BMW’s MINI head designer to explore with members of the press.
Conducted primary market research for tech startup Orient, including surveys and interviews. Assessed the competitive landscape, uncovered untapped potential, and recommended methods of distinction to inform the development of its debut smart home system.
Evaluated target markets, identified idle opportunities and provided design and positioning feedback based on current and future trends for the micro-housing company Kasita, a top brand launch at SXSW 2017.
Partnered with High Court’s founders to plan and execute a pop- up experience in Manhattan that successfully gained proof of concept, drove early membership, generated positive press, attracted key investors, and provided a forum in which to workshop the offering of the forthcoming lifestyle brand (a hospitality/fitness membership club, opening 2019).
For sustainable womenswear brand Being Apparel’s third collection: Performed collection reviews and product edits; lead campaign shoot via art direction, staffing, casting and styling; designed lookbook and linesheet layouts; wrote brand and product descriptions, named items; established blueprints for stockist and consumer outreach.
Achieved as Concept Director for New York-based idea agency TOBE:
Steered a long-lead whisper campaign building up to a film release starting three years in the advance for DreamWorks Animation.
Explored the future of food for Campbell’s Soup Company. Inspired physical and digital marketing initiatives for Sephora.
Led consumer connections projects and relevant rebrands for A&E Networks.
Energized the North American human resources executives at Louis Vuitton and Donna Karan to recruit, hire, promote and manage their next generation of leadership with culture- improving impact and relevance.
Provided fashion direction and product planning for luxury department stores (including Bloomingdales, Neiman Marcus in America, KaDeWe in Berlin and El Palacio de Hierro in Mexico) and mass market stalwarts (including Target and Kohl’s).
Trends identified early (an edited selection): Athleisure’s overtaking (2012); The “BFF” marketing tone (2013); The post- gender conversation (2014); Millennial parenting implications (2014); The rise and impact of Feminism’s fourth wave (2015).
EDITORIAL | Contributor, Cake, Billy, Pansy, Satellite Journal, Refigural, No Substance, Splendor, Superhero, TEETH, Just, Damaged, Kaltblut, Vulkan, NR, Ladygunn, Dew.
VIDEO | Leon Bridges (Beyond, 2018), Mercedes-Benz #WeWonder Campaign (2018), Spark for Autism (2018), Gregg Allman (Song for Adam, 2017), Google x Austin City Limits (VR content, 2017), Capyac (Bubblegum, 2017), My Jerusalem (No One..., 2016), The Wild Now (Run for Your Life, 2016), Wild Child (Break Bones, 2016), The Today Show (2010-2011).