Each month we take a look at an exciting and innovative brand taking the fashion world by storm in our regular #TheBrand feature. This time, to officially celebrate summer dress season, we turn to Australian brand Aje, a brand best known for their colorful and voluminous dresses.
“When we met in 2008, there was a clear distinction in Australia about how people dressed for their weekends on the beach and in their urban lifestyle,” co-founder Adrian Norris tells me. tells how he and his business partner Edwina Forest first appeared. with label idea. “We wanted to offer a modern approach and bridge that gap between the beach and the city.”
With such a clear focus on trying to fit into a gap that existed specifically in Australia, designers have long kept their local approach, only trying to capture the global market relatively recently.
“Taking the time to grow the business over a period of 15 years has been a defining endeavor for us,” says Norris. “Consolidating local brand presence with a strong product offering and focusing on business priorities before expanding internationally has contributed to our continued evolution and maturity.”
The designers perfected the unique aesthetic for which they would become known – structural silhouettes, hand-painted prints and bold colors. “We wanted Aje to feel effortlessly cool, reflecting tough femininity and raw beauty,” Forest said. “15 years later, it has become our design signature.”
And, although Aje is now a global success story, her brand aesthetic and the collections created today are still very much influenced by her roots, says Forest.
“As a brand that is hugely proud to be Australian, we are constantly looking ‘inside’ of this incredible landscape and life that has formed our unique design code. One of strength, freedom and adventure Australian style is individual, confident and streamlined.
“Australians have the freedom to approach style with an unconventional lens and a confident attitude,” adds Norris. “Our isolation is our greatest asset – we have a distinct strength and enjoy a relaxed way of life.”
This sense of casual elegance is what makes Aje pieces so appealing. While many styles are chunky and colorful – and wouldn’t look out of place at a wedding – they’re designed to be comfortable and effortless, easy to dress up or down, tossed with flats or paired with heels, and worn everywhere from the beach to the office or for parties.
Another thing Aje dresses stand for? Joy.
We’ve seen this become more prominent in fashion in recent years, particularly post-lockdown – and our desire to embrace fun, color and happiness in our wardrobes makes investing in a brand like Aje hugely appealing , which the founders experienced firsthand.
“We’ve seen such a positive response from customers returning to stores, full of energy and excited to dress up,” Norris says of the post-pandemic world. “We have always naturally reflected joy and clever playfulness in our designs, hoping to uplift and inspire our customers.”
“They say fashion is a reflection of the times, and never before have we seen that reflected so optimistically in our interactions with the Aje community,” adds Forest.
After the tough few years we’ve all been through, there’s never been a better time to stock your closet with easy-to-wear, colorful, and joy-inducing clothes. Thank goodness then for brands like Aje.
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