With the rise of the selfie culture (if you didn't post it on Instagram, does it even count?), your phone case has become an important signifier of your personal brand — whether it's on social media or IRL. Celebrities have known this social media branding secret for quite a while now — think: Kylie Jenner's boldly emblazoned cases, or Victoria Beckham's subtle (but no less powerful) initials, and you'll have a pretty good idea of the power of personalising your tech accessories.
Spotting a gap in the market for fun, whimsical, personalised accessories, lawyer-turned-entrepreneur Alyce Tran co-founded Australian brand The Daily Edited to bring monogramming into the modern age. It's definitely not your grandmother's traditional idea of the monogram — The Daily Edited's wide selection of accessories are all customisable (their latest product being a genius cabin luggage that you bring on board flights) in a variety of fonts that are just begging to be Instagrammed. Celebrities from every corner of the world such as Hailey Bieber (née Baldwin), to Aimee Song and E!'s very own Morgan Stewart have fallen for this stylish brand that elevates the humble selfie to a whole other level.
We speak to Tran to find out more about how she got her start in the business, her dream celebrity collaborators, and what's coming up next for The Daily Edited.
E! Asia: What inspired the name of your brand, The Daily Edited?
Alyce Tran (AT): The Daily Edited (TDE) actually started as a blog by myself and my co-founder Tania Liu. We were both working as lawyers and wanted to have something fun to work on and talk about outside of work so we started TDE as a place to post about things we liked in fashion, food, lifestyle (so it was a "daily edit" of things we liked, hence the name). In 2011, we actually launched a clothing line under the name Edited that was sold on TDE, the label didn't quite get any commercial traction, and in 2014 we pivoted into leather accessories.
You were a lawyer before making the leap to become an entrepreneur — what sparked the change?
AT: After releasing our first collection in August 2014 we were sold out in a matter of weeks and the business kept on scaling and we could not see an end in sight of customers. As a result, Tania and I both left our legal careers as TDE had gained commercial traction and was turning a profit so we felt like we had to dedicate our time to the brand to see where we could get it to.
As an entrepreneur, what are some of the lessons that you have learned since starting The Daily Edited?
AT: I guess the lessons I learned purely as an entrepreneur are that you need to be prepared for the unexpected; be prepared to be a role model (for example, I have just gotten used to my team really taking everything I say and do very seriously); and try to execute within a plan.
A core selling point of your brand is personalisation — why do you think it has become so popular?
AT: I think personalisation has always been popular and what we did was to democratise it and make it accessible to a wide base of consumers. I think customers are always seeking out unique products with an interesting point of view and it helps that our product is super functional and easy to add to your everyday life.
We're seeing celebrities opt for personalised pieces now more than ever — do you think personalisation is the new luxury?
AT: I suppose personalisation can be defined in that way. If you have something personalised it does mean to a degree that you have the luxury of time, in that you have the time to consider the product and you're not purchasing purely for utility.
Who would be your dream celebrity collaborator?
AT: Oooh, this is a great question. At the moment, I love Lily-Rose Depp, Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex (obviously this would never happen so it's a dream) and Lauren Santo Domingo.
Who are some of the women you look up to?
AT: I love Emily Weiss (founder of Into The Gloss and Glossier), Katrina Lake (Stitch Fix) and Miuccia Prada, because what she has done is so incredible I can't even deal.
What is the best piece of advice that has ever been given to you?
AT: Be careful when making decisions that are irreversible, as you can never really go back and undo it!
2019 has just gotten underway — could you tell us about any interesting plans for the brand this year?
AT: We do have an interesting campaign coming to life around mid-year, we have a ton of new product (as per usual) and The Daily Edited will be doing something pretty fun at Coachella this year!