I always love telling this story because I find so many people can relate to it.
So, let me paint the picture for you. You know when we get ready in the morning, putting an outfit together - is it a pants or skirt day today? Am I feeling a splash of colour or keep it neutral?
The process of putting a complete outfit together and then looking in-front of the mirror & you think to yourself daymn I look good. It instantly ignites a sense of spark and confidence from within you - that feeling of, this is my day and no one is getting in my way; because I look good & I feel good inside.
I started to take note of this feeling & ask myself what in my outfit helps ignite this?
I started to realise that what helped me create the perfect polished look was my handbag. I love my wardrobe staples so every-morning I would reach for a classic black or neutral look but then I would walk to my mums wardrobe. Where I would find a collection of beautiful vintage handbags, I would grab a red or lighter colour to add a pop & boom - my outfit was complete.
I’d look in the mirror and think gosh - I look good & I feel good on the inside. I would walk out of that room with a pep in my step, a spark if you will, that only I created for myself. A sense of inner confidence & empowerment all because of the bag.
Enter: Sage a brand created for the sole purpose of creating statement minimalistic bags for the purpose of empowerment.
What were you doing prior to Sage Avenue?
Straight out of school I jumped into retail, where I spent 3 years being a retail assistant. I then worked for a marketing agency & PR agency, whilst concurrently studying at University. I still study at University, where I actually study a double degree of Commerce and Law. I love to use my University course as an example to anyone that, you can still do whatever you want to do even if you don't traditionally come from that learning background. Try to not let the fact that you may have a smaller amount of experience in this industry compared to someone else, use it to your advantage and be creative in your own way. I never studied arts at high school nor did I study design at Uni but I believe I have a creative side to me and I knew I had that side to me. Its almost not letting yourself be consumed by the thought rather you accept it and say nope I can still do this. Thats all that you really need, believe you can and you are half of the way there (this took such an inspirational turn but I am so here for it haha).
Yet, I still often say - Uni is now my side hustle.
Is there a meaning behind the name Sage Avenue?
Every time I meet someone with the name Sage, I think immediately, "I love this name." I have always simply adored it. So, this was the first name that came to mind when I started to develop the brand. The moment I learned the name's origin, though, was what made it even more beautiful. Sage is frequently known as a herb, but in ancient mythology it always refers to prohepht, a person who bears a store of knowledge and is regarded as enlightened. It also is frequently employed to get rid of negative energy and make room for the positive. I've always known that I wanted to build my business into a safe, welcoming, and positive space where buyers feel like they are purchasing more than just the product. So, for me, there was no better name than Sage; a positive and welcoming brand, thats more than just a bag.
Where does your brand inspiration come from?
I am primarily inspired by vintage and one-off pieces. I have always had a natural attraction to one-of-a-kind items that allow you to express yourself creatively. It is both a work of well-crafted art and historical significance.
Typical day in your life
I always love to start my morning with nature, a walk or coffee in the backyard. I then write my to-do list for the day, because there is nothing more satisfying that crossing of a task from my list.
Then I tackle the day - each day is different but nonetheless it usually consists of
- planning upcoming designs/drops
- strategising on the campaign around the drop
- replying to Instagram messages (one of my all time favourite things to do is chat to our customers)
- Planning the social media feed & usually make some TikToks
I then take myself to some pilates or yoga then come home and get into bed to do more work.
Who is your style icon?
There are quite a few! But - if I had to pick then I would say either Maddie De Maine or Bella Hadid. I find myself leaning towards the more oversize pants and casual yet refined look.
Biggest brand milestone
This year Sage was lucky enough to be included in one of the PayPal Melbourne Fashion Week shows. It was a big milestone for us!!
Favourite piece you've released
This is hard because I truly love them all but the one I wear the most would be our Edition 3, Chestnut Brown handbag.
Advice to someone starting their own business
Just go for it, it sounds cliche and cheesy but I truly believe that.
When establishing a business, we have a tendency to wonder, "What if I fail? What if nobody likes it? I like to deal with that sense of self-doubt or worry by responding “what if?” What if it fails? I will end up gaining so much knowledge from the failure—which might not even be a failure because we often make things more difficult than they need to be—yet it will probably enable me to tackle my next project even more successfully. I would advise the person to accept their fears/worry’s when starting their own business, be comfortable with it & accept that it is only going to help you be a better business person. Really, try to not let it consume you. The only way to get there is by putting yourself in the situation so that's when I say just go for it, because you're going to be better off for it (no matter what).
A quote you live by
Believe you can & you are half of the way there.