Of all the places to establish the seeds of a booming fashion business, Alyce Tran and Tania Liu were working on an off-shore gas deal when they decided to join forces and make a foray into what was quickly becoming a very crowded fashion blogging space.
It was 2011, and lawyer and Sydney-based Alyce had been transferred to Perth to work on the deal. It would be a post that would change the course of both women’s career paths, make them some serious coin along the way and one that would quickly demand the attention of those within an already tightly exclusive fashion industry.
You may not know Alyce or Tania on a name or face basis, but you certainly know their product. That initial meeting as lawyers in 2011 was the beginning of the juggernaut that has grown to be The Daily Edited – a brand that sells a vast array of monogrammed leather accessories.
Some five or six years later, what was once a small-time blog is now a business worth more than $15 million and home to more than 100 employees.
When I chat to 30-year-old Alyce ahead of their expansion into the US through some pop-up stores in Saks Fifth Avenue, New York (no less), she’s surprisingly casual and her entire demeanor a tad self-deprecating considering the company’s staggering recent growth.
Perhaps most interesting is the way Alyce shrugs off questions of deliberate social media strategy and remarkable early revenue – cash flow she calls “hilarious” – as if the business fell together thanks to a couple of brushstrokes of good luck. At odds with that candour, however, are stories Alyce tells of gob-stoppingly hard work, a critical eye for both business and fashion and a real passion for making sure the consumer is getting exactly what they paid for.
Make no mistake – The Daily Edited (TDE) was not the baby of luck or accidentally clever business decisions. The demand for their product may have been unprecedented, but the ability of both women to grow the business not so much.
After all, personalised leather goods wasn't even their first idea. It was their third.
"[Tania] was a couple of years more senior than me but she always wore really cool clothes to work and we had this mutual interested in fashion, so she took me around to the cool places in Perth to buy stuff," Alyce recalls.
This mutual interest in fashion led to the birth of the their blog. A year later, by the time Alyce had returned to Sydney in 2012, the duo had launched their own fashion line, aptly titled The Daily Edited. The plan was to share a new outfit on their blog every day and sell the pieces.
"We tried to do [the fashion label] for a while, but really it was just our friends buying it. It was nice getting a bit of press and having a creative project on the side was a great thing," she says.