When fashion veterans and longtime friends Yijia Wang and Zi Xuan created Advene in 2019, they set out to reinvent sustainable luxury in the accessories sector. Customers back then had to choose between durability, style and price. “That’s when we thought we needed to do something,” Wang says.
With Advene, Wang and Xuan, who are based in New York City, have created a solution: luxury accessories that are carefully designed, made in a sustainable manner and at a reasonable price.
The brand uses only traceable and all-natural materials and develops transparent constructions that eliminate plastic fillers hidden behind the liners. Over time, these plastics deteriorate.
Advene’s first product, the Age bag, is made entirely from food by-products and is 100% traceable. The leathers are produced in a reference tannery of scope C certified by the Leather Working Group. This means that, from rawhide to finished leather, every step of the process meets the highest standards for environmental impact and ethical production.
There are only 13 tanneries in the world certified as such. “Just think about it,” Wang says. “Only 10% of leather made in the United States is traceable. We don’t produce new leathers, it’s all recycled leather.
In addition, the Age lacks plastic filling, which is commonly used to structure the silhouette of bags. Instead, the design ensures that it retains its architectural form. “Even though it is a sculptural three-dimensional shape, we can achieve it without using fillers,” says Wang. “Everything is very soft leather, the weight comes from the material itself.
The Age bag is available in black, cream, storm, lemon and caramel, as well as a hemp version in white with black straps.
Advene’s second design project, the Edge Bag, is a casual yet chic rectangular crossbody bag that fits perfectly under the shoulder. It is available in black, cream, storm, lemon and caramel.
The Trench Tote, the third and final product of the duo, was designed during the height of Covid-19. “Because of Covid, people’s lives have changed. Most people used to work in the office, but now they can work from home or in coffee shops. It’s much more versatile than before, ”says Xuan.
The tote bag, available in khaki and natural, has an expandable flatbed construction that opens into a roomy tote.
The best-selling Age bag starts at US $ 445 for the hemp version and US $ 495 for the leather. The Edge, Advene’s second model, costs US $ 395 and the tote is US $ 445. Worldwide shipping is free, and 15% will be discounted on every order that chooses minimal packaging.
WHAT IS THE GOOD?
In addition to using recycled and fully traceable leather, Advene also uses hemp, which is strong (four times that of cotton), durable and produced in a carbon neutral facility powered by solar energy.
Deliveries are 100% carbon neutral and Advene dust cloths are made from dead fabrics from their hemp textile supplier.
“There are rollers and rollers in the warehouse because they have few spots or blemishes,” says Xuan. “You end up adopting them for the dust bag because at the end of the day it’s just to help protect the bag, it doesn’t have to be perfect. This is our approach to packaging.
Advene also entices customers with a discount if they choose minimal packaging. If a customer preferred more complete packaging, Advene created an FSC certified chipboard box. Greyboard is made from recycled pulp produced from old newspapers, cardboard boxes and other packaging, making it 100% recyclable.
“We want to be a destination where people can find great designs that they can use in their everyday life,” said Xuan. “The category is really unlimited; it could be all that is tactile for everyday life.
“But we want to keep this design approach consistent,” Wang said. “Develop something that truly captures a daily moment for people, then inspires them for their daily adventures.”
Advene can do this by maintaining close relationships with its customers, according to Wang. Surveys sent to customers ask questions about everything from product design to future designs. As a direct-to-consumer business, customer feedback from the brand influences the design. Advene will launch a shoulder bag next spring, followed by a Tote 2.0.
“Five years from now, based on our current pace, I think you’ll see a full line of handbags and small projects, tactile items, and also potentially key pieces for ready-to-wear, or can -being collaborations with furniture, ”says Xuan. “Things that we can apply our design philosophy to, and then you can enjoy it in your everyday life. “