The information age and subsequent digitalisation of the global economy have conceived a plethora of new businesses, with creative types and fashion enthusiasts taking the plunge to launch what they believe will metamorphose into the next global behemoth. And as if digital access to the previously impenetrable realm of manufacturing and production wasn’t enough, the social media age that has ensued, has spawned platforms to market these ‘disruptive’ new ventures to the world. Hence the cacophony of new brands and labels that pollute #influencer pages the world over – all jostling for a piece of the burgeoning menswear pie.
Where most of these businesses fall flat though, is in the quality and originality of their product – typically, they’re terrible on both fronts, and ultimately, the business dissipates as somewhat of a creative miscarriage – albeit a valuable learning experience. Take it from someone who’s been there… Built upon the pillars of quality artisanship and originality in terms of the price offering, AARCH may well transcend the plight of many new businesses and make it out alive.
As is often the case in business, AARCH’s 2015 beginnings were somewhat serendipitous as Aaron Cheung – the founder – begun his fruitless search for a pair of gloves to accompany him on international travel. Much to his dismay though, gloves and Australia form quite the dichotomy, with options confined exclusively to large luxury houses or cheap rubbish that can hardly be classified as anything more than toe socks. And so it was suggested by a friend of Aaron’s that he direct his attention to a small-scale Hungarian atelier from whom he could commission a custom pair of gloves befitting of his sartorial decorum. And so begun AARCH.
Two years since the brand’s inception and Aaron has relocated the bulk of AARCH’s production to Italy – leveraging the reservoir of artisanal talent in Napoli for their RTW collection, although they still maintain a small portion of production in Hungary – albeit exclusively for custom orders. In a market where leather accessories like gloves are often ancillary to a brand’s core offering, AARCH distinguishes themselves in this niche by way of allocating more time to hone their product – both aesthetically and functionally.
To this end, AARCH’s gloves are particularly impressive in their fit. Aside from the pattern the leather is cut to, arguably the most crucial component in ensuring the fit is adhering to the process by which the leather is stretched prior to cutting. For softer leathers like peccary and carpincho, this practice ensures that elasticity is distributed evenly and no areas are prone to shrinkage – thus preventing any subsequent distortion of the glove.
The fruits of AARCH’S labour are beautiful – luxuriously soft, supple and lightweight gloves cut from carpincho and peccary leathers that are abundant in character – not sullied by linings that detract from their intrinsic raw beauty. Unlike most young brands who burn initial cash reserves on elaborate websites and fancy branding assets without the foresight of product development, and who subsequently fail to reconcile their digital presence with their deliverable, AARCH find themselves in an alternate universe of sorts – where their branding and online presence fails to do justice to the beautiful quality of their gloves. Don’t be fooled though – to wear and experience the gloves is to embrace the ethereal pleasures of a true luxury product – a refreshingly abnormal feat for such a young brand.
To peruse AARCH’s offering, please visit: