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STYLE & BEAUTY

5 things to know about Aupen, the Singapore-based fashion brand whose fans include Taylor Swift and Olivia Rodrigo

What is Aupen? Here are a few facts about the fashion brand that has captured the hearts of many Hollywood celebrities.

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In 2023, Taylor Swift was spotted carrying an Aupen bag on one of her dates with Travis Kelce. (Photos: Aupen)

Over the past few months, Singapore-based fashion brand Aupen has enjoyed a silent but steady rise in popularity. Initially deemed a "quiet luxury brand", Aupen has smashed into mainstream consciousness after its bags were spotted on multiple global celebrities.

Fans include Olivia Rodrigo, Jennifer Lawrence, Kylie Jenner and, of course, Taylor Swift who famously carried Aupen's Nirvana bag on a date with athlete Travis Kelce.

So how did this humble brand become Hollywood's hottest commodity? Here's what you need to know about Aupen.

1. WHAT IS AUPEN?

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The Purpose and Joy designs are some of Aupen's most popular items. (Photo: Aupen)

Aupen is known for its range of bags which boast a unique asymmetrical design and sleek finish. A portmanteau of the words "authentic" and "open", Aupen initially used vegan leather in its products before transitioning to calfskin leather in early 2024.

Its popularity has been attributed to several factors, namely its low price point (Aupen's most expensive bag costs S$565) and its clean design which makes it a versatile accessory for any outfit.

2. WHO IS BEHIND AUPEN?

Aupen has studios in both Brooklyn and Singapore. However, not much is known about Aupen's team which comprises anonymous designers.

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An artisan working on an Aupen bag. (Photo: Aupen)

According to its website, Aupen's Singapore factory houses artisans who "have dedicated years to perfecting their craft". The brand also sources its leather from the Leather Working Group – a collective that's committed to building a sustainable future with responsible leather.

3. WHO HAS BEEN SEEN USING IT?

By now, Aupen has amassed a legion of celeb fans. In a montage posted on Aupen's social media pages, celebrities who have been spotted using an Aupen bag include Emma Stone, Selena Gomez and Fan Bingbing.

It is believed that Kylie Jenner was the first celebrity to kickstart the trend after she was spotted with a Fearless bag in 2022, months after Aupen's launch. Aupen's popularity hit the stratosphere in October 2023 when Taylor Swift was seen clutching onto a Nirvana bag while on a date with Travis Kelce.

As Cosmopolitan puts it, that was the moment Aupen became the It bag.

In an email response to CNA Lifestyle, Aupen said of its Hollywood fandom: "Team Aupen is delighted by the growing recognition and interest from world-class celebrities. Their admiration for our work is both an honour and a testament to our innovative efforts."

When asked about any potential collaborations with these celebrities, Aupen remained coy and wrote: "Your guess is as good as ours. You’ll have to keep your eyes peeled."

4. WHY IS AUPEN IN THE SPOTLIGHT AGAIN?

On Friday (May 10), Aupen sent the fashion world into a tizzy when it announced that it was bidding goodbye – prompting speculation by many that it has shut down. The announcement also coincided with reports that Aupen had received investment interest from several firms.

Speaking to CNA Lifestyle, Aupen confirmed that there is "interest from the H&M group and several private equity firms". However, it declined to comment on the figures as well as whether or not its social media posts were linked to the investment interest.

"As a brand, we are not trying to chase collection after collection; we prioritise the real luxury ethos of timelessness."

5. CAN WE STILL BUY AN AUPEN BAG?

As of writing, only Aupen's Brooklyn bags are in stock. In a social media post, Aupen said that its sales and customer service will remain operational.

However, Aupen revealed to CNA Lifestyle that it will "most likely" restock its items sometime in June and advised customers to sign up for its newsletter for updates.

This article was sincerely referred from CNA
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