Aase Hopstock is predicted to rise quickly in the ranks of luxurious and urban footwear fashion. The Norwegian-born designer launched her own brand, ‘Aase Hopstock’ in 2010, two years after graduating from the prestigious Cordwainers College with a 1st class honours. Of course we were no less than delighted when Aase stopped by the MSL headquarters, bearing beautiful gifts!
Aase creates shoes that are ‘luxurious, exclusive and covetable’; their playful and bold designs ooze glamour and femininity, whilst maintaining a sense of dynamism and edginess, an absolute representation of the charismatic Aase herself.
A recipient of technical awards and nominated for the renowned Marchpole award, Aase was adamant from the age of 12 that she was going to be a designer. She worked in costume, fashion design and fashion illustration before embarking on a career in designing shoes, initiated by working with the remarkable Tracey Neuls. This naturally led Aase to develop her own label.
Whilst travelling the world with her husband, Aase began making plans to create her own designs, “We reached exciting places like Auckland, San Francisco and New York, great inspirational and urban places to design, where I created my first collection”, explains Aase. “I decided to call it ‘Aase Hopstock’ because I feel that it’s my personal work, my hopes, dreams and desires. Its how I look at the world and to call it anything else wouldn’t feel right.”
Meticulous attention to detail on each limited pair of shoes accentuates the exclusivity of Aase’s designs. With a unique signature serial number on each and every pair, Aase uses sumptuous materials to compliment the seductiveness and desirability of her shoes; creamy leathers of bold and metallic shades, opulent snake print and python velvet, all with the trademark gold cherry blossom on the insole, reminding you of the exertion and sentiment Aase has integrated in the making.
So what is a typical day like for a flourishing designer? “One day is not like the next, which I think is fabulous”, says Aase. “I feel quite excited that every day is a bit different. There obviously is admin and marketing to do which does take up a lot of your time when running your own business, but there are days when I get to go to Alicante for a week to work with my wonderful factory”, a small family run Artisan factory in Elda. “I’ll sit in my favourite coffee shop curled up on the sofa designing, travel around on sales trips, or I’ll just walk around the city gathering inspiration.”
Aase’s treasured item of clothing is a beautiful traditional woollen Norwegian shawl. It is black in colour, with elegant rose red embroidery, representing her home county of Telemark. The shawl made by her mother, holds an abundance of memories for Aase and allows her to take a comforting piece of her cultural heritage and adolescence wherever she goes. “In Norway I’ll call it a shawl, and in England, a scarf. I wear it differently in the two countries, because the cultural rules for this piece of clothing are different. In Norway, it’s bound to tradition, its part of a costume you would wear on special occasions and makes me feel very Norwegian when I wear it. When I take it out of its context, where there are no rules for it, I can wear it as I wish. I’ll team it with a beautiful black coat, a silver- buckled belt and some amazing little booties. Then it becomes a whole different garment, which is very exciting!”
“I am fascinated by what Maggie Semple does with fashion stories; it’s something very close to my heart. So many qualities and emotions go into certain things in your wardrobe and when you where them they carry confidence and support, making you feel comfortable, like anything is possible that’s how stories are made about them. The fact that pieces of clothing and shoes can have such a strong emotional impact on you is fascinating and I think it’s fantastic that someone is starting to gather these stories, it’s amazing.”
Aase Hopstock is a charming, talented and forward- thinking designer, who considers the modern- day strong, spirited women as a muse for her designs. Discussing the type of woman Aase imagines when designing, she states “She isn’t afraid to get attention because they are not shy shoes that I make. She’s playful and has a good sense of humour, reminiscent of the old Hollywood glamour era”, a recurring theme of Aase’s shoes.
“A really great pair of shoes should make you fall in love, with yourself, with the world and with the streets you walk on, and if I can achieve that then I have succeeded.”
The Semple team are most definitely excited to see Aase’s future collections.