This Aussie brand is making social waves, and Allbirds nabs a sizable investment.
Australian shoe brand Senso, an Instagram influencer favorite, might seem as if it just launched — the company continues to be discovered by new customers every day. But it’s actually more than 30 years old.
Kim and Scarlett Meller debuted the familyowned and -operated business in the early 1980s. The label became successful and wellknown at home, but now Senso is looking to penetrate the U.S. market with help from a new generation of talent.
The Mellers’ three daughters, Alicia, Imogen and Skye, have signed on to take over design, marketing and sales duties, and have since directed the label’s designs toward a more contemporary feel.
“We started to manufacture out of China,” said designer Skye, who studied at the London College of Fashion. “We’ve taken on a new aesthetic and direction.”
Featuring on-trend stylish booties, mules, heels, loafers and flats at accessible price points, Senso has become a hit among style stars such as Gigi Hadid and sister Bella Hadid. Gigi stepped out in a pair of the brand’s Qweene stretch satin booties last month, for instance, while Bella was seen strutting around Milan Fashion Week in Senso’s navy satin mules.
As the brand continues to shine in the contemporary space, the Meller girls’ parents are still very much involved.
“I look back to the archives and the Italian collections [my parents made], which are relevant now, like with the kitten heel trend,” said Skye.
With an assortment of 60 shoe styles created every season — retailing from $140 to $350 through their own e-commerce site as well as those of Revolve, Shopbop, Bloomingdales and more — Skye said they are targeting the girl on the go who is looking for affordable luxury fashion.
“We always try to maintain a wearable element to our shoes, whether it’s a block heel or in mid-height,” Skye added. “We try to make it opulent and rich, with texture featuring shiny matte black, stretch, velvet, glitter, faux fur and prints, [for instance]. Our dayto-night styles are very popular, as are the clean silhouettes.”
Senso Qweene bootie seen on Gigi Hadid