Arete is a premium fashion brand targeting young professionals working in the corporate environment. Arete started off with only one product in it’s portfolio: high quality, locally-made socks. It was founded in 2017 by two fashion enthusiasts to respond to the need of high quality socks, the market in Romania being filled with low quality, imported socks.
Markt was hired from the onset, to create the naming, positioning and brand identity. After research we found the term “arete”, (an ancient greek word meaning excellence or the best state an object or person could be) as a reference to the quality of the products the brand offers and the audience it addresses, the word “aristocracy” sharing the same root as the word “arete”.
Aristotle defined “arete” as a state of balance in virtues. In short, if a person, place, thing, has an “excess” or a “deficiency” of a virtue, then it is not in its “most excellent” state, and thus the term arete does not describe this imbalanced state. When a thing is in its perfect “balanced” state, its “best state,” perfectly mirroring its ideal form/essence, that thing is “quality,” it is a work of art, it is the arete of that thing.
We constructed the logo in the form of a crest/coat of arms to further suggest the idea of nobility and luxury and we used symbols as the knight’s helmet, swords and a shield. We used the idea of a knight as it was relevant both to the audience it addressed and the idea of “virtue”, as knights are regarded as people with virtues such as honour, valour, faith. In ancient and medieval times, knights were also, only members in the high society, noblemen, members of the aristocracy, because only they could support the cost of the armour and horse during a war.
For the colour scheme we used gold and the Tyrian purple, a colour extracted from the murex shellfish which was first produced by the ancient Phoenician city of Tyre. It’s difficulty of manufacture and resistance to fading made clothing dyed in Tyrian purple, extremely expensive and desirable. A clothing article dyed in Tyrian purple used to be valued as its weight in silver, thus making Tyrian purple a colour only used by nobility and royalty.
We partnered with Targu Mures based photographer, Daniel Diaconu, to direct and photograph the Arete product portfolio.
Creative Direction & Graphic Design: Denis Trusca
Art Direction: Daniel Diaconu & Denis Trusca
Photography: Daniel Diaconu