After studying art and philosophy in college, local entrepreneur Ashley Dedin '12 found her passion as a creator and a business owner.
As a high school student, Dedin started sewing her own clothing from materials she curated from thrift stores – deconstructing shirts, skirts and dresses and giving them new life as something completely different.
Dedin began taking commissions for custom neckties shortly after graduating from Concordia in 2012 and started selling her reclaimed creations at craft fairs and local shops.
Believing that she had found her niche, Dedin took a huge chance on herself and opened her business, AENDEE, in a downtown Fargo storefront in July 2013.
AENDEE is known for stylish and sustainable neckties and bowties she upcycles primarily from men's shirts. She carefully chooses shirts based on patterns, color and the quality of the material but says, "what's really ugly as a shirt can make for a cool necktie."
Some of Dedin's customers will send in clothing worn by loved ones to be transformed into heirloom pieces like ties, headbands or scarves that they can wear and use.
"It's more than just making stuff. Every shirt has a story," she says.
Hear Dedin's story and how her background in philosophy has shaped her as a business owner:
Find Dedin's shop at AENDEE.com.
Video by Evan Balko
Laura Caroon '06 is a content strategist at Concordia College.