I Love Ugly was started in 2008 as an art project by our founder and Creative Director; Valentin Ozich. Initially a passion project, I Love Ugly was conceived through late nights spent cogitating over a rapidly expanding body of designs and illustrations within an allocated cupboard of Valentin’s mother-in-law’s home in Auckland, New Zealand.
Valentin studied graphic design at University, developing a voracious desire to physically manifest his creative style. Furthermore, he discovered the natural and most effective physical canvas for this manifestation to be clothing. And thus, the modern I Love Ugly was born.
By 2011, I Love Ugly had grown & developed with a primary vision to create the best premium men’s streetwear brand in the world. A unified mission to creatively inspire their customers to achieve their aspirations. Soon, Valentin and his small Auckland-based team opened the first I Love Ugly online and retail stores.
I Love Ugly continued to grow – a year later, after a period of rapid growth thanks to innovative products such as the now iconic Zespy Pant. Distinctive patterned headwear and garments found traction in the public marketplace. I Love Ugly quickly claimed international recognition as a physical embodiment of sophisticated simplicity for the creative and aspirational individual.
Today I Love Ugly continues to grow as an internationally recognised brand. One that has carved out a niche as a premium yet accessible lifestyle brand. Collaborating with some of the world's most prestigious heritage brands such as Onitsuka Tiger, and JanSport, yet never forgetting our homegrown roots. Throughout our growth we continue to show love to lesser known creative individuals & collectives from Aotearoa, and around the globe.
I Love Ugly is ever evolving, with a goal to push boundaries and revolutionise the premium lifestyle-wear marketplace of tomorrow.
Aspire to inspire before you expire.