tasi travels gets real on your travel wardrobe

tasi travel interview smack bang designs 1
tasi travel interview smack bang designs 2
tasi travel interview smack bang designs 3
tasi travel interview smack bang designs 4

A love of travel and the desire to make the world a better place was the concept for sustainable travel label Tasi Travels. Founded by Jessica Abraham, whose trip to Timor-Leste first inspired her to create special pieces that could slide happily into your luggage and travel along with you wherever you go. Her designs are low maintenance, minimal and timeless – all you need when you’re on the road. We take a moment to chat to Jessica about where it all began.

  1. HOW DO YOU TAKE YOUR COFFEE?
    Soy latte! Sometimes iced, depending how hot it is on the Sunshine Coast at the time
  2. HOW DO YOU EARN A CRUST?
    I work part-time in marketing and design while I build my business baby, Tasi Travels.
  3. TELL US ABOUT TASI TRAVELS, HOW LONG HAD YOU BEEN DREAMING IT UP?
    The idea for Tasi was born on a trip to Timor-Leste in late 2016. Timor is an amazing country, but it can be difficult to pack for the climate. It’s in the high 30 degrees, 90% humidity and it’s also a very conservative culture so you need to be covered up. It was challenging to find clothing that was suitable for the climate but also provided coverage, dried quickly, didn’t crease and still looked good! That was where the idea for Tasi came from – I came home and got started straight away, and launched our first collection in July of 2017. 
  4. WHAT ‘S THE STORY BEHIND THE NAME?
    Tasi means “ocean” in the local Timorese language, Tetun.
  5. HOW DID YOUR CAREER BEGIN?
    My background is pretty all over the place actually. I went straight out of school to study a dual degree in Environmental & Marine Science but deferred after a year. I had always been incredibly passionate about environmental conservation, but really struggled with university as an institution, it just wasn’t how I wanted to learn and grow. I started working a basic admin position for a wellness brand, then after a year, I transitioned into the marketing role I now have for the company. I’ve been with them for four years and have learnt so much that I’m able to apply in my business every day, which has been so invaluable. I also ran an independent publication for four years, Tidal Magazine. Tidal’s main purpose was to make culture easily accessible and to showcase the incredible young creatives we have in Australia.
tasi travels gets real on your travel wardrobe

“I try and start every day with the ocean; whether that’s a surf, swim, walk on the beach or just a coffee near the water.”

  1. WHAT DOES A TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE FOR YOU?
    I try and start every day with the ocean; whether that’s a surf, swim, walk on the beach or just a coffee near the water. I’m normally in my studio pretty early after that, depending on the day I could be designing new pieces, writing blog content, organising marketing campaigns, liaising with fabric suppliers, on a shoot or trying to make sense of my finances. I always try and end the day back at the ocean too. Every day is different and I really love that about business.
  2. GIVE US AN INSIGHT INTO THE TYPE OF PERSON YOU DESIGN FOR.
    Our customers are adventurers; they are modern wanderers, always looking for the next trip or adventure, whether that’s close to home or on the other side of the globe. They appreciate beautiful and quality design, and fabrics that are kind on the planet.
  3. WHAT’S BEEN THE BIGGEST EYE-OPENER WHEN OPENING UP SHOP? 
    How ridiculously complicated it is to produce clothing! I had no idea just how many steps are involving in bringing a design to life and how many people are involved. It has been a huge learning experience and just reiterates the importance of having transparency within your supply chain.
  4. WHAT’S YOUR GO-TO REMEDY WHEN YOU’RE STUCK IN A CREATIVE RUT?
    Leaving work. I’m a big believer in working when you’re in the flow. If I’m having a day where I just can’t get myself in the right head space and I’m not motivated or getting anything done, I’ll just leave. Take the afternoon off and go outside, get in the ocean, remove myself from the situation entirely until I’m ready to go back to it with fresh eyes. Nature and travel are big ones for me, I definitely feel my energy and creativity start to dip if I’m not prioritising getting outdoors and getting away.
tasi travels gets real on your travel wardrobe
tasi travel interview smack bang designs 4

 

  1. HOW DO YOU START YOUR WEEK?
    With a big to-do list and a lot of intention. I like to map out my whole week on Sunday so I know exactly what the priorities are, where my energy needs to be and where the gaps are for coffee and surfing dates!
  2. WHAT ABOUT ENDING THE WEEK?
    Our Tasi studio is conveniently/dangerously located next to my good friend’s brewery, so we normally head there for some weekly wind-down beers.
  3. TELL US ABOUT A PROJECT YOU’VE LOVED SO FAR THIS YEAR
    This year we launched an exciting new initiative, Travel With Purpose. Designed for those looking to dive deeper into travel, to connect with the local people and culture, and have a truly authentic experience of that place. These trips are also built around positive impact, particularly in the space of marine debris and plastic pollution.
  4. WHAT HAS BEEN THE BIGGEST HURDLE FOR YOU WHEN STARTING YOUR OWN BUSINESS?
    Being able to get a clear answer on sustainability and traceability across every element of our products has been a challenge. Especially as a small brand, it sometimes feels impossible to be able to go to the top with a supplier and have traceability along every step of their supply chain. I’ve always been up to the challenge and I’ve been helped enormously by so many generous people in the industry who have been so supportive in sharing their contacts and knowledge.
  5. WHO ARE YOUR CREATIVE HEROES?
    I have some amazing friends doing incredible things in business, they inspire me every day. People like Nat and Dan from Clean Coast Collective with their creative approach to combatting plastic pollution and the team at Patagonia for constantly innovating every single aspect of their business and their designs.
  6. ONE THING YOU’D TELL SOMEONE ABOUT TO LAUNCH THEIR OWN BUSINESS?
    Get ready for an epic ride! Surround yourself with amazing people from day one – people who you’re going to be working with and people who are going to be supporting you. Make sure you’ve got amazing people you can count on to have your back, you’ll need them.
  7. YOUR NEXT ADVENTURE?
    I’m heading back to East Timor in July as part of the first Tasi Travel With Purpose trip – I can’t wait to head back to that beautiful paradise!
  8. WHAT’S ONE LESSON YOUR BUSINESS HAS TAUGHT YOU ABOUT LIFE?
    That it’s all temporary, the good and the bad, and it’s all about learning to flow with these times.

Photos: Taylah Golden

tasi travel interview smack bang designs 3
tasi travels gets real on your travel wardrobe
tasi travels gets real on your travel wardrobe
tasi travel interview smack bang designs 1

Comments

  1. Rosie says:

    Loved this feature! Such a great business model and super inspiring.

Leave a comment.

Quote? Yes, please!

Let us know what services you're after and we'll get back to you in a jiffy.

Prefer to chat? Call us on 0468 323 526 and let’s talk through the details.

Leave this empty:

Request a Quote
Close

One email. Once a fortnight.

x