"I work hard and I see the women here in Indonesia working even harder. They are the most caring, family oriented and responsible women I've ever met. They don't get credit for being strong."
"I'm Rachel and everyone knows me as a loyal, enthusiastic, genuine woman from Atlanta, GA. The biggest challenge for me was getting out of my comfort zone. I felt that I needed a big change in my life to wake me up and I decided to see if there were opportunities for me as a teacher outside of the US. I found that opportunity in Bali.
"I had never been to Bali or even to Asia but I decided to take the chance. It was scary moving here by myself, I didn't know anyone, I didn't know the language, the money, the culture… nothing! I had no idea what to expect but I took a leap of faith knowing I would be doing something that I love: to teach and heal, that was all I could expect from this journey. I experienced a bit of culture shock when I arrived in Bali but have since fallen in love with the island and its ways. I love being a teacher and now I know I can do this anywhere in the world.
"Being an American on a small island in Asia, I think I have provided many silly, embarrassing and funny moments for anyone who happened to be watching as well as myself… from learning to ride a motorbike in the crazy traffic to ordering food at a warung (a small shop or café, usually an own-family business). I have a bit of a southern accent so I still get teased by how I pronounce certain words in Indonesian.
"I help people through Pilates, and I have always been interested in fashion. After practically living in active wear throughout my career as a dancer and Pilates instructor, I wanted to create a line of clothing that is comfortable, functional yet stylish enough to wear to lunch.
"I was looking for a woman or group of women to work with, and I wanted this to be more than just a designer-manufacturer relationship. I wanted to learn and in turn hope that the sewers and tailors would learn as well. I wanted to make sure I could talk and be partners with the workshop. We should be able to work and grow together and have a mutually beneficial relationship for everyone.
"By providing jobs to local Balinese women hopefully we will continue to grow our venture together so that more and more women can join our team. It's a dream come true to now have an outlet for my creative side by designing stylish, functional clothing while providing jobs for the local Balinese women. I work hard and I see the women here in Indonesia working even harder. They are the most caring, family oriented and responsible women I've ever met. They don't get any credit for being so strong.
"I am self taught in design but work closely with a women's workshop to make my ideas and designs a reality. I went through many trials and errors. I tried again and again until it was right! It's scary to invest all your money on a chance to do something you believe in. It's not always about me, it's about the customer, they have to love it just as much as I do. It's been a fun and rewarding challenge for me.
"I use cotton, rayon and Lycra fabrics. Lycra is a must for active wear, you need to be able to move and stretch and feel comfortable. All materials are purchased locally and we use leftover scraps of fabric to make our labels and hang tags.
"I love having a creative inspiration become a reality. It is so rewarding when one a person tells me how good they feels when wearing my designs. They are made for movement and also to make people feel good. I like to find inspiration for my pieces from what's current in the fashion world and from comments by my students have made. I'm always looking to improve on classic styles with better fit or better design."