AKAZI WOMEN :
JESSICA D'ABADIE & CHRISTINA SYMES - FOUNDERS OF WE ARE TRIIBE
This month, we are honoured to share an interview with our dear friends Jessica d'Abadie and Christina Symes, founders of We Are Triibe. A multi-platform design brand founded in 2013, reinventing the way you create your space; specialising in interior design, styling, furniture design and creative direction.
The choices we make with our clothing make us feel more creative and comfortable within ourselves. The natural fabrics, muted colours and organic lines all play a part. How does fashion influence you?
We love all elements of design and feel as though within this realm - whether it be fashion, art or interiors, they all share a connection and tend to influence each other. A majority of the work we do is with fashion clients, and we are always finding ways to blend their beliefs and processes into an interior space that truly reflects their brand essence. Sometimes it’s the mood that the brand evokes which we develop into the mood of the interior space, and sometimes it’s the fabrics and colour palettes.
Often – it’s all of it together.
“Our work is informed by elements of art, craftsmanship, sustainability, environmental psychology”. Tell us a bit more about this, and how you embrace interior design?
We have core beliefs that drive the designs we create. We often look to art as a point of inspiration for our designs, through colour palettes, form and texture. Craftsmanship is always really important to us, as we believe that pieces should last a lifetime. We approach design with an attitude of ‘less is more’ opting for quality and craftsmanship above mass manufactured and less sentimental pieces. Sustainability drives a lot of our design as well as it’s something that has always been very important to us and is becoming even more so. Most of all, we aim to create spaces with a core focus on environmental psychology – creating homes and interior realms that make us feel happy just to be in them.
What textures and colours do you enjoy having around your home?
Both Christina and I really gravitate towards natural tones in our home. We love incorporating splashes of colour through art and homewares - things that can change with seasons and moods. But, for both of us, the base of our home is warm, layered with timbers, soft fabrics, art and objects and pieces which hold meaning. For both of us, we believe home is a place which should make you feel cozy and relaxed, the colours and textures we choose within our home tend to evoke these feelings.
How would you describe the influences in your worlds that have contributed to making you the women you are today?
I think I’ve become the woman I am today because of a lot of really special people who have influenced my life. My mum has always been a really big inspiration to me, she always taught me to work hard and supported me through many of the big decisions I made in life. She gave me the confidence to start our business and to fearlessly trust my instincts.
I have learnt so much from my closest friends, and feel continuously in awe at every single one of them – including Tina, who is a dreamer, and who has taught me to dream more too. My husband Josh has taught me a calmness that before him didn’t really exist, and along with him, my brothers and my dad have always been some of the biggest supporters and taught me to have faith in myself.
Starting a business forced me to grow a lot in a very short amount of time, having to become completely self-reliant was scary and I had to overcome a lot of fears and limiting beliefs. This also contributed in a large way to making me who I am today.
I have been incredibly fortunate to be surrounded by the most inspiring women & men who constantly cheer each other on and lift each other up. They have a fire in their heart and the world in their hands - it has been amazing to watch some of my nearest and dearest flourish on their own ventures, which in turn keeps me striving to grow with them.
Triibe has based its new Concept Studio in Surry Hills, Sydney. Tell us about this and your favourite interior space in Sydney?
When we got our first office we loved the space so much, and we loved the idea of collaborating with makers, artists and furniture suppliers to create a space together that we could work in, have people come in and visit, and inspire people with ways to create an office space that isn’t what they thought it should be. We wanted to create and inspire people through changing schemes and with that – being continuously inspired ourselves. We are currently in the process of changing our third concept studio, reinventing the space yet again feels so good – it’s like moving into a new home, and it’s a concept anyone can do in their own spaces. We want to show people how.
My favourite interior space in Sydney is the art gallery of NSW. Aside from interior design, I also love to paint. So one of my favourite things to do when I’m feeling uninspired is to go there and just stare at the paintings. The building itself has so much charm with its old herringbone floors and arched ceilings.
A restaurant in Paddington called 10 William, it’s simple yet refined and has such a welcoming environment every time I am there. Always best spent with good company.