My Island Muse: Racked TT

EmmaRacked

Emma

Port of Spain, Trinidad

 Tell me about yourself.
I moved to Trinidad in 2012 after leaving a demanding job in London as a wholesale manager for ethical fashion company People Tree. I now work for Nature Seekers in the beach community of Matura as the coordinator of their craft programme turning waste glass bottles into beads and jewellery. When I first moved here I really wanted to be involved in the Trini fashion scene but found it difficult.

Racked | The Fashion Market is a brand new shopping experience connecting established and emerging local fashion and accessories designers to customers and boutique owners, with opportunities for direct marketing and retail sales as well as networking with potential clients and retailers. There is so much talent in the growing Trinbagonian fashion industry but it is often difficult for designers, retailers and customers to connect in a profitable and exciting way. There are very successful craft & food markets but nothing that is pure fashion! We wanted to change that and thus Racked TT was born. Our first market is being held on Sunday July 6th from 11am-6:30pm at the intimate and breezy Verandah Restaurant. We’ve had an amazing response from designers and customers alike and can’t wait for the public to get their hands on beautiful, authentically Trinidadian pieces from Micha Gomes, Lisa’s Fabrics, Kaj Collection, Adrian Foster and Meiling’s Team M just to name a few..

What do you enjoy the most about Trinidad?
I’m a Brit by birth but I’ve fallen in love with this country. Trinidad embraces you, she swallows you whole, weaves herself into the very fabric of your being. For all the negativity here, Trinidad has been a welcoming and deeply spiritual place for me.

One thing you wish all Trinidadian women knew:
Women are at their best uplifting other women. I have found Trinidadian women to be strong-willed, creative, resilient, hardworking and passionate. We need to harness these qualities to create positive change.

Favourite Trinidadian saying?
Ooooo gooooosh!  There are so many brilliant Trini sayings, I don’t know how to choose!

Favourite place to visit in Trinidad and why?
For me nothing beats driving into Port of Spain at dusk from the east.  I love to see the hills silhouetted by the sleeping sky and come over Lady Young to meet Port of Spain twinkling in the darkness. Although, I almost said Toco Lighthouse like Ain!

You’ve spent your childhood in various countries from South America to Europe. How has this multicultural experience impacted your success and outlook on life?
Growing up between Guyana, England and Australia, I’ve always felt like a bit of an outsider, I was always aware that I was different. It can be weird not to have a sense of belonging to one particular country; sense of place can be so tightly entwined with sense of self. I think it’s really taught me not to judge, to live and let live, I really believe in that. Live your life, be who you are, as long as you’re not hurting anybody in the process, and that’s crucial. But be YOU, own your quirks.

Stephanie

Partly Port of Spain, Trinidad and Stockholm, Sweden

Tell me about yourself.
I grew up in Stockholm, Sweden but have been visiting Trinidad and Tobago every year since I was born. I decided to try out the Trini life eighteen months ago and took on Web Design, Graphic Design and Food photography projects through my digital marketing company Creative 25.

What makes you proud of your Trinidadian heritage?
Trinidad and Tobago has so much to offer, there’s so much talent and creativity here, not to mention it’s a beautiful country. When you think about Steelpan, Soca and Carnival, how can you not feel proud?

One thing you wish all Trinidadian women knew:
Something I hold on to is don’t be afraid to fail, it’s only through failure that you really learn. Sometimes you have to trust yourself and take a leap into the unknown. What matters in the end is your will, dedication and persistence.

Favourite Trinidadian saying?
‘Oh gosh nah’ – throughout all my childhood memories of visiting Trinidad, I’ve always had that saying with me, I even try to sneak it in Swedish.

Favourite place to visit in Trinidad and why?
I love Café del Mare in Chaguaramas. It’s a perfect little café in the marina where you can enjoy a cup a coffee. It’s a place where I feel a little closer to Sweden in Trinidad.

How has your heritage as a Trinidadian woman impacted your success and views on life?
I’ve always felt a little different growing up in Sweden, as I wasn’t the “typical Swede”. I had three cultures with me; Swedish, Trinidadian and Chinese. At times it was difficult, but as I grew older I really view it as a blessing. Being exposed to different cultures from infancy I know I’ve gained a lot. Trinidadian culture has sparked my interest in the world and has taught me about different cultures, as well as the importance of having an open mind and trying new things.

Ain

Who is Ain Earle?
A strong-minded, creative, passionate being. Grew up in a home where Carnival and culture was very much present. I was involved in playing mas since primary school (mum was on the committee and made special costumes for me). I can read and write music, played pan in secondary school as well as with Exodus and Curepe Sforzata. I have a professional and educational background in hospitality and tourism, and I’m passionate about events, marketing and fashion. I’ve always been an avid supporter of local businesses and talent. Since I was introduced to the local fashion scene some years ago I’ve always wished that more could be done to raise awareness and appreciation.  I was truly grateful and excited when Emma approached me to discuss the possibility of Racked TT and what it could do for the industry. It’s all about persons supporting, shopping and understanding local fashion and the talent that is right here in Trinidad and Tobago.

What makes you a proud Trinidadian?
Knowing that we are rich in a culture and heritage, that lends to our talent and creativity.

One thing you wish all Trinidadian women knew:
I wished they knew more about themselves and their history and how it can lend to their success. They do not need to depend on anyone to achieve what they desire.

Favourite Trinidadian saying?
“What sweet in goat mouth does sour in he bam bam”(hehe)

Favourite place to visit in Trinidad and why?
Toco Lighthouse, very relaxing – I appreciate any open space that has fresh air and water. The serenity at the Lighthouse lookout makes it special.

I personally believe ones cultural heritage impacts ones outlook on life, how has your heritage as a Trinidadian woman impacted your success and views on life?
It has given me a great sense of pride in myself and work. Given me a drive and perseverance to see things through and to ensure that I am always financially independent.

Link Love
https://www.facebook.com/rackedtt
IG: rackedtt