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JODHI MEARES

“At THE UPSIDE there is an enormous amount of trust and the rare thing is that
everyone is an A+ player. It's a privilege to work with my team - they are incredible.”

WITH JODHI MEARES FROM THE UPSIDE

BEAR INTERVIEW

Words

Saasha Burns

Image

Alice Mahran & Jez Smith

Founder and creative director of THE UPSIDE, Jodhi Meares, isn’t afraid to #ownthemorning. Her Instagram account is filled with powerful quotes from Diego Perez, Katherine Hepburn and Atticus that act as a gentle reminder to make every day count. Loyal customers of the Sydney- based activewear range will agree, that health and wellness is equally mental as it is physical, and the unwavering spirit at the heart of THE UPSIDE is what truly sets it apart. BEAR caught up with Jodhi to discuss the future of wellness, life on Hawaii’s North Shore, and her much anticipated retro-inspired capsule collection with pocket-rocket Nadia Fairfax.

Could you tell us the story of THE UPSIDE and the inspiration behind your active-wear and lifestyle business?
The vision for THE UPSIDE came to me after I sold Tigerlily and took a sabbatical splitting my time between New York and Hawaii. My yoga practice was deepening at that time and I was spending a lot of time in different studios. The gap in the market seemed really apparent. There was a real lack of contemporary activewear that was fashionable but also sympathetic to the needs of the mat or the gym. It kept me up at night – I couldn’t not do it.

We love the new capsule collection with Nadia Fairfax, can you tell us how that came about?
Nards and I met on my lawn in Hawaii through a mutual friend. I think I recognised another pirate spirit immediately. We hit it off, Nards really holds her own when it comes to sports dialogue – she could run rings around the biggest jocks. I love that she is a tomboy at heart but also so effortlessly fashionable. She has done such a great job on this collection. The process, from the get-go, has been an easy ride and the end result is phenomenal.

You have built an amazing team and culture at THE UPSIDE, what would you say is the success behind this?
It’s always part luck but there is an art to employing the right people. The people who are drawn to THE UPSIDE are people with real drive. I don’t like to micromanage and I give my employees free reign to really take their own initiative. At THE UPSIDE there is an enormous amount of trust and the rare thing is that everyone is an A+ player. It’s a privilege to work with my team – they are incredible.

What are your morning health rituals? How do you ‘Own the Morning’?
Yoga, yoga and more yoga!

You spend a lot of time at your home in Hawaii – where would you recommend we stay, eat and play?
My house is on the North Shore, which is renowned for its incredible food trucks. I stop at the trucks at Shark cove for everything; Acai Bowls, Thai, Vegan! Right next door is Foodland our local grocery store that sells everything from Kombucha to Veuve Clicquot! From my house it is a 15 minutes drive to the historical town called Haleiwa. Here Luibuenos is amazing for cocktails and Mexican and Beet Box is the absolute best Vegetarian in town. Banzai Japanese is so cool – you sit on the floor and watch vintage surf movies. If you’re feeling fancy you can go to Nobu in Waikiki! There is one road in to the North Shore and one road out and development has been really restricted which makes me happy. There is only really one hotel, Turtle Bay, which is iconic for sunset drinks. I stayed there many times when I was looking for my place.

What are your travel essentials?
THE UPSIDE recovery pieces are perfect for travelling in as they are super comfortable and not at all restrictive. It is important to land refreshed and my other travel must is water. It’s so important to really hydrate – don’t drink too much Champagne, that’s a rookie mistake!

Where do you see the future of health and wellness, and what does it mean to you?
That is an enormous question – it is a huge industry! It is not a fad this time, I’ve watched many fads come and go (because I am old!) and this is here to stay. Health and Wellness has hit the mainstream and that is amazing. There is so much on offer in the marketplace you can really personalise it to suit your lifestyle.

What’s next for THE UPSIDE?
I could tell you but I’d have to kill you! This company has so much scope and so many plans. I think people will be surprised where THE UPSIDE goes next!

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