Meet our creative, intelligent and simply brilliant friends who inspire KITRI in every single way.
Meet Jessica Skye, #KITRIgirl and founder of Fat Buddha Yoga. Aimed at the ‘next generation of urban yogis’, it takes a fun approach to yoga, with classes hosted to original playlists in some of London’s coolest locations. The epitome of a modern go-getter, Jessica also runs yoga and surf retreats, is a Nike yoga trainer and a successful DJ, creating the playlist for our Soho pop up. We sat down with Jessica to talk about her career and how she’s turned her passion into a business.
We’d love to know more about your career path so far…
I started off in PR work placements for brands like Jimmy Choo and Dr Marten, but my first exec job after University was in the online team at an action sports media hub. It was during this period I became obsessed with yoga, and I lasted a little under a year before quitting to pursue my yoga training. On my return I worked freelance in the fitness industry doing short term PR & media roles for boutique studios and small brands, as well as starting to DJ professionally. I went on to work at a fitness tech-start up, and it was during this time I set up Fat Buddha Yoga. Fast forward 5 years, I've signed a contract with Nike and FBY exists as a string of residencies around London - we do events, brand partnerships, corporate wellness, retreats as well as yoga mats and tees. I have 7 awesome freelance instructors and music is still a huge part of the brand, Fat Buddha Music.
Did you always know that you wanted to teach yoga?
Kind of… I always knew I wanted to work for myself and have my own business, I just didn’t know what it would be! When I discovered yoga, I found something that I could sell and sell honestly. By having yoga as the commodity I would never be creating a false need, or selling a product that didn’t work. It’s a pure product, it’s good for you, it makes you feel great and I enjoy teaching it. The next thing was to create a brand and way of teaching that was authentic to me, I’m not your hippy dippy yogi, so I wanted to create the type of class I wanted to go to: fun and dynamic, in cool locations with decent music and good vibes! I also wanted to make accessible and affordable.
Here at KITRI we’re always inspired by women who have turned their talent and passion into a successful career. What are your top tips for women who are thinking about going it alone and setting up their own business?
Be true to yourself and be honest with what you actually want out of life and remember it’s never too late! If it’s all you can think about and you know what you want to do, what are you waiting for? It’s good to start a passion project as a side hustle, eventually it’ll reach critical mass, then you need to decide whether to make it your full time hustle, or keep it as a side project. My final tip is that you can only plan so far - you don’t need to be able to see the whole staircase to take the first step!
You created the playlist for our Soho pop up and we absolutely love it!
Talk us through the mix!
I love house and disco, the older the better! The KITRI store playlist is a mix of '70s disco (Donna Summer and Chaka Khan), to '90s classic we all would have listened to growing up like TLC and Lauryn Hill, as well as house edits using disco and funk samples. It’s mostly female artists and for me, a nostalgic journey through some of my favourite musical eras.
Who inspires you?
Creative do-ers and passionate people who turn an idea into a reality. Not to mention people who are aren’t ashamed to be themselves and say what they really think.
What does a typical day look like?
I get asked this a lot and there is literally no such thing. Some days I’m up at the crack of dawn to teach, then the day will be a mix of meetings, yoga sessions, shoots, emails in cafés, product launches, evening yoga classes, media events, DJ bookings, it’s always a mixed bag. Some days will have all the above squashed into 24hrs!
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
To not worry about what everyone else is doing and to just do me.
How would you describe your style?
My style straddles unisex (boyfriend jeans, baggy tees, and kicks) to more '70s inspired looks (sequins, kimonos, jumpsuits) and I love black! For yoga I’m usually in black lycra, so literally go nuts when I get to wear normal clothes.
We love to see you wear KITRI! Why did you choose these pieces?
I’m a sucker for a one-piece or co-ord and love a collar, shirt or trench. My KITRI styles are just so me! The Jacqueline Vegan Leather Trench Dress is really unusual and I love that I can also wear it as a coat, I’ve had so many compliments on it. The colour and shape of the Celeste Tailored Jumpsuit is so flattering and versatile… I can dress it up or down, every time I’ve worn it so many people ask where it’s from.
Jacqueline Vegan Leather Dress, Ariane Mohair Chevron Jumper Dress, Reid Vinyl Jacket, Vivien Rib Knit Jumper, Remi Black Vegan Leather Trousers
What’s your party trick?
Being the last to leave.
Finally, what’s next?!
You’ll have to wait and see :)