Sydney native Jessica, founded LUXTRA in 2018, with an aim to celebrate luxury through the pursuit of the highest environmental standards. Building a brand which is both sustainable and transparent, helping women to live life a little more elegantly and ethically.
We sit down to discover more about the woman behind the brand with 10 quick fire questions.
How do you usually start your day?
Depending on how well I slept, I’ll get up around 6 or 6.30. I make my bed, shower, take vitamins with a big glass of water. I work from home, so I’ll basically start working as soon as I sit down with my breakfast, which is usually weetbix with Oatly.
I try to make sure however that my first task is prioritising my daily to-do. I ask myself what is the most important thing to do today, and then my top 3. I try to make a start work on those things first.
What was the catalyst for starting LUXTRA?
I had left my first business, ETHOS and the idea for Luxtra had started to germinate about a year before that. I took a deep breath and decided to finally take the plunge.
What's inside your handbag?
In terms of essentials I travel pretty lightly as I will change bags depending on my outfit and how much I need to carry that day. I will however always have my diary, a mechanical pencil and a Staedtler eraser (it is the only brand I can find that doesn't smudge!). My ears have been awakened to over-ear earphones, so I never go anywhere without them these days.
Large tote or mini handbag kind of girl?
I’m an every bag kind of girl. Handbags are my love and my life!
For day to day, working, it’s of course a tote out of practicality but for evenings out I love to use my pinatex Nina handbag. I get such a kick out of using it and enjoy seeing people's reactions when I tell them it is made from pineapple leaves.
NINA MINI HANDBAG - SILVER PIÑATEX (VEGAN)
How do you manage your work life balance?
Luxtra is my life, so my work is pretty all consuming. I will make time to see my friends in the evening, go for a run a few times a week, or have a nap in the afternoon if I am feeling tired. I allow myself that flexibility, because I see it more as a flow. Work-life is not a black and white thing for me. I will spend long stretches working but I also recognise that it is good and healthy to have breaks and allow myself time off. Oh - and my weekends are sacred. I don’t work on the weekend as this is my recharge and relax time.
The best thing about my job is…
Building something I love and seeing it grow, improve and mature over time.
The most difficult aspect of my job is…
Staying on top of all the administrative tasks, to make sure everything is done, paid or received on time and that it’s correct.
I'm happiest when...
It’s a sunny, sunny Saturday here in London and all I have planned is to sit outdoors at a cafe, or a lazy walk in the sunshine with a friend.
The woman who has inspired you most...
It changes really often depending on the latest podcast or book I am in to, or what specific issue I am struggling with. Right now it is Sara Blakely who founded Spanx. That she was so determined in creating and getting her product made and that she owns 100% of her business (which is valued at more than $1B) makes me so excited to think I too might be able to grow Luxtra in a similar, organic way. Right now I am considering how I am going to fund the growth of Luxtra, so it's really inspiring to learn about Sara's story.
What was your first handbag purchase?
The first purchase I can recall was a bright red leather FURLA bag that bought after I had moved to Paris (just seen behind me in the photo below!). It was a big milestone as I used my first French paycheck to purchase it. It symbolised that I could support myself, all alone on the other side of the world. I could make it work!
It was far too lady like for my 21 year old self, but I cherish that memory.