Growing up on the island of Maui, Olympia founder and designer, Kaili Lickle, spent most of her time outdoors. When she moved to San Francisco to pursue her bachelors degree in design and visual merchandising, she found herself spending more time indoors at exercise studios. She noticed her athletic wardrobe was missing pieces that were functional in her workouts and simple in their design. After graduating, Kaili decided to combine her knowledge of design with her passion to live an active lifestyle in creating Olympia.
Strength and femininity remain the pillars for Olympia, where did the concept come from and how does it influence your product?
It is what we hope our brand represents at its core and in turn how our products make people feel.
What would you say sets you apart from your activewear competitors?
That’s hard to say! I think we are all in this business to make a living but also to do something meaningful. Creating comfortable clothing that people can move in and change their bodies in is a huge motivation for us. One thing I see that sets us apart from other brands is our desire to stay small and curated. We don’t want to be seen everywhere and be worn by everyone. We are small and independent and like it that way.
Do you think growing up in the tropical paradise of Maui, Hawaii influenced your design aesthetic?
Yes and no. It’s more the way it influenced my way of living. Design-wise Maui doesn’t have everything on offer. I had to go out and experience the world in my 20’s. It was then that I was exposed to different design styles and kind of came up with my own eclectic-yet-minimalistic design ethos.
How do you want women to feel when wearing Olympia attire; what are some of the core values you wish to portray?
We hope that women of all ages and sizes and shapes feel comfortable and beautiful wearing our pieces. It’s a constant work in progress, listening to our customers and working their feedback into our design and fit.
Functionality and simplicity remain at the forefront of Olympian design, are you products created for a specific sport or is their functionality versatile?
We like to think of the product as very versatile. Nothing is made with the intention of being for one activity or another. They work equally as well in a studio or a gym or on a hike.
Where do you draw inspiration for each collection?
Often the ideas come from very random places. A collection usually starts with base colours, and then we layer in texture, stripes, print, mesh, etc. The results are always a bit of a surprise.
The elegant editorial side of Olympia is unique, what inspired you to create a brand so visually engaging and coherent?
I guess that came from personal preference. I am so drawn to imagery, actually I think that’s true for most of my generation. We are living in the age of Pinterest and Instagram. The world has always been visual and stunning, but now we have instant access and it’s pretty amazing.
In what way do you most enjoy moving your body?
I love studio work outs, yoga, pilates, and more recently I fell in love with Barre, thanks to the most amazing teacher, Trish Bianco, who has a great studio here on Maui called Infusion Barre.
What does the term ‘health’ mean to you and how do you try to live by it?
I was raised on freshly caught fish and homegrown fruits and vegetables. My dad was a fisherman and an avid farmer. Our ‘chores’ when we were little included working with my parents in the garden. That was a great upbringing and it really set me up for a lifetime of appreciation for real food. I didn’t start working out until my 20’s when I found yoga and spin and all these great studio workouts. I think what turned me off in my teens was the ‘team’ element. I found that I’m more independent in my approach to fitness. It’s my meditative alone time.
What can we hope to see from Olympia in the future?
We are working on some new elements to add to our offering in the coming year. I can’t say too much so you’ll just have to stay tuned!
Shop Olympia online at Hip & Healthy!