Meet My Friend: Jessica Tracy of KORE SWIM - Handmade in the Heartland

Meet My Friend: Jessica Tracy of KORE SWIM

KORE Swim Designer Jessica Tracy

As you know I love sharing my friends' work with you and today I am so excited for you to meet my friend Jessica.  Jessica and I met freshmen year at RISD and stayed friends through graduation, we both majored in apparel and spent many many late nights in studio, mornings in critique and lunches at the watermark.  Jessica is genuine and kind, she cares about her friends and is fun to be around.  A few years ago when i was in Las Vegas at market selling accessories she was also there with her fledgling swimwear line- KORE.  I'm in awe of the success she has had in just a few short years, i remember opening up the June issue of W magazine last summer and seeing one of her maillots huge on those big pages,  i was so excited, and then just a few weeks ago Beyonce showed up in my instagram feed wearing another one of KORE's suits!  Jessica is not only a great designer but she's a great friend, beautiful and graceful. So blogworld, meet my friend Jessica Tracy!

W Magazine June 2013

What is your current job & Where do you live?
I started a women's swimwear company, KORE SWIM, three years ago with my sister. I am the designer and manage the creative & production side of the company, while my sister manages the marketing and sales. I live in a studio in Corona del Mar, CA (a quaint neighborhood close to Newport Beach). It's a perfect place for me since it's a beautiful, walking friendly town with a bunch of cute restaurants & bars and just a couple blocks from the beach, and also close enough to LA, where we produce our swimwear.


Describe your work process
Every day is a new day for me. It's nice to set my own schedule at least a day in advance so I know what I need to accomplish by the end of each day. Either I'm working from my home designing and developing our next collection or planning upcoming productions, or I'm in LA checking in on production and making sure things get done. I also need those inspirational days to keep the creativity flowing - days where I sketch, people watch, read magazines, and watch classic movies. I'm also hoping to start painting again.

A look from the 2013 collection
What do you enjoy most about what you do?
It makes my day when I read a good review of our swimwear from a customer. I'm so happy to know someone really appreciates my designs and feels great in KORE SWIM. We're not just making swimwear to make swimwear, we are creating a company to empower women and make them feel confident. I love seeing my designs come to life - to oversee the process from initial sketch to seeing a woman looking amazing on the beach in KORE SWIM is extremely rewarding.

A look from the 2014 collection

If you could design for any client who would it be?
We were really excited when we saw Beyoncé wearing our Flora one-piece, and she's one woman we'd love to design more swimwear/clothing for! It would be really cool to collaborate with a celeb for an event or show, like a concert tour. We admire strong, confident women with an original style, so we would love to design for women like Gwyneth Paltrow,Chloe Sevigny, and Sofia Coppola.

Beyonce in KORE SWIM
Beyoncé wearing Flora
What has been your favorite project (collection) to date?
The 2015 collection (that we're developing right now) compared to our first 2012 collection has evolved so much. Partially because I'm growing as a designer and learning about myself, and mostly because we listen to our customer and are learning more about her each day. So to answer the question, our 2015 collection is my favorite to date, but I know I'll love the next one even more.

A look from the 2012 collection
Tell us a few of your favorite spots in your city. (restaurant, shop, coffee bar etc)
Corona del Mar has some great restaurants that are easily walkable from my studio. Side Door is a really cool restaurant with upscale 'bar food' and has a really fun vibe. Rose's Cafe is my favorite weekend morning spot - it's the best place to meet up with my neighborhood friends and they have the best donuts in town :) Because I like sweets and especially donuts, I make sure to work out a lot and stay healthy. The Bar Method in Newport Coast is the best workout hands down - it works every muscle in your body and you feel accomplished at the end of the one-hour class. I've been doing it for 3 years now, and it's improved my body and strength more than anything else I've ever tried. Since I'm in downtown LA often, I love dropping by the new ACE hotel for a drink after a long day at the factory and checking out the newest items at OAK, which just opened there and also sells KORE SWIM!


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