Our kooky story began in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. We met (as many do these days) through that most surprising of matchmakers – the internet, on a dating site for expats. And who are we? We are Chris & Lindsey, an Austrian/British couple, who met back in 2014 and instantly connected over a mutual love of cheese, wine and roaming the world seeking enriching experiences and adventure.
As our relationship developed, we fell in love with one another’s kooky characteristics. The dictionary defines kooky as “strange or eccentric” but to us, this simply means weirdly wonderful and unique. During our years of living together and working in Vietnam, we were lucky enough to travel a lot of South East Asia and saw first-hand some of the mind-blowingly resourceful ways in which Asian cultures utilise the earth’s natural treasures. We will save telling you all about that for a future blog as it is a fascinating subject! This eye-opening approach to sustainable living ignited the very first spark of inspiration, for what was to later evolve into our passion project.
From Vietnam to India
After our tenure in Vietnam, we took some time off to extensively travel around India, a country we’d both dreamt of exploring for a very long time. We had already collected many inspirations from our experiences and all we’d seen, but it wasn’t until the trip to India, when we finally had time to reflect on these ideas, that they all came together and resulted in Kwooksta being born.
The Birth of Kwooksta
Travelling the Western Bengal state of India, we soon became aware of the material jute and saw lots of cool and quirky everyday items made from this versatile, plant-based fibre. While we realised that there were many great jute products available in India, the material remains very underused and undervalued in the West. Something that we instantly knew we soon wanted to change!
With a suitcase full of jute samples, we moved to Vienna to settle down together and began the creation of our brand and the design of our first bag collection. The combination of our kooky personalities, lifestyle, and the materials we choose to work with gave us the inspiration for our brand name.
The rest is history! Having just launched our website and debut range, we thought now was the perfect time to share our story with you and we hope that you enjoyed reading it.
Until next time…Be kind. Be kooky. Be Kwooksta.
Chris & Lindsey x