Tobago-born, US-based designer Trishelle Leacock — a former national track and field athlete — has sprinted into the world of fashion design. And she’s already turning heads, earning recognition in Marie Claire and Essence magazine earlier this year. She shares more about her brand (Kaiso. Swim), and her new collection, VOYAGE. — as told to Shelly-Ann Inniss
I discovered another meaning of the word “kaiso”, which is “ka” (go), “iso” (forward) — so my mantra is “go forward”. The name Kaiso. Swim is rooted in the idea of continually breathing life into our stories and heritage through our pieces, and also being inspired by the new generation who are now writing their own. It also highlights some of our central values of continually growing, evolving, and innovating as a brand.
The process [of creating VOYAGE.] came from a flood of emotions on a trip home to Tobago. It felt extra special. I knew then what I wanted to do with my life and brand, and that my first resort collection should reflect that shift. So the DISCOVERY. print has elements from different areas of the island, areas I grew up visiting often: Parlatuvier Bay, Pigeon Point, and Argyle Falls.
The BLOOM. print is a little self-explanatory as it shows the result of me finding myself and the legacy I want to create. I know I still have a way to go, but getting to this point has been fun.
This collection is very near to my heart as it signifies an extreme growth phase for me. This brand has always been my outlet to share my creativity and tell stories based on my life and heritage, so being able to do that through clothing has been a blessing.
VOYAGE. relates to life’s constant journey. Part one signifies discovery as she found herself, and part two illustrates purpose — she bloomed. Sharing this phase of my life has brought me so much joy and peace throughout the creative process, and I hope this collection resonates with anyone who comes into contact with it, as they are on their VOYAGE. of self-discovery.
We are currently online, but the goal is to get it in boutiques around the Caribbean and major department stores worldwide. I want to venture into Carnival wear. I’m excited to be able to get a little crazier with the designs.