Behind the Scenes: Island Life

Behind the Scenes: Island Life

Diving into our latest lookbook, featuring the lovely Maya Strepper…

Paradise can be defined many different ways. Right now, though, we think it’s safe to say it looks like the Bahamas, with model Maya Strepper. Soak in the sun-drenched hues, vacation-approved silhouettes and breezy shapes that echo the spirit of summer, while you get to know the girl behind the face…

How many islands in the Bahamas have you been to?

Only once — on this trip to Eleuthera!

Favorite island in the world?

That’s a tough one, as there are so many places on my list that I haven’t yet seen. But, from the islands I have visited, it has to be Fernando de Noronha in Brazil. It’s magical!

Sunrise or sunset?


Wake up early or sleep in?

Definitely sleep in! I actually like the sun to wake me up. 🙂

First thing you pack in your suitcase?

This really depends on the destination. But usually it’s my favorite bikini.

Favorite tropical drink?

I am not really a fan of sweet drinks, so I’ll go with a Moscow Mule or a Gin Basil…

Best memory from this trip?

My amazing team and all the fun moments we had together — little dance-off’s in between shoots!

Top 3 travel essentials?

Coconut oil to keep my skin and hair smooth, a good book, sunglasses.

What do you post more of on vacay — Boomerangs or photos?

I am obsessed with Boomerangs at the moment! They just catch the vibe better!

Next planned vacation?

I’ve been dying to go to the Maldives, but haven’t made the time yet.

Do you prefer an active or lazy vacation?

I always plan a lazy vacation but end up being super active. I just don’t know how to chill. I always feel the urge to explore as much as I can.

Best island workout?

Surf and swim!

If you were stranded on a deserted island and had to bring one person with you, who would you bring?

My boyfriend, so we can play Adam and Eve… though hopefully with a better ending! 😉

What is on repeat on your playlist right now?

“Rewind” by Kelela, “It’s a Vibe” by 2 Chainz.

Words to live by?

Be true to yourself!

Most recently used emoji?


Suitcase or backpack?

Backpack, because I love to travel light!

+ Be sure to start your summer off right by shopping the full lookbook here

Huge thank-you to our studio team for the images!


Free People Blog

Ocean Brain with Chelsea Kauai

Ocean Brain with Chelsea Kauai

It is my quiet place, and the last holdout in a world overrun by constant stimulation…

I have an ocean soul. Growing up with a fisherman father on an island in the middle of the world’s largest ocean, it didn’t occur to me that I should be any other way. But even with these influences, it wasn’t until my early 20s, when I started freediving, that I fully appreciated how the water changes us.

Did you know that the moment cool water touches your face, you heart rate drops drastically and immediately? Immersed in water, the blood automatically diverts away from your limbs and toward your vital organs. Our bodies can fill the tissues of our lungs with blood in order to protect them from, what should be, enough external pressure to crush them completely. It’s called the mammalian dive reflex. We all have it, whether we use it or not.

Freediving is an act of finding comfort in an inherently uncomfortable environment. I take heart in knowing, in some small  way, our bodies were built for this. We may not always be aware of it, but we are strong and adaptable. Capable of depth as well as distances.

Being in the water and developing a relationship with the ocean has transformed my life, along with my body. It is my quiet place and the last holdout in a world overrun by computer screens and constant stimulation. So when I feel restless, I try to remember that my blood is composed of the same salinity of the sea. Perhaps it just wants to go home.

+ To catch more of Chelsea and her ocean vibes, check her out on Instagram


Free People Blog

Explore Treehouses A Labyrinth

Post image for Explore: Puerto Rican Treehouses Atop A Bamboo Labyrinth

Arrive around — wander off within this enchanting bamboo maze! 

Actually imagined residing between the bushes in a home? The one thing noticeable being& nbsp vegetation, basking?  Have A 1o-second push in to the hillsides of Rincon, Puerto Rico, and there-you’ll look for an area of property (12 miles, to become precise) endowed from the fantastic functions of bamboo, a maze carefully created and prepared by Jo, proprietor and inventor of Tropical Treehouse. After shifting to Puerto Rico and investing in a home that was restorable, Jo utilized knowledge and his creative skills of bamboo structure to create alive a lodging expertise that’s very unlike standard. With numerous “hooches,” aka bamboo treehouses, spread through the plot, he’s produced a refuge where visitors may set off the grid, linking with character while still sustaining the required features.

Jo’s child Sophie was kind enough to provide us a great excursion. Along side her  nbsp & sibling Mike, Sophie virtually;operates the display their dad; of underneath the assistance&nbsp. Learn how all this came into existence, and just how to guide a stay at Exotic Treehouses under!


Therefore tell me, how did this exotic treehouse factor start, and just why did you put up store in Rincon?

We resided within the Virgin Islands on the sailboat, bamboo “ the sloop ,  but had a need to get seated. Cheaper property was provided by Puerto Rico, and Rincon was close the Exotic Agriculture Research Stop in Mayaguez, to TARS. It’s the only real stop within the USDA that’s dedicated to farming that is exotic, also it features one of bamboo within the hemisphere’s biggest selections.



When did you begin working with bamboo?

I had been enamored using the innovative potential of bamboo palm and, consequently upon arriving from Iowa. Bamboo quickly turned my emphasis, although I started dealing from the beginning with both platforms.



Can there be a particular kind that you simply develop and develop with?

I’ve more than 35 variety of bamboo about the home, but use 6 or just 5 variety for many of my tasks. These bamboos were gathered from all over the world based on their power, from wherever I adopted as much as I really could and grown at TARS. Two species are wood bamboos — large, powerful, right — Guadua angustifolia (from Colombia), and Dendrocalamus asper (from SE Asia). Additional species, notably Textilis, are utilized for weaving and art programs.



Your home is nbsp. What objective did you’ve in your mind when designing this type of enchanting location?

Our goal was to displace the degraded overused property that I simply purchased. Bamboo is a superb place for this finish, because it stops erosion with massive compost and roots. Fruit-trees, plums, exotic hardwoods were planted by us aswell, having a hazy purpose of making a self sustaining property. The bamboo was meant to provide bamboo structure and art with my addiction, because it today does.



So what can visitors anticipate throughout their remain in one of the “hooches” (treehouses)?

The hooch treehouses provide a chance to avoid to some more personal encounter using the exotic atmosphere, being totally offgrid without compromising features. It’s open air, personal and individual, having cooler, a complete kitchenette, solar heated water electricity along with a queen size mattress within the penthouse room.



What are the eco friendly methods which have been applied through the home?

I’ve referred to many eco friendly practices solar power for energy and heated water and the utilization of bamboo for that main new aspects of the hooches. We’re conscious of the sequestration potential of bamboo, around 5X significantly more than additional, and traditional shrub woodlands that viewpoint through the use of the bamboo domestically. Our very own home grows.




The system you constructed has among the greatest sights about the home. Any unique ideas for that as time goes on?

The system continues to be within the style stage, but we do plan to include facilities toilet, home, room underneath the terrace. The terrace itself might provide a location for covering travelers originally, or might be protected with many roofing preparations that are possible.


You ve created various other fascinating items out-of bamboo that I observed round the principal home. Are these sold by you domestically?

I also have provided courses within the making-of the styles, and do market my projects domestically.


What’ve you discovered since opening the treehouses up and operating your personal company?

Leasing the treehouses out has been mdash & a really satisfying knowledge; assembly new folks from varied skills but discussing an understanding of bamboo and character. The company keeps growing, and today draws tourists from all over the world, although a faithful following of Americans. And, nearby Puerto Ricans have found us, with marketing mostly a direct result “person to person”. This trend keeps us busy throughout every season, whilst the residents holiday within the summertime, and Americans fall within the winter.


What’s next for Exotic Treehouse?

I’m presently creating another little hooch, with many ideas that are fresh to improve the framework. Next, I’ve a style to get a big hooch, details and the scale of which are& nbsp highlighted in a 3D electronic structure, and available via smartphone. The system provides an easily recognized, pre fab style that fundamentally makes the procedure affordable and simpler. Stoked!

Shout out to Sophie for that tour! <3

+Interested in stating at Exotic Treehouse? Visit their site below, and take a look at their record on Airbnb!

stay tuned in for more information from Puerto Rico.

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