NICOLE Lucas has bold aspirations for her cheeky cossie brand Thalassa Swim.
“I want it to be one of Australia’s biggest swimwear labels and my end goal is for Rihanna to wear it, which is a big goal but she’s a big inspiration,” says the 29-year-old Novocastrian.
“I’ve worked really hard to get where I am and I want to show young girls that you can work towards your dreams and you just need to work hard and you can make it.”
Raised in Merewether, Ms Lucas finished school and moved to Sydney to follow her dream of working in fashion. Studying at FBI fashion college she held down bar jobs while interning at magazines including Dolly and Madison before heading to London, where she interned at Top Shop and was a fashion stylist for Net-A-Porter.
Back home, she was a freelance stylist for the likes of Newcastle-born Miss Universe finalist Tegan Martin and singer/actor Samantha Jade, junior fashion editor at Cosmopolitan and is now freelance fashion and beauty editor for Girlfriend online.
Her partner Alex encouraged her to follow her dream of developing Thalassa, the Greek word for sea (Ms Lucas is of Greek heritage), and gave her some finance to get her first range off the ground.
Thalassa swimwear is bold and cheeky and celebrates curves – a look Ms Lucas says was missing locally
“Every time I went to Europe or the US I’d find unique bikinis you couldn’t buy here,” say says.
“I would say my slogan is ‘bikinis with attitude’ because they are bright colours, all the prints are original and the cuts are inspired by 90s and 80s so sexier high cut and cheeky bottoms.
“I feel it stands out: when you’re wearing my brand people recognise it.”
Ms Lucas, who designs all her prints and costumes before they are made in Bali, says her brand is selling well globally and locally since its May 2017 launch.
“The US is our main market and we are expanding into Mexico, Philippines, Switzerland, the UK and even In Kuwait,” she says. “It was slow to start but after using social media as a marketing tool and having global influencers wearing my stuff the sales increased immensely.”