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Paris-Rose Paterson and Sammi Fulton-Kennedy

Creators of Gold Coast activewear label Paris & I.

Sammi Fulton-Kennedy (L) and Paris-Rose Paterson (R) of Paris & I (image supplied)

They are the local ladies who created cult activewear label Paris & I with the view of offering cute, Aussie-made workout clothes for women of all shapes and sizes. Love that for us.

We sat down for a chat with Sammi and Paris about why they decided to embark on such a journey and why their pieces are different from the rest (and you should get some ASAP).

How long have you been Gold Coast locals?
Paris: I have always lived on the Gold Coast, I was born at Pindara!
Sammi: I have lived on the Gold Coast since 2013.

What do you love most about living here?
Oh, there’s so much! But beautiful beaches, amazing weather and most importantly, a great community.

Tell us about your activewear label Paris & I?
We started Paris & I in 2018 on the Gold Coast. Our goal was and still is, to create activewear right here in Australia that leaves women feeling confident and empowered. Our brand isn’t just for women into fitness; it’s for women of all shapes and sizes. We didn’t want to follow the trend of manufacturing offshore as this jeopardises quality and the Australian economy. Manufacturing locally in Queensland also means that we can be hands-on, working closely with our manufacturer ensuring high quality and ethical practices. Paris & I is our baby, it’s 100% run by us – we do EVERYTHING. Connecting with our girls and our community is so rewarding. It’s honestly the best part. We still love to write personalised cards with every single order, which is then packed here on the Gold Coast with eco-friendly packaging. Paris & I has been seen on Chontel Duncan, Davina Rankin, Jade Mead and many more Australian female icons.

How did it come about?
Activewear is all we wear, but we could never find perfect activewear! We spent so much money and we were NEVER happy, so in 2017 we started researching and designing what we would produce… from there, Paris & I was born. In such a competitive market, we wanted to stand out. We felt the market was lacking in so many aspects and that’s why the brand instantly took off. We kept Paris & I a secret for a whole year ????. It also took us 1 year to perfect our first design ‘The High Waist Scrunch Leggings’.

What are your personal favourite pieces from the collection?
Sammi: Everyday Shorts and The Luxe Jacket
Paris: The Luxe Jacket and Scrunch Leggings

Paris & I (Image supplied)

Are your pieces designed for specific purposes?
Yes, we design and create activewear that makes all women and us feel good! It’s not just for gym girls, we wanted to create pieces that are for everyday women. It’s also Aussie-made.

How are your designs unique?
Australian made, no thick ugly seams and suitable for all body types. We are super personal with our customers, we like to connect with them and by doing this, we have gained some amazing lifelong friendships. We also just launched our Spring Collection, made up of three colours: Vanilla Bean, Electric Blue & Sage Green! We wanted this Spring collection to have some versatility (Sage & Vanilla) and always love to include something bright, bold & fun (Electric Blue). When going through the colour process, we love to choose colours that can be worn for fashion and fitness. What makes this collection unique is our marketing. To align with our goal of making women feel confident, we have decided to keep all images real and raw – no filters, no photoshop. We shoot with real women of all sizes and we’re so excited to continue sharing real content with our community.

What’s the fabric like?
Super soft, stretchy, squat proof, breathable and flattering. It contours and shapes in all the right places whilst still offering great support! We use fabrics suited to all females no matter what shape, size or stage of pregnancy.

What are your plans for Paris & I for the rest of 2020?
To bring out some fun colours (we can’t wait to share them!) and we have some exciting new designs in the works – stay tuned 🙂

Tell us your favourites on the Coast:
Coffee spot: No Name Lane
Cafe for breakfast: Daark Chirn Park
Restaurant for dinner: Omeros Bros, Wok Temptation in Southport and Grill’d
How does your weekend usually look: We usually work on Paris & I over the weekend but in our spare time, we will go for a nice beach walk or catch up with some friends over dinner. Funnily enough, we are dating brothers! It’s cool when just the four of us get to hang out and chill over the weekend.

Get physical with these new Gold Coast online workout classes

So there’s a few ways this stay-at-home business can go. One is that we all eat too much and lay on the floor thinking about all the things we should be doing instead.

The other is that we stay inside but also make inside our new world, bar crawls are now rooms-of-your-house crawls, Friday drinks are FaceTime drinks and exercise will also likely be an inside job.

Which is why we’re all here today. To discuss Gold Coast exercise-based businesses who have taken things online so that we may all stay fit while we have to stay inside.

VIP Lockdown Machine Squad
Run by local legends Machine Life, the online squad is $25 p/w with live daily workouts that can be accessed anytime on your phone or computer, using just your body weight, tips and tricks from the trainers (Jesse and Alyse) and an online community to support you through this time. Trainers help with technique, nutritional guidelines, motivation and accountability so that there’s no slacking off plus you get healthy recipes, live chats, team challenges and tailored workouts for all fitness levels. Join here.

Pilates by Lisa
One Gold Coast gal who has been doing the online thing for quite some time is Lisa, of Pilates by Lisa. Who is offering online pilates classes for all levels of fitness that you can (and should) absolutely get involved in from the comfort of your home with a FREE 10 day trial! Find them here.

Ritual Yoga and Pilates
The ladies at Palmy’s Ritual Yoga & Pilates are in the process of creating an online hub for yoga and pilates classes. They also offer pilates barre classes so you can get that booty all peachy for when we’re allowed outside again. Stay up to date with their progress here.

Currumbin Academy of Performing Arts
Here’s one for the kiddies – CAPA have taken their dances classes online so that’s one way for the little ones to burn some energy. Not to mention they’ll have fun and possibly learn a new skill while they’re at it. Check it out here.

Emily Skye Fitness
No doubt you’ve heard of Emily Skye, she’s been online for a long time now but she offers quite the array of workouts to keep you fit and fabulous. She’s a personal trainer so there’s lots of strength-based workouts, weights and body-weight based exercise. Plenty of variety. Find out more here.

Fluidform Pilates
Full body strength and conditioning is the name of the game at Fluidform Pilates with classes created to have a meaningful and positive impact. Of course, there are all manner of pilates classes on offer and creator Kirsten King is a former Gold Coaster. Get involved here.

We’ll keep updating as we find out about more business moving online but in the meantime, keep moving and take care of yourselves.

Words and photos by Kirra Smith

Pilates guru Kirsten King

Kirsten King, Fluidform Pilates (image supplied)
Kirsten King, Fluidform Pilates (image supplied)

She is the Gold Coast born Pilates guru loved the world over for her unique blend of technical knowledge combined with a passionate modern approach to healing and strengthening the body.

And excitingly for us, Kirsten King owner of Fluidform Pilates (Sydney) and instructor for a slew of professional athletes and celebrities, will this weekend teach one of her high vibe classes at Eden Health Retreat in Currumbin on Saturday August 24th.

We sat down for a chat with Kirsten about what we can expect from the weekends’ event and how we can practice Fluidform Pilates from the comfort of our living rooms.

What’s do you love most about visiting the Gold Coast?
I love visiting the Gold Coast to see my family. My Mum and Dad and other extended family still live here and any chance I get to come back and spend time with them is so special, not to mention I get to go and visit the best beaches in the world. I have so many fond memories of growing up on the Coast, it really is like coming home.

Tell us how your business Fluidform Pilates came about…
I studied for my Pilates certification in the UK and taught there for a little while and then just after my oldest daughter was born my husband and I moved to Sydney. At that time I discovered Fluidform Pilates and began teaching there which quickly turned into me buying into the business and shortly after that buying out the previous owners in full. Since then I have opened a new studio in Clovelly and also just launched Fluidform at Home, an at home Pilates subscription program. My goal is to allow as many people as possible access to Pilates and that is what I work towards across all elements of the business.

Why is Pilates something everyone should be incorporating into their lives?
Pilates brings about both physical and mental change. With a regular Pilates proactive you’ll see your body change as you become stronger and more flexible, posture improves and your body feels and looks better as overall functional movement is improved. Alongside all the physical change comes the mental strength and positivity that comes from improving your physicality. It really is a life changing practice and I see that every day with my clients whether it’s helping them through injuries or pregnancy or simply improving their overall health through regular Pilates.

Kirsten King, Fluidform Pilates (image supplied)
Kirsten King, Fluidform Pilates (image supplied)

What’s unique about Fluidform Pilates?
We are for everybody. Anyone can benefit from Pilates and we focus on having an inclusive and supportive approach in our studios and our online program. Our approach to Pilates blends the traditional training with a modern sensibility to create programming that is effective and relevant for current lifestyles.

Tell us about your event at Eden Health Retreat on August 24th…
Last year I had a week at Eden and it was life-changing. I left feeling really inspired to create a Pilates focused Eden experience and this year that is exactly what we have done, starting August 18th. For those who can’t make the full week, we are holding an outside mat class on the 24th that includes breakfast and a Q&A with Sylvia Jeffries and I. The class will be a challenging workout and the Q&A will be a chance to understand more about the way I approach Pilates.

You’re bringing along some exciting guests, what do they have to share with Gold Coasters?
Pip Edwards and Sylvia Jeffries will also be attending the retreat and mat class. Sylvia will be interviewing me for the Q&A and Pip will be joining in the mat class with all our guests. 

How can people who don’t live in Sydney experience your classes?
Fluidform at Home! It is accessible from anywhere in the world via laptop or mobile. We release new workouts and accompanying calendar each month to keep things fresh as well as other special things like a fortnightly Facebook live class or Q&A with me. FFAH is now five months old and we already have the most beautiful community of committed women and men who keep telling us how much they have benefitted from it.

What’s on the agenda for the rest of 2019 for you?
At the moment we are planning some live events across Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane to give me a chance to meet more of our Fluidform community. Other than that you’ll either find me teaching at one of the studios or spending time with my husband and three daughters!

10 unique Gold Coast exercise classes to try

Retro Fit (image supplied)
Retro Fit (image supplied)

Feeling a little ho-hum over your usual sweat sesh rotation? Or maybe your rickety rig has been feeling less like a temple and more like a ‘fixer upper’ of late?

Whether you revel in any reason to get the ole’ bod moving, or the thought of exercise bores you to your very core – having some exciting new options to throw in your trusty repertoire can never be a bad thing. So without further ado, here are 10 unique exercise experiences on the GC to try your hand at. Because, y’know, variety is the spice of life, and all that.

Retro Fit
Sweatbands, sweaty bods and lairy leg warmers as far as the eye can see – no, you have not stepped back to a simpler time when Aerobics Oz Style dominated our pre-dawn tele viewing (#NostalgiaAlert). We are, in actual fact, referring to Retro Fit, an assortment of 80’s themed aerobics sessions where you get to strut your stuff to all your favourite bygone bangers… so basically, the most fun one can have while working out. Held at The Junction in Burleigh Heads, there’s different types of sessions going down several times a week, so there’s really no excuse not to get down and… get physical [gyrating intensifies].
Where: 14 Junction Rd, Burleigh Heads

Dancing and movement (image via UnSplash)
Dancing in the dark (image via UnSplash)

Lights Out and Dance
For the rhythmically challenged among us; if the chance get your groove on under the cover of pitch black darkness sounds a dream, get on down to Lights Out and Dance and ‘dance like nobody’s watching’ (literally). Get those endorphins flowing while you lose yourself to some sweet dance beats in what is basically the most unintimidating group setting you can get. The intuitive-style sessions are held in a dark room so you can work up a sweat shaking what your mama gave you without a care in the world; and have stacks of fun in the process. Post-workout glow, incoming!
Where: Broadbeach Cultural Centre, Hooker Blvd &, Sunshine Blvd, Broadbeach Waters and Runaway Bay Youth Centre, 379 Oxley Drive, Runaway Bay

Puppy Yoga by Karmably (image by Karmably)
Puppy Yoga by Karmably (image by Karmably)

Puppy Yoga
No, we haven’t gone barking mad – Puppy Yoga is very much a thing… and yes, it’s exactly as amazing as it sounds. Picture down-dogging ’til hearts content, whilst being overrun by a sea of cute puppies! Hosted by the mindful fun and animal snuggle purveyors at Karmably, there’s various, oxytocin-boosting pop up dates held at Flow St8 throughout the year. Plus, we get to feel extra good knowing we’re helping socialise the pint-sized participants while we get our sweat on! Yep… it’s paw-ficial the perfect workout really does exist.
Where: Flow St8, 10 Fifth Ave, Palm Beach

Unfit Run Club, gold Coast (image supplied)
Unfit Run Club, gold Coast (image supplied)

Run Clubs
If your typical cardio rotation consists only of running away from your problems and jumping to conclusions, the various iterations of social run clubs that call the GC home will make a runner out of you yet. If you’re looking for a supportive environment where you can slide on in at snails pace without so much as a second glance, Parkrun is a perennial fave. With community events held weekly from Coomera through to Kirra, participants are welcome to walk, jog, run, or simply spectate. Or for a little extra incentive; we’d recommend checking out clubs that strategically plan their routes around our fine assortment of local watering holes, such as Unfit Run Club and Good Good Running.
Where: Assorted clubs/locations across the Gold Coast

Aerial Yoga, Hapy Studio (image supplied)
Aerial Yoga, Hapy Studio (image supplied)

Aerial yoga
If you’ve seen one tree pose, you’ve seen them all, right? Well, not necessarily… If you’re looking to shake up your usual stretch-and-breath sesh, Aerial yoga is where its at! Experience yoga from a whole new perspective, with an invigorating workout that involves performing poses gracefully suspended from a mix of hammock, silk and ring style contraptions. And the best part? You don’t even need to be a card-carrying yogi to get in on the fun! A variety of beginners classes mean people of all ages and abilities can learn the moves ‘on the fly’. Go on, why not give it a whirl!?
Where: Hapy Studio, 9/5 Traders Way, Currumbin

Therapy Fitness, Miami (image supplied)
Therapy Fitness, Miami (image supplied)

Therapy Fitness
When it comes to changing up the same ol’ workout grind, spin is hardly a revolutionary (geddit, heh) concept – but hear us out, because what we’re proposing is anything but your typical cycle class. At Therapy, Mermaid’s multi sensory fitness studio, the immersive ‘therapy’ sessions are all about boosting mental as well as physical wellbeing… and who doesn’t love a to-do list two-fer?! Combining music and movement, each of the fully integrated studio spaces have been optimised to get both the mind and the bod feeling fab. You’ll be glowing from the inside out in no time.
Where: Cnr Markeri St &, Southport Burleigh Rd Q Super Centre, Shop D2/D3, Mermaid Waters

Pound Fitness (image supplied)
Pound Fitness (image supplied)

Pound Fitness
Alright so remove any expectations you might have about what this entails and get excited for an extra fun time… because this workout ROCKS. Get ready to bliss out with ‘ya sticks out – fluro green drumsticks – that is, with the exhilarating full-body cardio jam session known simply as Pound. A rockstar-worthy workout that combines sweet beats with pilates inspired strength training and the sweat-dripping fun of drumming. What a time. Now this is the kind of exercise we could really ‘drum up’ some enthusiasm for! *ba dum tiss*.
Where: Various locations across the GC

Pole Dancing (image supplied)
Pole Dancing (image from unsplash)

Pole dancing
Does the thought of yet another yoga or pilates sesh low-key have you yawning? Why not step it up a notch and have a pole lot of fun challenging and contorting your core in ways you never even knew possible! Even if you’re not typically the flexy type; the pros behind some of our local studios promise there’s no previous experience or even coordination pre-requisites to give it a go! So really, we’ve got nothing to lose, and a whole lot of flexibility, and strength to gain. Sounds pretty badass to us.
Where: GCPOLEFIT, 87 Griffith St, Coolangatta and Rokh Fit Studio, Unit 2/19 Township Dr, Burleigh Heads

Cold Nips, gold Coast (image supplied)
Cold Nips, gold Coast (image supplied)

Cold Nips
What the heck is Cold Nips you ask? Well, basically, it’s a club dedicated to the art of starting your day with a nippy sunrise dip, that’s what. Promoting wellbeing and positive mental health, the national wellness initiative is all about finding joy and discomfort while connecting with like-minded peeps in nature, and how can you argue with a mood-boosting ritual like that? And to ensure they’re always keeping things fresh, each week’s mystery beach location is only revealed the Sunday night before.
Where: Locations vary weekly, check socials for deets.

NBHD HOT, Mermaid Beach (image supplied)
NBHD HOT, Mermaid Beach (image supplied)

If you’re in the mood to be challenged by more of a slow burn style workout – never fear GC, we gotchu… or at least, the Coast’s first infrared hot room does. Do not let the low impact movements and stretch-based routines deceive you – with German made infrared heating panels designed to heat your body from the inside out, a NBHD (or neighbourhood training) sesh will have you sculpting, strengthening and sweating like never before.
Where: 2582 Gold Coast Highway, Mermaid Beach

Words by Kellie Leader.

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