HOMETOWN: Sydney, Nova Scotia
JOB AT UNIKA: Designer/Marketing
WHAT BROUGHT YOU TO UNIKA: After coming to realize the gap in the market for ethically-made swimwear for all shapes in sizes, especially in Canada, I decided to do some research. I then discovered Unika, a recently founded business created and run by previous George Brown students like me! I reached out and before I knew it, I was soon hired as an intern and shortly after as a full-time part of the team.
WHY YOU LOVE WHAT YOU DO: I have always loved fashion and at Unika I get to help women regain the confidence they deserve when shopping or wearing a bathing suit, which is usually when women are most vulnerable or feel most self-conscious. It is very rewarding to help people who, because of their size or special needs, have not been able to find swimwear. The journey we take with these women to create their perfect suit, a suit that makes them so happy and confident, is something extremely special and am proud to be involved in.
INTERESTS OUTSIDE OF UNIKA: I have worked in the film and tv industry before Unika with costumes and wardrobe and I will always have a passion for it! Playing varsity soccer throughout University and generally growing up playing sports I love to stay active and working out.
SOMETHING YOU WOULD TELL YOUR YOUNGER SELF: Never leave your parents phone plan! (just kidding). Don’t rush through life! Learnt to be patient and enjoy every stage you’re at in life even if it doesn’t match those of your friends or family. We are all on our own journey so enjoy your own timeline.
SOMETHING I LEARNED THIS PAST YEAR: Life is precious. Live in the moment and enjoy the simple things. Most importantly, be thankful. Living so far from my family, I will never take hopping on a plane to visit them for granted again and when I do see them, to be thankful for all the moments we share together.
ZODIAC SIGN: Leo
FAVOURITE COLOUR: Yellow
FAVOURITE MOVIE: Anything by Taika Waititi or Christopher Nolan
FAVOURITE PLACE TRAVELED TO: Italy
FAVOURITE HOLIDAY: Groundhog Day
GUILTY PLEASURE: Salt and Vinegar Chips
NAME: Serena Persaud
HOMETOWN: Toronto, Ontario
JOB AT UNIKA: Graphic Designer
WHAT BROUGHT YOU TO UNIKA: After discovering Unika through Instagram while at school, I took a chance and applied for a field placement with them. I was honoured to be chosen to work for them as I believe in what they value; body positivity, sustainability, and ethical practices. As my placement ended, I am glad to say I am still here with the Unika family!
WHY YOU LOVE WHAT YOU DO: I get to have a balance of graphic design while also being in the fashion industry. It`s exciting to be involved in colours and design and seeing the journey from start to finish of a new product. My values also match those of Unika`s which makes doing what I do easy!
INTERESTS OUTSIDE OF UNIKA: I am a huge fan of film; if I wasn’t in graphic design I would have loved to work in the movie industry. I'm obsessed with fashion and keeping up with the latest trends. Finally, I love music; I play most of the music at Unika and enjoy creating new playlists for the team to listen to.
SOMETHING YOU WOULD TELL YOUR YOUNGER SELF: You never know when you could lose your freedom or the chance to do the things you love, so try to have more fun while you can.
SOMETHING I LEARNED THIS PAST YEAR: Not to push things off for another time. Stop cancelling on plans and just do everything!
3 THINGS ON MY BUCKET LIST: Be an extra in a movie or commercial, live alone, visit a country in every continent, (besides Antarctica.)
NICKNAME: Tab/Tabby (My middle name is Tabitha)
ZODIAC SIGN: Virgo
FAVOURITE COLOUR: Pastel Blue
FAVOURITE MOVIE: Coraline
FAVOURITE PLACE TRAVELED TO: Barbados
FAVOURITE HOLIDAY: Halloween
GUILTY PLEASURE: Watching Youtube drama
NAME: Betsy Campos
HOMETOWN: Toronto, Ontario
JOB AT UNIKA: Founder
WHAT BROUGHT YOU TO UNIKA: I founded Unika in 2018 with the idea to take the frustration out of finding the perfect bathing suit. Shopping for a suit should be fun and exciting for everyone.
WHY YOU LOVE WHAT YOU DO: I love watching every person`s journey at Unika swim from start to finish. From the moment I meet someone that walks through our doors I get to guide them through a fitting and learn more about them and their story which allows me to help them confidently embrace themselves and shop excitedly for swimwear. I meet so many amazing women that challenge me and teach me each day.
INTERESTS OUTSIDE OF UNIKA: I love the gym and health and wellness. I enjoy a great conversation while dining out at the great restaurants Toronto has to offer. I also love to travel and am always dreaming of which country and culture I would like to see next!
SOMETHING YOU WOULD TELL YOUR YOUNGER SELF: Don`t take life too seriously and live each day to its fullest.
SOMETHING I LEARNED THIS PAST YEAR: In my fast-paced life sometimes it is necessary to slow down. It can show you the people or the little things we need to appreciate and not take for granted
3 THINGS ON MY BUCKET LIST: Swim with great white sharks, Go on a Safari trip in Africa and visit the Philippines.
NICKNAME: B or Bets
ZODIAC SIGN: Capricorn
FAVOURITE COLOUR: I'm not allowed to say Black so I'll say Khaki Green
FAVOURITE MOVIE: Matilda
FAVOURITE PLACE TRAVELED TO: Istanbul, Turkey
FAVOURITE HOLIDAY: Easter a.k.a Spring equinox
GUILTY PLEASURE: Twizzlers :)
NAME: Alessia Latina
HOMETOWN: Markham, Ontario
JOB AT UNIKA: Fashion Designer/Production
WHAT BROUGHT YOU TO UNIKA: I first met Betsy while studying in the same program at George Brown College. Fast forward 3 years, I was still in school, working at The Gap, but Betsy and I kept in touch. I approached her one day to help me create a custom swimsuit and she offered me a job on the spot for her brand-new business, Unika.
WHY YOU LOVE WHAT YOU DO: I am grateful to be designing and creating for a swimwear brand that is not only sustainable but a brand that celebrates body positivity, empowers women, and embraces every woman as they are. As a larger woman, I know it is important for all women to be offered equal options and opportunities. I also love that here at Unika we push against fast fashion by making everything by hand in store. Each suit is made with love!
INTERESTS OUTSIDE OF UNIKA: I love to continue being creative and work on my own designs outside of swimwear as well as enjoying time with my family and friends
SOMETHING YOU WOULD TELL YOUR YOUNGER SELF: There are a million things I would say but ultimately the main thing would be to take in and enjoy every day as much as you can and to not worry so much. Don’t sweat the small stuff because everything will turn out okay.
SOMETHING I LEARNED THIS PAST YEAR: Explore life, live more, and love more. These are aspects of our freedom that we take for granted. Freedom is valuable and we should enjoy it every day we are lucky enough to have it.
3 THINGS ON MY BUCKET LIST: Continue to contribute to fighting for larger clothing sizes to be the norm in fashion design. I would love to live in Europe for a year and to one day have a small farm filled with animals, I love all living things!
ZODIAC SIGN: Pisces
FAVOURITE COLOUR: Rainbow (I love all colours equally!)
FAVOURITE MOVIE: I love too many to pick!
FAVOURITE PLACE TRAVELED TO: Ireland
FAVOURITE HOLIDAY: Valentine`s Day
GUILTY PLEASURE: Chocolate lover!
HOMETOWN: Oakville, Ontario
JOB AT UNIKA: Seamstress/Production
WHAT BROUGHT YOU TO UNIKA: Previously in the world of dance costumes; I lost my job due to the Covid-19 pandemic which forced me to search for other job opportunities. Being in the creative industry, I wasn’t confident I would find the imaginative, fun, and versatile environment I was used to working in. Then I found Unika!
WHY YOU LOVE WHAT YOU DO: Every day is different and brings its own challenges and rewards. It is especially exciting to see the creativity of customers through the style and fabrics they choose for their custom suits. I love to see the design through to the finished product!
INTERESTS OUTSIDE OF UNIKA: Anything entertainment! I love going to watch hockey games, attend as many concerts as I can (especially at Bud Stage), and get my hands on any tickets to what is playing during TIFF. I spend most of my free time with family and friends. I love a good spin class and enjoying some cocktails!
SOMETHING YOU WOULD TELL YOUR YOUNGER SELF: Take more risks. Do what scares you because you will be so happy you did…you never know what you will regret not doing in the future!
SOMETHING I LEARNED THIS PAST YEAR: Your life or your happiness is up to you. Each day we make a choice how to live our lives and we can`t blame others or what is going on in the world for our choices or mentality.
3 THINGS ON MY BUCKET LIST: It is a goal of mine to travel to a new country every year, become a better skater and skier, and to see the 7 wonders of the world.
ZODIAC SIGN: Pisces
FAVOURITE COLOUR: Blue
FAVOURITE MOVIE: Love Actually
FAVOURITE PLACE TRAVELED TO: Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
FAVOURITE HOLIDAY: Thanksgiving and Christmas! I can`t choose!GUILTY PLEASURE: Chocolate