Ride the Wave
Emirates Woman|July/August 2021
Hanalei Reponty-Gudauska could surf before she could walk. Embodying her love for the beach and water, she founded sustainable swimwear brand Abysse with her mother, Raphaele. At the heart of the brand is the aim to: “Produce less, produce well.”
OLIVIA MORRIS
Can you talk us through your career? I was born and raised in Tahiti, in the middle of the Pacific. Surrounded by nature and vast ocean, as well as its endless beauty, shaped every corner of my mind and being. I learnt how to surf before I could walk, and surfing became our way of life. I became a professional surfer at the age of 15, which led me to travel the world in search of perfect waves and empty lineups. This amazing adventure was followed by a transition into modelling, which was an incredible opportunity and journey. After I completed a Bachelor of Commerce at Sydney University, I yearned to create something of substance. My dream was to create a line that reflected my values – to produce for women and doing it with a conscious mind. Protecting our environment has been a cause close to my heart since I can remember and turning that passion into creating Abysse has been a magnificent journey through celebrating and creating for women that love the ocean as much as I do.

What inspired you to go into the fashion industry?

My initial goal was to create functional products for women that love the ocean but without compromising design and aesthetics. Abysse aims to blur the lines between fashion and function because we believe that one is not exclusive of the other. It was the main drive behind building and creating a brand that was not defined by the standard fast fashion pyramidal system. The goal is to always create a garment that is fashionable but functional above all else. My goal is to fill a niche, to fill the gap in the market, where women need technical designs to perform in the ocean as well as a timeless fashionable design that will empower them in and out of the water.

How did launching your own brand come about?

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Ride the Wave

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