“Good for the planet. Good for you. Good for people.”
As soon as we saw these three statements on the website, we were sold. Ettitude, is the beautiful bamboo brain-baby of Phoebe Yu, who along with her benevolent brand team, is making sleep even more appealing to eco conscious consumers in Australia and beyond. The incentive behind their 100% organic bamboo lyocell bedding stretches beyond providing a range of deliciously dreamy toned linen simply for aesthetics sake. They are a brand that truly honours and delivers thoughtfulness and a noble process behind their products; from design, to manufacture, to distribution, values that Plyroom considers in very high regard. We believe that connecting with likeminded makers and creative souls plays a beautiful part in driving the conscious consumer movement, and we are very delighted to share our conversation with the Ettitude team, exploring the concepts of simplicty, sentimentality and self belief.
Phoebe Yu: Founder & CEO of ettitude
Jess Pang: Marketing and Public Relations Manager
Shannon Griffiths: Social Media and Marketing Coordiantor
If you had to give a summary of yourself and what you do to someone who had never heard of it before, what would you say?
Phoebe: Founder and CEO of ettitude. I am a knowledge seeker, eternal optimist, trekking enthusiast. Sleep first. Think later. Dream always. Ettitude is an Australian bedding startup offering high quality, modern, minimalistic bedding at accessible prices with a focus on innovative fabric technology.
What do you love about what you do?
Phoebe: It allows me to be creative, together with the team and our customer, we decide what new product to make (new colours, new fabrics, expanding product lines). And when customers love our products and raving for us on social media etc, those are the best moments make all hard work worth well.
What were the motivations behind creating your brand and what did your world look like before its conception?
Phoebe: Back in 2006 when I just moved to Australia from China, I wasn’t aware of the climate crisis problem because that was not being talked about much in China at that time. So though there was not too much of a “culture shock” for me being a new immigrant, there was indeed an “awareness shock” on the environment issues facing our planet.
I just couldn’t see myself remaining in my old job anymore, which was helping international big retail chain stores sourcing price competitive giftware and homewares in Asia, knowing that those products are part of an unsustainable lifestyle of overconsumption. Most of those products will be used only once or twice during the holiday season and tossed away as they were not designed to last but to make the chain stores the highest profit margin. In addition, they were not made with eco friendly or biodegradable materials so they will end up in landfills for thousands of years!
So I started research to develop my own product line, which is well designed, well made and more sustainable. The idea for ettitude hit me when I was shopping for bedding for my first home in Melbourne. I was in shopping centres for hours hunting for the perfect sheets and was very frustrated by the fact that the affordable linen was of very low quality, while the more comfortable options were outrageously overpriced, not to mention the lack of any eco friendly choices. The solution for my frustration: to build a business from scratch offering luxury and ethical bedding essentials at an accessible price and sell online directly to consumers to bypass the bloated supply chain, and expensive designer licensing fees that were passed onto them by traditional retailers.
What themes, items or spaces do you love to work with most and why?
The ettitude team: We love our current office - it’s a clean, open-plan co-working space with lots of natural light, greenery, a rooftop terrace, positive energy and office dogs!
Who or what do you think is the embodiment of simple and thoughtful living?
Phoebe: The recent “zero trash” movement is very really inspirational and I really admire those practitioners. It is so hard to produce less trash as we are just so used to convenience, not to mention to also remember reusing and recycling things.
How do you endeavour to embrace simplicity in your life?
Phoebe: I try my best to reduce the amount of trash I produce by first buying less unnecessary items and avoid buying over-packaged or processed food.
Shannon: Really consider any new piece you want to bring into your home. Think about whether you truly love something and how it will serve a purpose to you. When you don’t have as much ‘stuff’ you realise how much you don’t actually need it. Less time spent cleaning and organising and more time for living!
Jess: Buy less and get rid of excess regularly. Make sure I do not over-commit myself to too many things and have enough me time. Spend less time on my laptop, my phone and social media, especially when I’m not working…it’s not easy but I’m trying!
Do you have any daily rituals? What do they mean to you?
Phoebe: If there is one thing I never fail to do every day is to cuddle my partner in the morning for 10-30 minutes when we just wake up. It recharges both of us so much that we get up feeling energetic, optimistic and ready for the day.
Shannon: I enjoy waking up earlier than I need to before work and taking time to slowly get ready and set myself up for a good day. The thought of rushing is not appealing to me. I like to take my time, have a nice breakfast and enjoy the quite. I also am partial for a daily coffee, just going to the local cafe is such a joy for me. I am trying to cut down though!
Jess: I always make sure I take my make up off, cleanse my face properly, have a hot shower and a cup of tea at the end of the day to unwind. I love feeling clean and fresh from head to toe when I slip into bed.
How do you create thoughtful and inspiring spaces to live and work in? What are your essentials?
The ettitude team: By decluttering and having a clean workspace. It helps us to focus and be productive. We like a space with a good balance or work and play areas, we like how our current office has little nooks where you can have a bit of me-time, clear your mind or just to have a power nap.
At home, we just like to feel cozy, relax and be surrounded by things that make us feel like home, a comfortable bed is essential! A lightly scented candle or a home fragrance also adds a good final touch.
What is your most treasured possession?
Phoebe: I don’t take possessions too seriously. The only things I can’t live without are my computer and my mobile phone as I need those for work and communication, but they are not my most treasured things. I treasure the most all the good experiences and memories I have with my family, friends, loved ones - those are priceless.
Shannon: Jewellery pieces that have been handed down to me by relatives or something I received to celebrate something or that friends have made for me.
Jess: Travel photos. Photos with friends and families. Handwritten love notes and cards. Jewellery my mom and grandma passed down to me.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve received?
Phoebe: You will destroy your happiness if you start to compare with others.
Shannon: Write down anything that is bothering you and then throw it away or delete. Sometimes just getting it out makes something less significant and stressful.
Jess: If you don’t ask, the answer will always be no.
Who or what is your creative muse or iconic visionary?
We like to take inspirations from the nature, the ocean, different landscapes…and we spend a lot of time on Pinterest! We’re obsessed with pastels at the moment.
What are you currently:
Listening to: Radical Self-Acceptance (audio book)
Watching: Black Mirror season 2
Reading: How Proust Can Change Your Life
Learning: Advanced Excel
Listening to: D.D Dumbo, Fleetwood Mac, Ben Wright Smith and Lisa Mitchell
Watching: Gilmore Girls
Reading: Re-reading Picnic at Hanging Rock by Joan Lindsay
Learning: Sewing lessons and constantly learning how to keep houseplants alive
Listening to: 22, A Million by Bon Iver, Audio TEDTalks
Reading: Several Short Sentences About Writing