MEET JESSICA HUTCHINSON – ECO WARRIOR, SELF-PROCLAIMED SURF BUM, AND THE NEWEST MEMBER OF OUR #SMASHTESSFAM
If there’s one thing we’ve learned from the recent events of the past year, it’s that we need each other and our Earth! Over the last year, as we have practiced social distancing, we’ve taken our Rompers on new adventures, exploring our local environment, and soaking in the fresh air at every chance we get. This year for Earth Day, we partnered with a local non-profit, the Central Westcoast Forest Society (CWFS), an organization dedicated to restoring habitats and protecting wild fish in our local rainforests. At the helm of CWFS is Jessica - the Executive Director, an environmental scientist and activist, AND she just happens to be Ashley and Mercedes’ childhood bestie!
Jessica has dedicated her life to protecting our Earth, living her values through an eco-conscious lifestyle on the west coast of Vancouver Island, and leading CWFS’ work alongside indigenous communities to restore the local habitats decimated by industrial logging practices.
At Smash + Tess, we believe in slowing down the fashion cycle- creating clothing using sustainable fabrics that are meant to last, and that are made locally and ethically in smaller batches, often using a preorder model to facilitate responsible mass production. That is why we’re honored this Earth Day to partner with CWFS and sponsor their annual fundraising event – the Westcoast Triple Plank - a skateboarding, snowboarding and surfing contest. To support their incredible work, and raise awareness for how you can get involved, we’ve created a limited-edition Earth Day Shorty in West Coast Moss! 15% of the proceeds of this Shorty will be going towards CWFS and the Westcoast Triple Plank Event.
To kick off our Earth Day campaign, we wanted to introduce you to Jessica – our newest #smashtessfam feature! We hope you love getting to know her as she shares her history with CWFS, her fave ways to save the world from home and what her ultimate Sunday looks like!
How did you get started with CWFS?
I started with CWFS way back in 2005. I was just a wee 23 years old. I got a job on a restoration project with CWFS. I remember it was hot, buggy, and hard work. We planted 4,000 trees that summer, moved hundreds of wheelbarrow loads of gravel, repositioned huge logs with hand-powered winches, packed gear, and ran chainsaws.
In the end, we restored a kilometer of freshwater habitat for pacific salmon. The hard work combined with the immediate results of our work was an amazing feeling, I was hooked! I have been in love with ecological restoration ever since.
You knew Ashley and Mercedes before you started at CWFS! That must have been so fun!
Ash and I lived in Kitsilano in a small apartment, Mercedes lived in the apartment directly above us! We were full-time undergrad students at university. I had sublet my room and moved to Tofino for the summer to get work experience and be a surf bum.
What brings you joy in your day-to-day work life?
Oh, I LOVE my job! It is fun, challenging, adventurous, and rewarding. The perfect combination.
What is your fave way to be sustainable that may be small but makes a huge impact?
Well, my vegetable garden is by far the most challenging and sometimes rewarding! Last year a menacing flock of sparrows decimated my broccoli plants in less than 10 min and then just flew away! Not sure my small little 1x4 m crop is making a huge impact on the sustainability of the world, but it is fun to try. I do think it is important for my kids though, to be a part of the challenges and the rewards.
What advice do you have for our readers who may be new to living a more sustainable life?
Get involved. Tune in on a cause that is important to you and find a way locally that you can help.
Who inspires you?
Everyone! Gosh, I’m inspired by all the amazing people I get to work with. There are so many gems. We are such a great team.
What is your fave way to rock your Romper?
I know this is very predictable, but I’m really into a short Romper, 70s striped gym socks, and Birkenstock’s! Terrible but amazing!
What does your ultimate Sunday look like?
Ok, this is a fantasy, right? Cause the stars would never align for this but here it goes: Romper on, coffee on my couch by the woodstove, kids sleep in late, I sneak out for a morning surf with clean waves and a couple of friends, I return to a clean house, breakfast made, happy children, and my lovely husband.
Fave pump-up song?
Lady don’t Tek No by Latyrx
It’s a classic!
What does being a part of the #smashtessfam mean to you?
I love that it is a family. I love the positive energy and the female empowerment. It’s so important.
Your purchase of this limited-edition Earth Day Shorty will help CWFS in reaching the fundraising goal of $20,000 in 2021! A Shorty you can feel good in while doing good!
Preview the Earth Day Shorty here!