They say that cycling is a disease... well they were right because I got infected at 9 and ever since then this disease has become ingrained in my anatomy. It's so enriched in my blood that the only thing that can overflow is the passion for what I absolutely love.
I grew up in Cape Town during the Apartheid era and every Saturday morning I was taken to cycling skills training which was a programme for young underprivileged kids to learn how to ride a bike and potentially be the stepping to stone to start racing. I was very competitive and all I ever cared about was being one of the chosen few to get selected to join the local clubs to have the opportunity to race.
Over the last 20 Years I've had the unbelievable opportunity to race across South Africa, Europe and the United Kingdom and race against some of the world's top athletes.
My other passion is cooking, I've been a chef for 15 years working in some of the UK's finest establishments from rosette to Michelin Star restaurants as well as being a private chef for the elite. Both passions share similar comparisons as they push you to the absolute limit of physical exertion to get the most out of yourself. It's even more trying to combine both as I used to train 60-100km before a 14 hour shift or race before work and finish at 2am in the morning. You do what you do because you love what you do.
I wanted to use the same ethos that a chef would use to create an amazing dish in a Michelin star kitchen, first sourcing the finest ingredients whether that was from the garden or sourcing it from our artisan suppliers. I always created dishes based on emotion, seasonality and inspiration. I like starting with great produce that's been picked or delivered from a local farmers shop and then allow those creative juices to flow. We'd get the chefs together bouncing ideas and flavours from each other and finally coming up with something absolutely mouthwateringly spectacular that would ignite the senses and palate.
We apply this same ethos to how we create every single item of clothing for the Chaise brand, it starts with an idea. We then pool 100's of fabric textiles, colour swatches and we bounce ideas off each other until we've created something we feel would just that ooze Italian swag.